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How to Say "Never" in Spanish

How do you say "never" in Spanish? Today's lesson will teach us a couple of different ways to say "never" in Spanish as well as some simple formulas and rules for using them. Are you ready?

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The Spanish Word Nunca

The most common way to say "never" in Spanish is with the word nunca. Let's hear it in action:

 

¿Pero pantaloncitos calientes? ¡No, nunca!

But hot pants? No, never!

Caption 16, La Sucursal del Cielo - Capítulo 1

 Play Caption

 

Rules for Using Nunca in Spanish

Now that we know that nunca is the most common word for "never" in Spanish, let's learn a couple of formulas for using it.

 

1. Nunca + affirmative sentence 

Let's see some examples of this construction from our Yabla Spanish library:

 

Nunca he estado en China.

I have never been in China.

Caption 27, Carlos explica - El pretérito Cap 3: Perfecto compuesto II

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Juan nunca pone atención en clase.

Juan never pays attention in class.

Caption 20, Carlos explica - Los cinco sentidos

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Note that if there is an explicitly stated subject like Juan in the second example, it must be placed before the word nunca.

 

2. No + sentence + nunca

This way of saying "never" in Spanish entails a "double negative," which, in contrast to English, in Spanish is grammatically correct. Taking our previous two examples, we will now convert them to this double negative formula to express exactly the same thing:

 

Nunca he estado en China.

No he estado en China nunca.

Both mean: "I have never been to China."

 

Juan nunca pone atención en clase.

Juan no pone atención en clase nunca

Both mean: "Juan never pays attention in class."

 

Now, let's look at a couple of additional examples of this double negative formula, noting that within this construction, the word nunca can go pretty much anywhere as long as it comes after the verb.

 

Creo que este momento no lo voy a olvidar nunca.

I think I'll never forget this moment.

Caption 10, Tu Voz Estéreo - Laura

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Él todavía no ha salido nunca afuera.

He has still never gone outside [of it].

Caption 39, Animales en familia - Un día en Bioparc: Cachorro de leopardo

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The Spanish Word Jamás

Just like nunca, the Spanish word jamás also means "never" in Spanish but is generally considered more emphatic. To remember how to use this word correctly, we can simply substitute the word jamás for nunca in our aforementioned formulas, utilizing the same parameters. Let's see some examples:

 

Yo jamás te mentiría.

I would never lie to you.

Caption 28, Los Años Maravillosos - Capítulo 7

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No se me hubiera ocurrido jamás.

It never would have occurred to me.

Caption 21, Los Años Maravillosos - Capítulo 12

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Nunca Jamás

If you want to be even more emphatic, you can combine nunca and jamás to get nunca jamás, which means something like "never ever" and is commonly seen in songs, telenovelas (Spanish soap operas), and other dramatic scenarios. Let's take a look:

 

Nunca jamás sentí tanto dolor. -No, no, no, no

I have never ever felt so much pain. -No, no, no, no

Es un puñal clavado aquí en mi corazón

It's a dagger stabbed here in my heart

Captions 15-16, Victor Manuelle - Nunca Habia Llorado Así

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Que quedaste embarazada y nunca jamás lo volviste a ver.

That you ended up pregnant and you never ever saw him again.

Caption 50, Yago - 10 Enfrentamientos

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With these melodramatic examples, we hope that this lesson has helped you feel more confident expressing the idea of "never" in Spanish, and don't forget to write us with your questions and comments.

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Articles of Clothing in Spanish

Do you know the names of articles of clothing in Spanish? Knowing what clothing items in Spanish are called might help you on your next Spanish quiz or, better yet, on that shopping spree on your next vacation to a Spanish-speaking country! Let's explore some clothing vocabulary in Spanish with lots of examples from our Yabla Spanish library.

 

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How Do You Say "Clothing" in Spanish?

First, let's note that the most common way to talk about clothing in English is with the less formal noun "clothes," which is always plural. That said, the Spanish equivalent for "clothes" or "clothing" in Spanish is the noun la ropa, which is almost always used in the singular! Let's take a look:

 

Bueno, si tienes mucha ropa.

Well, if you have a lot of clothes.

Me encanta la ropa y soy adicta a los zapatos.

I love clothes and, I'm a shoe addict.

