DON’T Say BIEN, say THESE 6 Alternatives Instead!

DON’T Say BIEN, say THESE 6 Alternatives Instead!

¿Cómo estuvo el concierto?
(How was the concert?)


¿Y la playa?
(And the beach?)

Bien, también.
(Good, too.)

Stop it already! Bien is such a common word that’s excessively used to answer a variety of questions in Spanish.

Sin embargo, aunque decir bien no tiene nada de malo (However, even if there is nothing wrong with saying good), there are other ways to say bien in Spanish, and today you’re learning 6 of them.

I’m Spring Spanish teacher, Paulisima. ¡Empecemos! (Let’s start!)

1. Genial (Cool, lit: genius)

A perfect chunk of Spanish, quite popular among millennials like myself.

¿Cómo te la pasaste el fin?
(How was the weekend?)



¿Cómo estuvo el concerto?
(How was the concert?)

Genial, tocaron todas mis favoritas.|
Cool, they played all my favorite songs.)


Paulísima, ¿qué te parece que la junta sea el próximo miércoles?
(Paulisima, what do you think about the meeting being next Wednesday?)

Miércoles, genial, sí.
(Wednesday, cool, yes.)

Did you notice? In the last one, I used “genial” to answer a somewhat formal question. You can do this if you want, people do this. Genial is used exactly as you would use “cool.” Such a beautiful chunk of Spanish!

Download a copy of the most common Spanish chunks right there in the description of this video.

2. Me mamó (I love it / I dig it, lit.: it sucked me)

Me mamó.

¿Les cuento un secreto? (Can I tell you a secret?)

Many years after not living in Mexico, when I came back, and I heard young people saying this phrase I was like: ¿Qué? (What?)

Es que suena bastante vulgar, realmente. (It’s just that it sounds quite vulgar, really.) But it only means “I reaaaaaally liked it”.

Úsalo sólo con gente cercana. (Use it only with close people.) See how different you’ll sound:

¿Cómo estuvo la comida?
(How was the food?)


Contra (versus):

¿Cómo estuvo la comida?
(How was the food?)

¡Me mamó!
(I loved it!)


¿Sí te gustó el helado de tequila?|
Did you like the tequila ice cream?)

¡Me mamó!
(I loved it!)

3. De poca (Lit.: Of little “dope”)

I think “me mamó” is the younger alternative of “de poca”. A phrase that many people of my generation use.

Me la pasé súper genial en La Paz. Las playas están de poca y la comida… uff, me mamó. (I had a super cool time at La Paz. The beaches are dope, and the food… pff, I loved it.)

Paulísima, ¿has ido al Grito?
(Paulisima, have you been to the “Grito”?)


¿Y qué tal?
(And how was it?)

Está de poca.
(It was dope.)


Me dijeron que está buena la de House of Gucci.
(They’ve told me that House of Gucci is really good.)

Sí, está de poca.
(Yes, it’s dope.)

Sí mi gente está de poca (Yes My poeple I dig it)

¡Güey! ¡La nueva hamburguesa de pollo de McDonalds! ¿Ya la probaste?
(Dude! The new McDonald’s chicken burger! Have you tried it?)

¡Ya sé! Está de poca.
(I know! It’s dope.)

4. Fíjate que bien (It is/was good, lit.: Look, good.)

. Oh my God! I love this phrase. It is sooooooo Mexican.

Esta frase te hará sonar como todo un mexicano. Si ese es tu objetivo, tienes que ver este video. (This phrase will make you sound like a real Mexican. If that is your goal, you have to watch this video.)

Adding that “Fíjate que” to “bien” changes everything. This means something more than bien. It’s more like you’re stating your surprise to the fact that something turned out “bien”.

¿Cómo le fue a Pablito en su partido?
(How did Pablito do in his game?)

Fíjate que bien.
(It was good.)

Oye, ¿y la cita a ciegas a la que fuiste?
(Hey, and the blind date that you went to?)

Fíjate que bien.
(It was good.)

¿Cómo te fue en tu primer día?
(How did you do in your first day?)

Fíjate que bien.
(It was good.)

5. Más o menos (more or less)

Más o menos. (More or less.) Ok, this doesn’t translate as “bien”, but so often we say that something is “bien” when really it was more… mediocre.

Fui al Cheesecake Factory de la ciudad de México.
(I went to the Cheese Cake Factory in Mexico City.)

¿Y? ¿Te gustó?
(And? Did you like it?)

Más o menos.
(It was ok.)

¿Ya fuiste al nuevo café de por tu casa?
(Have you been to the new café near your place?)


¿Y? ¿Qué tal?
(And? How is it?)  

Eh… más o menos.
(Uh… ok.)

6. La verdad… (The truth…)

La verdad… It’s exactly like saying “to be honest…” Este chunk es como el anterior: lo usamos en vez de decir “bien” cuando en realidad queremos decir… “meh”. (This chunk is like the previous one, we use it instead of saying “bien” when we really mean… “meh”.)  

The beauty of this chunk is that we don’t even need to say anything else… our face is enough…

Let’s use some of the previous questions

¿Cómo le fue a Pablito en su partido?
(How did Pablito do in his game?)

La verdad…
(To be honest…)

Oye, ¿y la cita a ciegas a la que fuiste?
(Hey, and the blind date that you went to?)

La verdad…
(To be honest…)

¿Cómo te fue en tu primer día?
(How did you do on your first day?)

La verdad…
(To be honest…)

Now that you’ve expanded your vocabulary, you are ready to learn how to make Mexicans think you might be one of us. Click on the image to go to the next lesson, where you will learn just that. Watch it, ¡está de poca!

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