Planning a trip to a Spanish-speaking country? There are a few everyday words you should learn, and hey, kisses are a big deal in Latin America and Spain, whether it’s a friendly greeting a la a kiss on the cheek, or something more.
That’s why it’s good to know how to say “kiss” in Spanish. There are tons of ways depending on the region and the context, from romantic to platonic. We’ve got you covered with this article on different ways to talk about kissing in Spanish. Ready to pucker up?
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Kiss in Spanish at a Glance
All the Ways to Say Kiss in Spanish
Alrighty, let’s kick things off with the most straightforward translation of “kiss”: beso . It’s a noun that works all over the Spanish-speaking world, so whether you’re in Spain, Mexico, Chile, or wherever, people will know what you mean!
Beso is the result of the action of kissing, which is the verb besar. But when you say beso, you have to pair it with the verb dar, which means “to give”. So the full expression would be dar un beso, which essentially means to give a kiss.
Entonces, la tomé de la cintura y le di un beso en los labios
So, I grabbed her by the waist and kissed her on the lips.”
As in English, the word beso may or not have a romantic connotation, depending on the context in which we are using it. It’s possible to dar un beso en la boca, “to kiss on the mouth”, and also dar un beso en la mejilla “to kiss on the cheek”; or anywhere else!
Another way to say kiss in Spanish is besito . In Spanish, you can make words sound cuter by adding –ito or –ita to the end – which is called a diminutive – and that’s exactly what happens with beso, making it besito.
A besito is a tiny, quick little kiss – like a peck. And just like a regular beso, a besito can be romantic or not, depending on who you’re kissing. You could give your romantic partner a besito, but you could also give one to your child, your pet, or your friend.
¿No le vas a dar un besito a mami?
Aren’t you going to give mommy a little kiss?
Un besito is also a very common way to say goodbye to someone when you’re talking on the phone. When you say un besito, you’re sending an affectionate farewell to someone you know and love.
Mañana hablamos. ¡Un besito!
We’ll talk tomorrow, little kiss!
Just as the diminutives are made by adding the suffix ito, augmentatives are made by adding the suffix azo or ote. So, if we want to talk about a very big kiss, we can say: Un besazo or Un besote.
Similar to besito, besazo is also used to end phone conversations or to say goodbye to someone in a letter or email. Of course, un besazo is something that we would only use with someone with whom we are very close to, such as a close friend, relative, or partner. For example, an email could end like this:
Espero saber pronto de ti. Un besazo.
I look forward to hearing from you. A big kiss.
Pico can be translated as “peck”: a short, small and quick kiss.
The difference between a pico and a besito is that a pico is always on the mouth so it usually has romantic connotations. Regardless, a pico is usually innocent: It’s the type of kiss that one would expect between two kids, for instance.
¡Juan y Laura se dieron un pico!
Juan and Laura kissed!
Similar to beso, the term pico only makes sense when it’s paired with the verb dar (to give). Although technically pico refers to the action and result of the verb picar (to peck), this verb doesn’t apply in this context.
Another word you can use is piquito, which is the diminutive form of pico. Finally, in Mexico, a derivative of pico called picorete is also commonly used.
As per the Royal Spanish Academy (RAE), besuquear means “to kiss someone or something repeatedly.” Besuquear doesn’t always carry a romantic connotation, and it doesn’t necessarily have a negative meaning either, although it usually implies an irritating action. For instance:
Deja de besuquear al gato. ¡No le gusta!
Stop kissing the cat. He doesn’t like it!
In English, the term “French kiss” is used to describe a deep and passionate kiss between two individuals. In Spanish, the most common translation is literal: beso francés.
Vi a Carlos y Mónica dándose un beso francés en el parque.
I saw Carlos and Monica French kissing each other in the park.
Lata is a noun that literally translates to “can.” It can refer to a “can of vegetables” or a “can of soda,” for instance. However, in Venezuela, lata can also be used as a synonym for “kiss,” specifically a long and deep one.
It’s commonly said that two people are cayéndose a latas or cayéndose a latazos when they engage in a passionate kiss. For example:
¿Puedes creer que se estaban cayendo a latas delante de todos nosotros?
Can you believe they were kissing in front of all of us?
Chapar is a slang verb used in several Latin American countries, including Argentina, Peru, and Uruguay.
The word “chapar” can be a considered a synonym for “French kiss”. Interestingly, it has been passed down from generation to generation. It’s used by both young and old people. The action and result of “chapar” is called “chape.”
The correct way to use the word chapar is chaparse a alguien. For example:
Me chapé a mi novio en el bar
I kissed my boyfriend at the bar.
In Spain, there’s a peculiar term used in youth slang: morreo . It refers to a French kiss. The corresponding verb for this term is morrearse.
The origin of the word morreo is amusing: one of the meanings of morro is “lips”. Thus, morrearse means something like “to come together with lips.” Here’s an example sentence you might hear from a Spanish teenager:
He visto a Fernanda morreándose con Paco
I have seen Fernanda kissing with Paco.
Mucha is an adverb that means “many”, “a lot” or “much”. However, in Ecuador, it also functions as a noun meaning “a kiss”.
Le di una mucha al chico que me gusta
I kissed the boy that I like.
Wait a minute… What if you kiss a lot with the guy you like? We assume you give muchas muchas…
The last word we’ll leave you with is a word commonly used in Argentina and Uruguay: “ tranzar .” This verb is a synonym for “French kiss.” However, it’s considered a somewhat outdated term. It’s more commonly used by individuals over 40 than teenagers. Here’s an example of this word in use:
Cuando era joven, solía tranzar con mi novia en el parque
When I was young, I used to kiss my girlfriend in the park.