Captions 19-20, Ricardo - La compañera de casa

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However, on some, less formal occasions, primarily in Latin America, you may come across the plural form las ropas: 

 

vestidos básicamente con ropas de seda,

dressed basically in silk clothing,

Caption 33, Días festivos - La diablada pillareña

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Additional nouns for saying "the clothes" or "clothing" in Spanish in a general fashion include both la vestimenta and la indumentaria, whereas the noun la prenda (de vestir) describes an individual clothing "item" or "garment":

 

a esta prenda la llamamos "chompa",

we call this garment a "chompa" [jacket],

Caption 18, Ana Carolina - Lavandería

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Clothing Vocabulary in Spanish

Now, let's learn the names of some of the most common articles of clothing in Spanish, hearing most of them pronounced via clips from our Yabla Spanish library. For some items, we will provide several Spanish names since there is a lot of variation in how these items are said from country to country. 

 

Bathing suit: el traje de baño, el vestido de baño, el bañador, la malla

 

A mí, el vestido de baño porque ya saben, me gusta la playa.

For me, my bathing suit because, you already know, I like the beach.

Caption 41, Cleer y Lida - Juego de preguntas y respuestas

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Note that the term la malla refers to a women's swimsuit and is most commonly heard in Argentina:

 

Ay, Mili, pará, no tengo malla.

Oh Mili stop, I don't have a swimsuit.

Caption 35, Muñeca Brava - 9 Engaños

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Of course, the word "bikini" remains the same in Spanish:

 

Si hace calor... el bikini.

If it's warm... the bikini.

Caption 14, Un Viaje a Mallorca - Planificando el viaje

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Blouse: la blusa

 

Esta es una blusa que tiene estampado. 

This is a blouse that has a print.

Captions 36-37, Natalia de Ecuador - Vocabulario de prendas de vestir

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Cap: el gorro, la gorra

Both the masculine form el gorro and the feminine form la gorra can be used to describe a "cap" such as a baseball cap or snow hat/cap.

 

Esta parte de la gorra es azul.

This part of the cap is blue.

Caption 16, Luana explica - Los colores

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Un gorro de lana de color blanco.

A white wool hat.

Caption 16, Ana Carolina - Lavandería

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Dress: el vestido

 

Este vestido puede salir sobre unos cincuenta, sesenta euros. 

This dress could go for about fifty, sixty euros.

Caption 84, 75 minutos - Gangas para ricos - Part 15

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Gloves: los guantes

 

Los guantes, unos guantes rosaditos... -Sí.

The gloves, some pink gloves... -Yes.

Caption 52, Cleer y Carolina - De compras

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Hat: el sombrero

El sombrero is a more general term for all types of hats.

 

¡Mira qué bonito este sombrero!

Look how pretty this hat is!

Caption 46, Ariana - Mi Semana

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Jeans: el pantaló​n vaquerolos vaqueros, el jean/los jeans

 

unos vaqueros grises. 

and some grey jeans.

Caption 41, El Aula Azul - Conversaciones sobre fotos

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que cuando te mides un jean en un almacén dicen,

that when you try on some jeans at a store they say,

Caption 28, Los Años Maravillosos - Capítulo 8

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Pajamas: el/la piyama, el/la pijama

Notice the alternative spellings for the nouns for "pajamas" in Spanish (one with a y and one with a j), and while both versions are used with the masculine article in Spain and South America, the feminine article is employed in the rest of Latin America. Furthermore, although it is prevalent to see them in singular, you may also run into their plural forms (pijamas/piyamas).

 

A la ropa de dormir en Latinoamérica la llamamos con el anglicismo piyama

In Latin America, we call sleepwear the anglicism "piyama" [pajamas],

Caption 11, Ana Carolina - Arreglando el dormitorio

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Pants: el pantalón, los pantalones

Interestingly, either the singular plural form of this noun can be used to refer to a pair of pants or simply "pants," as in the following two examples:

 

Necesito un pantalón negro. -OK.

I need some black pants. -OK.

Caption 8, Cleer y Carolina - De compras

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"Se me han roto los pantalones", por ejemplo.

"Se me han roto los pantalones" [My pants have ripped], for example.

Caption 69, Clase Aula Azul - Se involuntario

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Scarf: la bufanda, el pañuelo

While la bufanda usually describes the type of scarf one might wear to keep warm in the snow, el pañuelo refers to more of a bandana-type scarf:

 

Menos mal que llevaba una bufanda

Thank God I was wearing a scarf.

Caption 21, Aprendiendo con Zulbany - Piensa rápido

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¡Oh! ¿Y este pañuelo tan bonito?

