Body Parts in Spanish – Master Them Head to Toe

body parts

Today we are going to talk about another useful vocabulary group: Parts of the Body.

I’m sure you are asking yourself: “when the heck am I going to use this kind of words in real life?”

Trust me, there are plenty of situations when knowing body parts in Spanish come in handy.

When you comment on someone’s appearance, for instance, 

or when you feel pain or ache, 

when you have a doctor’s checkup,

or when your gym coach gives you instructions for new exercises. 

13 Most Important Body Parts in Spanish:

  • 🇪🇸 la cabeza – 🇬🇧 head
  • 🇪🇸 los brazos – 🇬🇧 arms
  • 🇪🇸 las piernas – 🇬🇧 legs
  • 🇪🇸 las manos – 🇬🇧 hands
  • 🇪🇸 los pies -🇬🇧 feet
  • 🇪🇸 la espalda – 🇬🇧 back
  • 🇪🇸 el estómago – 🇬🇧 stomach
  • 🇪🇸 el pecho – 🇬🇧 chest
  • 🇪🇸 los ojos – 🇬🇧 eyes
  • 🇪🇸 las orejas – 🇬🇧 ears
  • 🇪🇸 la boca – 🇬🇧 mouth
  • 🇪🇸 la nariz – 🇬🇧 nose
  • 🇪🇸 los dedos – 🇬🇧 fingers or toes

Parts of Your Head, Trunk, and Extremities in Spanish

Ok, so the list above is your absolute must-know. It will help you to survive when a conversation takes the body-part track. 

For those of you who would like to learn more specific vocabulary, take a look at the table below:

🇪🇸 la cara – 🇬🇧 face
🇪🇸 el pelo – 🇬🇧 hair
🇪🇸 el cuello– 🇬🇧 neck
🇪🇸 la boca – 🇬🇧 mouth
🇪🇸 los labios– 🇬🇧 lips
🇪🇸 los dientes – 🇬🇧 teeth
🇪🇸 las muelas – 🇬🇧 molar teeth
🇪🇸 la lengua – 🇬🇧 tongue
🇪🇸 la frente– 🇬🇧 forehead
🇪🇸 las mejillas – 🇬🇧 cheeks
🇪🇸 la barbilla – 🇬🇧 chin
🇪🇸 las cejas – 🇬🇧 eyebrows
🇪🇸 las pestañas – 🇬🇧 eyelashes
🇪🇸 los párpados – 🇬🇧 eyelids
🇪🇸 la piel – 🇬🇧 skin
🇪🇸 os hombros – 🇬🇧 shoulders
🇪🇸 las costillas – 🇬🇧 ribs
🇪🇸 el ombligo – 🇬🇧 navel / belly button
🇪🇸 el codo – 🇬🇧 elbow
🇪🇸 la rodilla – 🇬🇧 knee
🇪🇸 la muñeca – 🇬🇧 wrist
🇪🇸 el tobillo – 🇬🇧 ankle
🇪🇸 la palma – 🇬🇧 palm
🇪🇸 el puño – 🇬🇧 fist
🇪🇸 uñas – 🇬🇧 nails
🇪🇸 el muslo – 🇬🇧 thigh
🇪🇸 la pantorrilla – 🇬🇧 shin
🇪🇸 las caderas – 🇬🇧 hips
🇪🇸 l poto, el culo – 🇬🇧 bum, buttocks
🇪🇸 la cintura – 🇬🇧 waist

Remember that the Spanish language distinguishes between genders. Pay close attention to the articles that accompany the nouns: la and las indicate that the word is feminine and el and los – masculine. Gender confusion is one of the most common mistakes that English speakers make when they speak Spanish.

Depending on the noun gender and form (singular and plural), you’ll have to adjust the adjective when necessary. For instance:

🇪🇸 el pelo largo
🇬🇧 long hair – masculine, singular

🇪🇸 la boca rosada
🇬🇧 pink hair – feminine, singular

🇪🇸 los hombros anchos
🇬🇧 broad shoulders – masculine, plural

🇪🇸 las manos pequeñas
🇬🇧 small hands – feminine, plural

Using Body Parts in Spanish to Describe People’s Appearance

Have you noticed that John had a haircut?

