In Spanish, pesado is a very rich adjective that has multiple meanings. This word is widely used both in standard and slang Spanish. As a result, you may want to learn what ‘pesado’ means in Spanish.
‘Pesado’ is a Spanish adjective whose meaning will vary depending on the context where it is being applied. Depending on the situation, ‘pesado’ could mean:
- Unpleasant / Annoying
- Nasty / Disagreeable
- Tedious / Boring
- To be Good At
- Oppressive / Tense
- Dark Humor
Although it’s not a difficult word to use, most Spanish learners don’t know that ‘pesado’ has different meanings and that it could be useful in a lot of situations. In the following sections, we’ll explain to you the different contexts where you can apply this word as well as the phrase structures you may need.
On top of showing you the standard meanings, we’ll also discuss the slang meanings of ‘pesado’. By the end of this article, you’ll know all of the meanings for ‘pesado’ as well as understand how and where to use this word properly.
1. Heavy – Describing an Object’s or Person’s Weight
In standard Spanish, ‘pesado’ is the direct translation of ‘heavy’. As a result in this context, we use this adjective to describe an object’s or person’s weight. It can also be used to express that some food is heavy or that some of your body parts feel slow. Here are some examples of how to apply this meaning of ‘pesado’.
¿Qué traes en tu bolsa? Está muy pesada
What do you have in your bag? It’s very heavy
No cargues el garrafón, está muy pesado para ti
Don’t carry the water bottle, it’s too heavy for you
Me siento muy pesada, necesito hacer más ejercicio
I feel heavy, I need to do more exercise
Marc es boxeador y participa en la categoría de peso pesado
Marc is a boxer and he competes in the heavyweight division
¿Hamburguesas? No crees que es algo pesado para esta hora
Burgers? Don’t you think they’re a little bit heavy for this time of day?
Take Note: As an adjective, ‘pesado’ needs to match the gender and the number of the object that it’s referring to. Additionally, notice that as a synonym of ‘heavy’, this adjective works with verbs like ‘estar’ and ‘sentirse’. When talking about food you may use ‘ser’ since burgers may be always heavy for dinner 😉
2. Difficult – Describing Activities
In casual conversations, ‘pesado’ can be translated as ‘difficult’ as long as we’re expressing that an activity is difficult to do or to understand. Here are some examples as well as the phrase structure you will use in this context:
[Activity] + [estar conjugated] + pesado / pesada
La clase de español está muy pesada
The Spanish class is very difficult
Las rutinas de ejercicio de Raúl están muy pesadas
Raul’s exercising routines are very difficult
Laura, el proyecto que me diste está muy pesado. ¿Puedes darme más tiempo?
Laura, the project that you gave me is very difficult. Could you give me more time?
You could also use this more advanced phrase structure. Even though we use different elements, ‘pesado’ still means ‘difficult’.
Se + [indirect object pronoun] + [hacer conjugated] + pesado + [verb infinitive]
A Steven y a Gabriel se les hace pesado comprender el subjuntivo
Steven and Gabriel find it difficult to understand the subjunctive mode
Antes se me hacía pesado practicar mi español con hablantes nativos, hoy lo disfruto mucho
Before it was difficult for me to practice my Spanish with native speakers, today, I really enjoy it
Related Resources: How to Use ‘Se’ in Spanish
3. Annoying / Unpleasant – Describing Someone’s Personality
In Spain and in most Latin American countries, ‘pesado’ can also be used to describe that someone has a very difficult personality. In this context, ‘pesado’ could mean ‘unpleasant’, ‘annoying’ or ‘pain in the neck’. Since we’re referring to someone’s personality, you will need to use the verb ‘ser’. Here are some examples:
¡Qué pesada es la nueva chica!
The new girl is a pain in the neck!
No sabía que Fernanda y su hermano fueran tan pesados
I didn’t know that Fernanda and her brother were so unpleasant
¡Qué pesadito eres! ¿No tienes otra cosa que hacer?
You’re so annoying, don’t you have something else to do?
Tus amigas son unas pesadas, no sé cómo las aguantas
Your friends are such a pain in the neck, I don’t know how you tolerate them
Take Note: In this context, ‘pesado’ is an informal and casual expression, as a result, there are other adjectives that you could use to describe these types of people: latoso, desagradable, enfadoso, etc.