Oh! And this really beautiful scarf?

Caption 66, Clase Aula Azul - La posesión

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Shirt: la camisa

 

Me gusta la camisa.

I like the shirt.

Caption 4, Extr@: Extra en español - Ep. 2: Sam va de compras - Part 6

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Shorts: los pantalones cortos

 

Algunos clubs permiten el uso de pantalones cortos o bermudas. 

Some clubs allow the use of shorts or bermudas.

Caption 64, Montserrat - El golf

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Skirt: la falda

 

Esta falda está muy larga. 

This skirt is too long.

Caption 46, Los Años Maravillosos - Capítulo 3

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As you may have guessed, the Spanish word for "miniskirt" is la minifalda:

 

Ya admití suficiente con que se pusiera la corrompisiña esa de la minifalda.

I permitted enough with you putting on that corrupt miniskirt.

Caption 15, La Sucursal del Cielo - Capítulo 1 - Part 10

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Socks: las medias, los calcetínes

Let's hear the terms for "socks" in Colombia and other parts of Latin America vs. Spain:

 

Lo que acabamos de ver, en Colombia

What we just saw, in Colombia,

lo llamamos "medias", las "medias".

we call "medias" [socks], "medias."

¿En España? Son los "calcetines". -Los "calcetines". 

In Spain? They're "calcetines" [socks]. -"Calcetines."

Captions 39-41, Carlos y Xavi - Part 3 Diferencias de vocabulario entre España y Colombia

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If you are interested in more such differences, check out this series on pronunciation and vocabulary differences between Spain and Colombia

 

Sweatsuit: el chándal, el buzo, el jogging

 

Entonces no podemos olvidar el chándal tampoco.

Then we can't forget a tracksuit either.

Caption 62, Un Viaje a Mallorca - Planificando el viaje

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T-shirt: la camiseta, la remera

 

Andrea lleva una camiseta de manga corta de color blanco 

Andrea is wearing a white short-sleeved t-shirt

Caption 40, El Aula Azul - Conversaciones sobre fotos

 Play Caption

 

Suit: el traje

 

se vistió con su mejor traje

put on his best suit,

Caption 34, Aprendiendo con Carlos - El microrrelato

 Play Caption

 

Tank Top: la camiseta sin mangas, la camiseta de tirantesla musculosa

 

Te creo. -Bueno, me dio la musculosa para salir. 

I believe you. -Well, he gave me the tank top to go out.

Caption 51, Yago - 1 La llegada - Part 5

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Tie: la corbata

 

Qué linda corbata.

What a nice tie.

Caption 2, Confidencial: El rey de la estafa - Capítulo 5 - Part 5

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Although the term la corbata typically refers to a necktie, there are many words to describe a bow tie in Spanish, including el moño, el corbatín, la pajarita, la lacita, la corbata de moño, and la corbata de lazo

 

Vest: el chaleco

 

tenemos que llevar siempre un chaleco reflectante 

we must always wear a reflective vest

Caption 56, Raquel y Marisa - Aprender a conducir

 Play Caption

 

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Outerwear in Spanish

There are so many different Spanish words for "sweaters," "sweatshirts,"  "jackets," "coats," and other outerwear, and every country has their own way to talk about these articles of clothing in Spanish. In fact, some of the same Spanish terms are used to describe different items in different countries. Let's take a look.

 

Jacket: la chaqueta, la chamarra, la campera, la cazadora, la chompa

Even within the English language, it is sometimes a fine line between what constitutes a "jacket" vs. a "coat," which some people view as synonymous. That said, the above-referenced Spanish terms generally refer to something more sporty, casual, and/or lighter weight.

 

¡Una chaqueta de cuero! 

A leather jacket!

Caption 48, Extr@: Extra en español - Ep. 2: Sam va de compras - Part 2

 Play Caption
 

Coat: el abrigo, el chaqetón, la chamarra

The Spanish terms for "coat" might generally be thought of as describing a heavier/warmer garment:

 

Después me voy a poner el abrigo porque va a hacer frío. 

Later, I'm going to put on my coat because it's going to be cold.

Captions 22-23, Cristina - Naturaleza

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Blazer: el saco, la americana, la chaqueta

 

y así con, con saco y con corbata, ¿te imaginás el calor? 

and like that with, with a blazer and tie, can you imagine the heat?