And Lucy’s legs look really short in these pants!

Have you had a nose-job? It looks quite different today!

We gossip, complain, and comment on people’s appearance all the time, and there is no reason you shouldn’t be able to do the same in Spanish.

Check out the sample sentences below to practice Spanish body parts in this context:

🇪🇸 ¡Tienes unos ojos muy lindos!
🇬🇧 You have such beautiful eyes!

🇪🇸 ¡Me encanta tu pelo! Es tan suave y sedoso.
🇬🇧 I love your hair! It’s so soft and silky.

🇪🇸 ¡Odio mi nariz! Es demasiado grande para mi cara. 
🇬🇧 I hate my nose. It’s too big for my face. 

🇪🇸 ¡Quisiera tener unas piernas como las tuyas: largas y delgadas.
🇬🇧 I wish I had legs like yours: long and slim.

🇪🇸 Mónica debería hacer más ejercicio. Sus caderas son demasiado anchas.
🇬🇧 Monica should work out more. Her hips are too wide.

🇪🇸 Test Your Spanish Knowledge 🇪🇸

🇪🇸 ¡Mira las rodillas de este niño! ¡Están muy sucias!
🇬🇧 Look at this boy’s knees! They are filthy!

🇪🇸 Francisca dice que quiere operarse los párpados. Los tiene muy caídos.
🇬🇧 Francisca says she wants to have eyelid surgery. They are very droopy. 

🇪🇸 Me quiero hacer un piercing en el ombligo.
🇬🇧 I want to get a navel piercing. 

Body Parts in Spanish and How to Use Them to Talk About Pains and Aches

A headache, a toothache, a shooting pain in your leg, a sore throat.

We get to talk about pains and aches on a daily basis, don’t we?

If you learn how to name them in Spanish, you will at least be able to ask for aspirin or cough syrup. 

And if necessary, describe your symptoms to a doctor. 

The Spanish keyword here is dolor, which can translate either as pain or ache

You use it with the verb tener (to have),  sentir (to feel), or sufrir (to suffer).

🇪🇸 Tengo un dolor de muela.
🇬🇧 I have a (molar) toothache. 

🇪🇸 Siento mucho dolor en la espalda.
🇬🇧 I feel a lot of pain in my back.

🇪🇸 Toda la vida he sufrido dolores de cabeza. 
🇬🇧 I’ve suffered from headaches all my life.

🇪🇸 ¿Desde cuándo has tenido este dolor en la muñeca?
🇬🇧 How long have you had this pain in your wrist?

Now, your pains can evolve, right? They can go away, increase, or get better. 

Here are some useful Spanish verbs to describe what is happening with your pains.

  • 🇪🇸 pasarse 🇬🇧 to go away, to stop
  • 🇪🇸 aumentar 🇬🇧 to increase
  • 🇪🇸 empeorar 🇬🇧 to get worse
  • 🇪🇸 disminuir – 🇬🇧 to decrease
  • 🇪🇸 mejorar – 🇬🇧 to get better
  • 🇪🇸 calmarse – 🇬🇧 to calm down
  • 🇪🇸 aliviar – 🇬🇧 to relieve

🇪🇸 Llevo una semana con este dolor de muela. No se me pasa con nada.
🇬🇧 I’ve had this toothache for a week. It doesn’t go away with anything.

🇪🇸 El dolor que siento en el hombro empeora en la noche. 
🇬🇧 The pain I feel in my shoulder gets worse at night.

🇪🇸 Cuando tomo un analgésico fuerte el dolor de la cadera se calma por un par de horas.
🇬🇧 When I take a strong painkiller, my hip pain calms down for a couple of hours.

