How Do You Say “Tickling” In Spanish?

Learning a new language is an exciting journey, full of new experiences and opportunities. One of the most enjoyable aspects of learning a new language is discovering new words and phrases that don’t exist in your native tongue. For example, have you ever wondered how to say tickling in Spanish? The Spanish translation for tickling is cosquillas.

How Do You Pronounce The Spanish Word For “Tickling”?

Learning to properly pronounce words in a foreign language can be challenging, but it’s essential for effective communication. If you’re wondering how to say “tickling” in Spanish, it’s important to know not only the proper pronunciation but also the phonetic breakdown of the word.

The Spanish word for “tickling” is “cosquillas” (kohs-KEE-yahs). Let’s break that down phonetically:

  • “cos” is pronounced like “cose” in English
  • “qui” is pronounced like “key” in English
  • “ll” is pronounced like a soft “y” sound in English
  • “as” is pronounced like “ahs” in English

To properly pronounce “cosquillas,” start by saying “cose-KEE-yahs” with an emphasis on the second syllable.

Here are a few tips for mastering the pronunciation:

  1. Practice saying the word slowly and emphasizing each syllable.
  2. Listen to native Spanish speakers say the word and try to mimic their pronunciation.
  3. Break the word down into its phonetic parts and practice each sound individually before putting them together.
  4. Record yourself saying the word and listen back to identify any areas that need improvement.

With a little practice and patience, you’ll be able to confidently pronounce “cosquillas” and other Spanish words with ease.

Proper Grammatical Use Of The Spanish Word For “Tickling”

Proper grammar is essential when using the Spanish word for “tickling.” Incorrect use can lead to confusion or misinterpretation of the intended meaning. Here are some guidelines to follow:

Placement In Sentences

The Spanish word for “tickling” is “cosquillas.” It is typically used as a verb or a noun in a sentence. When used as a verb, it is usually followed by the pronoun “a” and the person being tickled. For example:

  • Le hice cosquillas a mi hermano. (I tickled my brother.)
  • ¿Te gusta que te hagan cosquillas? (Do you like to be tickled?)

When used as a noun, “cosquillas” can be placed before or after the verb, depending on the sentence structure. For example:

  • Las cosquillas me hacen reír. (Tickling makes me laugh.)
  • Me gusta hacerle cosquillas a mi sobrino. (I like to tickle my nephew.)

Verb Conjugations Or Tenses

When using “cosquillas” as a verb, it follows regular verb conjugation patterns in the present tense. For example:

Person Conjugation
Yo hago cosquillas
haces cosquillas
Él/Ella/Usted hace cosquillas
Nosotros/Nosotras hacemos cosquillas
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedes hacen cosquillas

When using “cosquillas” in the past tense, it follows the regular preterite tense pattern. For example:

  • Le hice cosquillas a mi hermana. (I tickled my sister.)
  • Hicimos cosquillas a nuestros amigos. (We tickled our friends.)

Agreement With Gender And Number

The word “cosquillas” is feminine and plural, so it must agree with any adjectives or articles used to describe it. For example:

  • Las cosquillas son divertidas. (Tickling is fun.)
  • Me gusta hacerle cosquillas a mis primas. (I like to tickle my cousins.)

Common Exceptions

There are no common exceptions to the use of “cosquillas” in Spanish grammar.

Examples Of Phrases Using The Spanish Word For “Tickling”

Tickling is a universal experience that is enjoyed by many. It is a sensation that can be described as both pleasurable and uncomfortable, depending on the person. In Spanish, the word for tickling is “cosquillas.”

Phrases Using “Cosquillas”

Here are some common phrases that include the Spanish word for tickling:

  • “Me haces cosquillas” – You’re tickling me
  • “No me hagas cosquillas” – Don’t tickle me
  • “Me da cosquillas” – It tickles me
  • “Las cosquillas son divertidas” – Tickling is fun

These phrases can be used in a variety of situations, from playful banter to serious conversations. Let’s take a closer look at some example sentences:

  • “Me haces cosquillas cuando me abrazas” – You’re tickling me when you hug me
  • “No me hagas cosquillas, por favor” – Don’t tickle me, please
  • “Me da cosquillas en los pies” – It tickles me on my feet
  • “Las cosquillas son divertidas, pero a veces pueden ser demasiado” – Tickling is fun, but sometimes it can be too much

Now let’s look at some example dialogue that includes the Spanish word for tickling:

Juan: ¿Te gusta que te hagan cosquillas?

