Basic Kpop Terminology 


Click here to learn some basic Kpop terms!

Minhyuk from Monsta X doing some pretty relaxed aegyo

If you are new, you may have heard some of these already. I know I did when I was new and I was confused when I heard them, and they were so commonly used that everyone else had an idea what it meant, so no one clarified. Eventually, I found it out, but it took longer than I liked.

So down below is a list of common words found in the kpop community. Feel free to add any or ask questions about them in the comments below! Also remember to like this post if you found it helpful.

Oppa – Meaning “older brother,” oppa is a term used by girls when speaking to guys. “Oppa” is also loosely used to flirt and show affection for an older guy not related to a girl. Never, ever insult a girl’s oppa… don’t.

Hyung – Literally older brother, but also used by Korean males to address another male older than them who they are close to.

Eonni/Unni – Means “older sister” in Korean and is used by younger girls when speaking to older girls who are related or not. Can also be used by a catty girl with the aim to put down a girl similar in age to her.

Noona – Korean word meaning “older sister” used by males related or not, speaking to an older woman or girl. A noona usually finds herself being the object of affection for countless younger guys. SHINee are poster children for loving all the noonas in the world.

Noona killer – A hot younger guy capable of making all the noonas love him by ruining their lives with actions such as winking, smiling, teasing, and in extreme cases of manipulation, sucking kimchi juice off their fingers. Noonas BEWARE.

Aegyo – Acting overly cute and innocent to charm fans.

Aniyo – Korean word for no

Ne – Korean word for yes

Yah – Basically “hey.” Used to get someone’s attention or yell at them. Do not use this with your elders or anyone older than you, though.

Aish – An exasperation of anger.

Aigoo – A word used to show frustration. The Korean equivalent of “aw man!” or “geez.”

Bias – Your favorite. You are biased towards them, essentially, and support almost everything they do.

Bias ruiner – Challenges your love for your bias. Basicially, he or she wants to be your bias instead and is fighting you hard on it

CF – Commercial film. Sometimes crazy, sometimes weird, but always cute commercial starring your favorite K-drama and K-pop stars.

Daebak – Expression to praise something that is big, positive, and great.

Dongsaeng – A dongsaeng is a younger friend or sibling. Anyone younger than you is considered your dongsaeng, regardless of gender. You can even use this term in a fun and sarcastically playful way, especially if you’re a girl: if you’re an older girl (see noona) involved with a younger guy, you can tease them by calling them “dongsaeng” instead of using their actual name.

Sunbae – This term means “senior” in Korean, and is most often used in a school setting.

Hoobae – Refers to people with less experience in an industry, or someone younger than you.

Saesang – Obsessive “fans” who have one too many screws loose. These “fans” are known for their outrageous and often dangerous behavior towards Idols and actors. Sasaeng fans are known to stalk idols outside their homes, even break into their homes, chase them down in cars and taxis, and send creepy, disgusting, and unsanitary gifts.

Anti-fan – The people who hate your group and honestly go out of their ways to sabotage them.

Eye-Smile – When a male or female smiles, their eyes become small and also form into their own smile. Usually eye smiles are a stealthy way of flirting and stealing your affections. A guy or girl can be crazy or even rude, but the moment they smile and reveal their eye smile, they’re the cutest people in the universe!

Fanservice – Something idols and actors do just to please fans, even if it’s not relevant to the show. For example, K-drama shower scenes (not complaining).

Fighting/Hwaiting – A phrase that means “You can do it!”

Flower boy: An incredibly attractive, model-perfect Korean guy who dresses well.

Jjang! – Means “best” in Korean. Also the title for a K-pop show on Mnet. The best way to say this phrase is by emphasizing the g at the end. Give a thumbs up and say “Jjangggg!”

Kekeke/ㅋㅋㅋ – When using “hehehe” just doesn’t sound cute enough to express your laughter. Some people actually “kekeke” out loud, which is not recommended. Keep the kekeke-ing to texting. It is like LOL.

Maknae – In every K-pop group, there is a youngest member. That member is referred to as the group’s maknae and is often an evil naughty person with the face of an angel. See Kyuhyun of Super Junior. Or Jungkook of BTS.

Netizen – A somewhat vague term for a “citizen of the internet.” K-pop and K-drama netizens are known for taking small non-existent issues and turning them into huge career-ending situations. They also enjoy acting as the moral police and will even create online petitions to try and get entertainers either punished and in some cases, have a K-drama storyline changed. The antics of netizens are alternately aggravating and hilarious, depending on your mood that day.

Selca – A selca is a self-portrait taken with a camera phone. The standard selca involves holding your cell phone angled down so you look smaller, and posing in an extremely cute way. Selcas can be taken with or without props, and can even include personal doodles for added cuteness.

Skinship – When one person touches another person. It doesn’t even have to be a major touch. If one person brushes their hand along another, it’s skinship. If one person’s shoulder accidentally brushes up against another it’s still considered skinship.

Ulzzang – Means “best face” in Korean, and refers to people who are way better looking then the average. They usually posses large eyes, porcelain-smooth skin and are champions in online modeling contests. Ulzzangs are popular on social media sites, and often work for various Asian clothing sites.

Visual – Refers to the best-looking member of a K-pop group. Each member is assigned a position and yes, the visual is an actual position within a group. The visual is the face of the group. You may find another member to be “best looking,” but technically by industry standards he or she is no match for the assigned “visual.”

Yeobo – Korean for “honey,” this is a term of endearment used most often between a married couple.

Jagiya – Korean word for “darling” basically. Said between couples.

This post seems a little daunting, but once you are in kpop they stick. Hard.

Most of the definitions were found here, but some are my own. I tried my best. Feel free to add on or correct me if you see fit.

Peace, love, and Jimin to you all!

Have some Jikook skinship


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