🇪🇸 El dolor que siento en el hombro empeora en la noche. 
🇬🇧 The pain I feel in my shoulder gets worse at night.

🇪🇸 Las compresas calientes me alivian un poco el dolor del cuello. 
🇬🇧 Hot pads relieve my neck pain a little. 

Another way of talking about pain is by using the verb doler to hurt

🇪🇸 Me duele el estómago.
🇬🇧 I have a stomach ache.

🇪🇸 ¿Te duele cuando mueves el brazo? 
🇬🇧 Does it hurt when you move your arm?

🇪🇸 Me ha dolido mucho la espalda últimamente.
🇬🇧 My back has hurt a lot lately.

🇪🇸 Después de la cirugía la cadera te dolerá por un par de semanas.
🇬🇧 Your hip will hurt for a couple of weeks after the surgery. 

Body Parts in Spanish – Accidents, Injuries, Bumps, and Bruises

Have you ever broken your leg,

or sprained your ankle?

Do you have any scars from childhood accidents?

Our everyday conversations are filled with topics like these. 

Take a look at the mini dialogues below to see how to talk about accidents in Spanish:

A: Tengo malas noticias. Juan tuvo un accidente de moto y se fracturó ambas piernas.
B: ¡Qué terrible! ¿En qué hospital está?
A: I have bad news. Juan’s had a motorcycle accident, and he’s broken both legs.
B: How terrible! What hospital is he in?

A: ¿Por qué tienes este moretón en la frente y rasguños en tu cara?
B: Me peleé con un muchacho en el colegio. 
A: Why do you have this bruise on your forehead and these scratches on your face?
B: I had a fight with a guy at school.

A: Ten cuidado con estos tacones altos. Te puedes esguinzar el tobillo.
B: Tranquila, estoy acostumbrada a andar con este tipo de zapatos. 
A: Be careful with these high heels. You can sprain your ankle.
B: Don’t worry, I’m used to walking in this kind of shoes.

A: ¿Ves esta cicatriz que tengo en la cabeza? Fue cuando me golpearon con un bate.
B: Es bastante grande. ¿Cuántos puntos te pusieron?
A: Can you see this scar I have on my head? It’s from when I got hit with a baseball bat.
B: It’s pretty big. How many stitches did they put?

A: Me he cortado un dedo. ¿Me ayudas a vendar la herida, por favor?
B: Claro, ¿dónde está el botiquín?
A: I’ve cut my finger. Can you help me bandage it, please?
B: Sure, where is your first aid kit?

A: ¿De dónde le salió este chichón en la frente a Pedrito?
B: Se ha caído de su cama.
A: Where did Pedrito (little Pedro) get this bump on his forehead?
B: He’s fallen off his bed. 

Simon Says: Scratch Your Nose!

I’m sure you know the game, don’t you? 

Simon can make you do so many different things: bend your knees, shake your head, stomp your feet, stick out your nose.

Spanish also has an impressive selection of verbs that you can combine with body parts and use, whether in a game or in your everyday life. 

Check for yourself:

🇪🇸 Pablo se está sobando las manos por el negocio que acaba de cerrar. 
Pablo is rubbing his hands for the deal he’s just closed. 

🇪🇸 Me lavé la cara, me cepillé los dientes y me peiné el pelo.
🇬🇧 I washed my face, brushed my teeth, and combed my hair. 

🇪🇸 Me pica mucho la espalda. ¿Me la puedes rascar?
🇬🇧 My back is very itchy. Can you scratch it, please?

🇪🇸 Saca tu lengua y di “aaaaa”.
🇬🇧 Stick out your nose and say “aaaaa”.

🇪🇸 No arrugues tanto la frente. 
🇬🇧 Don’t wrinkle your forehead so much. 

🇪🇸 Para evitar la celulitis, masajea tus muslos con esta crema.
🇬🇧 To avoid cellulitis, massage your thighs with this cream.