María: Sí, me encanta. Me da mucha risa.

Juan: Entonces, ¿te puedo hacer cosquillas?

María: Claro, pero no en los pies. Soy muy sensible ahí.


Juan: Do you like being tickled?

María: Yes, I love it. It makes me laugh a lot.

Juan: So, can I tickle you?

María: Sure, but not on my feet. I’m very sensitive there.

As you can see, the Spanish word for tickling can be used in a variety of contexts and situations. Whether you’re having a playful conversation with friends or discussing personal preferences, knowing how to use “cosquillas” in your Spanish vocabulary can come in handy.

More Contextual Uses Of The Spanish Word For “Tickling”

The Spanish word for “tickling” can be used in various contexts, depending on the formality of the situation and cultural nuances.

Formal Usage Of Tickling

In formal situations, the Spanish word for “tickling” is typically used in a medical context. For example, a doctor may ask a patient if they are experiencing any “cosquilleo” or tickling sensations in certain areas of their body. Additionally, “cosquilleo” can be used in legal contexts to describe a crime of sexual nature, such as “tocamientos con fines libidinosos” or “cosquilleo en las partes íntimas”.

Informal Usage Of Tickling

In informal situations, the Spanish word for “tickling” can have a playful connotation. Parents may ask their children if they are ticklish, saying “¿Eres cosquilloso?” or friends may use it to describe a funny situation, saying “¡Qué cosquillas me das!” or “You’re making me tickle!”.

Other Contexts

The Spanish language also has a variety of slang and idiomatic expressions that use the word for “tickling”. For example, “cosquillas en el bolsillo” or “tickles in the pocket” is a phrase used to describe someone who is wealthy or has a lot of money.

Context Example
Slang “Tienes las cosquillas de punta” or “You have your tickles on point” means you’re being witty or clever.
Idiomatic “Reírse a carcajadas hasta que les hagan cosquillas en el estómago” or “Laugh so hard until your stomach tickles” is a common expression.
Cultural/Historical In Mexican culture, “cosquillas” are a traditional part of the Day of the Dead celebration, where they are used to symbolize the fleeting nature of life.

Popular Cultural Usage

The Spanish word for “tickling” is often used in popular culture, such as in songs, movies, and TV shows. For example, the popular Spanish children’s song “Al corro de la patata” includes the lyrics “y le hacemos cosquillas” or “and we tickle him/her”. Additionally, the Spanish movie “Cosquillas” tells the story of a man who becomes obsessed with tickling after being tickled as a child.

Regional Variations Of The Spanish Word For “Tickling”

Like any language, Spanish has regional variations. The way words are used and pronounced can differ depending on the country or even the region within a country. This is also true for the Spanish word for tickling.

Usage Of The Spanish Word For Tickling In Different Spanish-speaking Countries

In Spain, the most common word for tickling is “cosquillas.” However, in Latin America, this word is not as widely used. Instead, many countries have their own unique words for tickling.

In Mexico, for example, the word for tickling is “cosquillas” like in Spain, but it can also be “gargajeo” or “jijijear.” In Argentina, the word for tickling is “cosquilludo,” which is derived from the word “cosquillas.” In Chile, the word for tickling is “güiñar,” and in Peru, it is “jocotear.”

It’s important to note that these regional differences are not limited to just these countries. In fact, there are many other variations of the word for tickling throughout the Spanish-speaking world.

Regional Pronunciations

Not only do different countries have their own words for tickling, but they also have their own unique pronunciations. For example, in Spain, the “ll” in “cosquillas” is pronounced with a “y” sound, while in Latin America, it is pronounced with a “j” sound.