Caption 37, La Sucursal del Cielo - Capítulo 2 - Part 2

 Play Caption
 

Raincoat: el chubasquero, el impermeable, el piloto, el sobretodo

 

Los días de lluvia llevábamos un chubasquero y botas de agua. 

On rainy days, we wore a raincoat and rain boots.

Captions 54-55, Aprendiendo con Silvia - Recuerdos de infancia

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Sweater: el jerseyel sué​ter, el pulóver, la chompa

Let's hear how to say "sweater" in both Spain and Colombia:

 

Eh... Se llama "jersey". -"Jersey".

Um... It's called a "jersey" [sweater]. -"Jersey."

Nosotros le decimos "suéter". 

We call it "suéter" [sweater].

Captions 44-45, Carlos y Xavi - Part 3 Diferencias de vocabulario entre España y Colombia

 Play Caption

 

Sweatshirt: la sudadera, el jersey, el sué​ter, el pulóver

 

mandé a hacer uniformes, sudadera y todo; ¿qué tal? 

I got uniforms made, a sweatshirt and everything; what do you think?

Caption 114, Club 10 - Capítulo 1 - Part 3

 Play Caption
 
 

Undergarments in Spanish

Now, let's hear how to say the general term for "underwear" or "undergarments" in Spanish before moving on to the many words for the more specific articles of clothing in Spanish in this category:

 

No, no es bombachitas. En todo caso es ropa interior.

No, it's not panties. In any case, it's underwear.

Caption 68, Muñeca Brava - 43 La reunión

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Bra: el brasierel corpiñoel sosténel sujetador

 

¿Van a dejar de usar brasier, ah? 

Are you going to stop wearing a bra, huh?

Caption 18, La Sucursal del Cielo - Capítulo 1 - Part 10

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Briefs: los calzoncillos, los calzones

 

entonces, ahí estaba yo, de nuevo en la clase de matemáticas,

[and] then, there I was, in math class again,

¡y esta vez en calzoncillos

 and this time, in my underwear!

Captions 48-51, Los Años Maravillosos - Capítulo 7

 Play Caption
 

Panties: los calzoneslas bragas, las braguitas, la bombacha, los pantis

 

Así que ya te veo desfilando, en cualquier momento, con bombacha y corpiño.

So I see you modeling, any minute now, in panties and bra.

Caption 43, Muñeca Brava - 18 La Apuesta

 Play Caption

 

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Footwear in Spanish

To conclude this lesson, we'll examine how to say the words for the more general "footwear" and "shoes" in Spanish prior to learning some more specific vocabulary:

 

Yo me dedicaba a vender calzado; tenía un almacén.

My job was selling footwear; I had a shop.

Captions 55-56, Imbabura - Paramédicos

 Play Caption
 

se convirtieron en un par de zapatos nuevos y relucientes. 

changed into a new, shiny pair of shoes.

Caption 29, Cleer - El cuento de los cuatro hermanos

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Boots: las botas

 

Y unas botas altas. -Sí. 

And some tall boots. -Yes.

Caption 23, Un Viaje a Mallorca - Planificando el viaje

 Play Caption

 

Flip-Flops: las chanclas

 

unas chanclas,

some flip flops,

Caption 12, Ariana - Mi Semana

 Play Caption

 

High Heels: los tacones

 

Me encantan los tacones

I love high heels.

Caption 57, 75 minutos - Gangas para ricos - Part 14

 Play Caption

 

Slippers: las pantuflas, las zapatillas

 

Y por aquí, no pueden faltar las pantuflas o babuchas,

And over here, you can't do without slippers or house shoes,

Caption 88, Natalia de Ecuador - Vocabulario de prendas de vestir

 Play Caption

 

Sneakers: las zapatillas, los tenis, los zapatos deportivos

Interestingly, the word for "slippers" in many Spanish-speaking countries, las zapatillas, means "the sneakers" in Spain. Now, let's listen to another word for "sneakers" or "athletic shoes" in Spanish:

 

los tenis

and tennis shoes.

Caption 38, Cleer y Lida - Juego de preguntas y respuestas

 Play Caption
 

That's all for today. To review clothing terms in Spanish, we recommend videos like Marta de Madrid - Prendas de ropa, Natalia de Ecuador - Vocabulario de prendas de vestir, and Ana Carolina's Lavandería and Salir de compras. We hope that this lesson has helped you to learn a lot of articles of clothing in Spanish, and don't forget to write us with your questions and comments.

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