🇪🇸 No me gusta cuando la tía Margarita me pincha las mejillas con sus dedos huesudos. 
🇬🇧 I don’t like it when aunt Margarita pinches my cheeks with her boney fingers. 

🇪🇸 La danza del vientre requiere que aprendas cómo sacudir tus caderas. 
🇬🇧 Belly dance requires you to learn how to shake your hips. 

Have you noticed how many synonyms the word stomach has in English? Belly, tummy, breadbasket…

In Spanish, given that there are so many countries that speak this language, many colloquial substitutes for the official “estómago” and “ vientre” have developed as well. 

In some countries, it is called barriga, in others guata, panza, or tripa.

For some reason, in an informal context, Spanish speakers sometimes replace the proper name of a body part with its “animal equivalent”.

La cara” – face – becomes “ el hocico” – a snout

Piernas” – legs – are replaced with “patas” – paws.

We no longer have “un poto” – buttocks, but “una cola– a tail.

Using Body Parts in Spanish During a Workout

Do you remember your PE classes back at school? The teacher giving you all sorts of instructions on how to move your body. 

If you are enrolled at a gym, do pilates or yoga, it’s basically the same thing: stretch your arms, bend your knees, lift your legs…

Ugh, I’m getting tired already.

Here’s a selection of common verbs that appear in workout instructions in Spanish:

  • 🇪🇸 doblar – 🇬🇧 to bend
  • 🇪🇸 estirar- 🇬🇧 to stretch
  • 🇪🇸 levantar- 🇬🇧 to lift
  • 🇪🇸 apretar- 🇬🇧 to squeeze
  • 🇪🇸 flexionar – 🇬🇧 to flex
  • 🇪🇸 girar- 🇬🇧 to twist, to turn

🇪🇸 Dobla las rodillas y salta. 
🇬🇧 Bend your knees and jump. 

🇪🇸 Estira las piernas y toca tus pies con las manos. 
🇬🇧 Stretch your legs and touch your feet with your hands. 

🇪🇸 Recuéstate de espalda y levanta ambas piernas.
🇬🇧 Lay on your back and lift both legs. 

🇪🇸 Gira tu tronco hacia la derecha. 
🇬🇧 Twist your torso to the right. 

🇪🇸 Mantén la espalda recta. 
🇬🇧 Keep your back straight. 

🇪🇸 Siempre aprieta el abdomen cuando haces este ejercicio. 
🇬🇧 Always squeeze your abdomen when you do this exercise. 

In the last sentence, you can spot two cognates, i.e., words that look similar in English and Spanish. 

The Spanish language has many similarities with English, which makes it an excellent second-language choice

When Body Parts in Spanish Become Adjectives

In Spanish, just like in English, you can turn body parts into adjectives.

How would you call a boy with big ears? “A big-eared boy,” right?

In Spanish it would be “un niño orejón”.

Whatever part of your body is of exaggerated size, you can use it as an adjective by adding the “-ón” (masculine) or “-ona” (feminine) ending to it.

🇪🇸 No me gustan las mujeres pechugonas.
🇬🇧 I don’t like big-breasted women.

🇪🇸 Patricia es una bocona
🇬🇧 Patricia is such a big mouth.

🇪🇸 Eres demasiado caderona para este tipo de falda.
🇬🇧 You’re too hippy / full-hipped for this kind of skirt. 

🇪🇸 Desde que se casó, Pancho se ha puesto muy barrigón.
🇬🇧 Since he got married, Pancho has gotten pot-bellied.

🇪🇸 Lucía se cree muy narigona y quiere operarse apenas cumpla los 18 años.
🇬🇧 Lucía finds herself very big-nosed and wants to get a (plastic) surgery as soon as she turns 18.

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Joanna Lupa
Joanna Lupa
Polish by birth, Chilean by the turns of life. Has spent 20 years in that beautiful South American country working as a language teacher and translator. Has taught Spanish and English to students of all proficiency levels. Passionate about languages, books, and traveling. A mother of 2 trilingual teenagers.

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