Related Resources: Latoso – Meaning & Translation
4. Nasty / Disagreeable – Talking about Appearances
The previous section explained how to use ‘pesado’ to describe someone’s personality. This description is based on your experience interacting with someone. However, you could also use ‘pesado’ to describe someone’s personality based on appearances. As a result, ‘pesado’ could be translated as ‘nasty’, ‘disagreeable’ or ‘unpleasant’.
Below, you’ll find the phrase structure you need to follow. If you don’t want to sound too judgy, replace ‘pesado’ with the following variations to soften your comment:
- Pesadita / Pesadito
- Medio pesada / Medio pesado
- Medio pesadito / Media pesadita
- Un poco pesado / Un poco pesada
[Subject] + [verse conjugated] + pesada / pesado
Los amigos de Henry se ven muy pesados
Henry’s friend seems so unpleasant
La chica nueva se ve medio pesadita, ¿alguien ya la conoce?
The new girl seems a little bit nasty, somebody knows her?
¿Cómo se llama el nuevo jefe? Se ve pesadito, ¿no?
What’s the new boss’s name? He seems a little bit disagreeable, doesn’t he?
5. Tedious / Boring – Talking about Activities
As an adjective, ‘pesado’ can be used to describe objects. In some contexts, this description will express that the object you’re talking about is so dense that it gets ‘boring’ or ‘tedious’. Generally speaking, in this situation, Spanish speakers use ‘pesado’ to refer to:
- TV shows
La película que vimos está muy pesada, no te la recomiendo
The movie that we saw was so tedious, I don’t recommend it
No terminé de leer este libro, la verdad está muy pesado
I didn’t finish reading this book, to be honest, it’s too boring
La clase de las siete de la mañana está muy pesada, si puedes, busca otro profesor
The class at seven in the morning is very tedious, if you can, find another teacher
6. To be Very Good At – Talking about People’s Abilities
Another informal and casual meaning of ‘pesado’ is to express that someone is very good at a certain activity. In this context, you imply that this person is skilled or good at his or her activity and that it’s quite challenging to beat them. Here are some examples as well as the phrase structure you will need to use:
Estar [conjugated] + pesado / pesada + para + [verb infinitive]
Charlie y Tom están pesados para aprender idiomas
Charlie and Tom are very good at learning languages
Beatriz está pesada para cocinar, ¿has probado sus pasteles?
Beatriz is very good at cooking, have you tried her cakes?
Here is another variation of this phrase structure:
Estar [conjugated] + pesado / pesada + en + [noun]
Billy está pesado en matemáticas
Billy is very good at maths
Mario y Elisa están pesados en programación
Mario and Elisa are very good at programming
7. Oppressive / Tense: Talking about the Weather or Ambiance
In standard ‘Spanish’, this adjective can also be used to describe the weather or a place’s ambiance. In this context, ‘pesado’ expresses a negative characteristic. As a result, it could be translated as ‘oppressive’ or ‘tense’.
Like many other meanings of ‘pesado’, in this situation, you would also need to use the verb ‘estar’.
El ambiente en la oficina ha estado bastante pesado
The atmosphere in the office has been really oppressive
El clima está muy pesado hoy, debe ser la humedad
The weather is quite oppressive today, it must be the humidity
En la casa, las cosas están un poco pesadas porque me peleé con mi roomie
In my house, things are a little bit tense because I argued with my roommate
8. Dark Humor – Talking about Someone’s Sense of Humor
Another common use of ‘pesado’ is to describe someone’s sense of humor. With this meaning, ‘pesado’ is expressing that a person has a ‘cruel’ or ‘dark humor’. Unlike other contexts, in this case, you will need to work with the verb ‘tener’.
¡Qué humor tan pesado tienes!
You have such dark humor!
Nunca entiendo tus bromas, tienes un humor muy pesado
I never understand your jokes, you have such a cruel humor
Mike tiene un humor un poco pesado, pero es agradable una vez que lo conoces
Mike has a dark sense of humor, but he’s nice once you get to know him
Thanks to its multiple meanings, ‘pesado’ is an adjective that can be used in common, real-world situations and contexts in Spanish. Therefore, in this article, we gathered the most popular meanings of this word. Remember that in some cases the meaning of ‘pesado’ will be affected by the verbs that you use as well as the context. Now you’re ready to start applying this word into your own conversations.