Similarly, in Mexico, the word “jijijear” is pronounced with a “j” sound, but in Argentina, the “j” sound is much softer and almost sounds like a “sh” sound.

These regional differences in pronunciation can make it difficult for Spanish learners to understand and communicate effectively with native speakers from different countries. However, it’s important to embrace these differences and learn from them in order to become a more well-rounded Spanish speaker.

Other Uses Of The Spanish Word For “Tickling” In Speaking & Writing

Tickling is not just a physical sensation, but also a linguistic one. The Spanish word for “tickling,” cosquillas, can be used in various contexts beyond its literal meaning. To avoid confusion, it’s essential to understand the different uses of this word.

Slang And Idiomatic Expressions

In some Spanish-speaking countries, cosquillas is used as slang or in idiomatic expressions to convey a particular message. For instance:

  • ¡Me hacen cosquillas! – This expression means “They make me laugh” or “They amuse me.” It’s often used when someone says or does something funny.
  • Tener cosquillas en el bolsillo – Literally, “To have tickles in the pocket,” this expression means “To have money” or “To be wealthy.”
  • Hacerle cosquillas a alguien en el oído – This expression means “To whisper sweet nothings” or “To seduce someone.”

It’s worth noting that these expressions may not be familiar or appropriate in all Spanish-speaking regions. Therefore, it’s essential to be mindful of the context and the audience when using them.

Tickling As A Theme Or Metaphor

Cosquillas can also be used in literary or artistic works to convey a particular theme or metaphor. For example:

  • La cosquilla de la venganza – This phrase means “The tickle of revenge” and can be used to describe the feeling of satisfaction that comes from getting even with someone.
  • Las cosquillas del amor – This phrase means “The tickles of love” and can be used to describe the joy and excitement of being in love.
  • El cosquilleo de la incertidumbre – This phrase means “The tickling of uncertainty” and can be used to describe the feeling of unease or anxiety that comes from not knowing what will happen next.

When encountering these uses of cosquillas, it’s essential to consider the context and the intended meaning carefully. In some cases, the word may be used metaphorically or symbolically, and its literal meaning may not apply.

In conclusion, cosquillas may seem like a straightforward word, but its various uses and meanings in Spanish can be quite nuanced. By understanding the different contexts in which it can be used, you can communicate more effectively and avoid misunderstandings.

Common Words And Phrases Similar To The Spanish Word For “Tickling”

Synonyms And Related Terms

There are several words and phrases in Spanish that are similar to the word for “tickling.” Some of these include:

  • cosquillas
  • picazón
  • hormigueo
  • comezón

The most common of these is “cosquillas,” which is the direct translation of “tickling.” However, the other terms can also be used to describe a similar sensation.

“Picazón” is often used to describe an itchiness or irritation on the skin, while “hormigueo” refers to a tingling or prickling sensation. “Comezón” is a more general term for any kind of itchiness or irritation.

Differences In Usage

While these words are similar in meaning to “tickling,” they are not always used in the same way. For example, “cosquillas” is typically used to describe the sensation of someone being tickled by another person, while “picazón” and “comezón” are usually used to describe an itchiness or irritation caused by something else, such as an insect bite or allergic reaction.

“Hormigueo” is often used to describe a sensation that is more uncomfortable or even painful, such as when a limb falls asleep or when someone is experiencing nerve damage.


While there are no direct antonyms for the word “tickling,” there are several words and phrases in Spanish that can be used to describe the opposite sensation. Some of these include:

  • adormecimiento
  • insensibilidad
  • falta de sensación

These words are used to describe a lack of sensation or feeling, rather than a specific sensation like tickling.

Mistakes To Avoid When Using The Spanish Word For “Tickling”

When learning a new language, it’s common to make mistakes. Spanish is no exception. One word that non-native speakers often struggle with is the translation of “tickling.” While it may seem like a simple word, there are a few mistakes that can be made when using it in Spanish. In this section, we’ll highlight these mistakes and provide tips to avoid them.

Common Mistakes

Here are some of the most common mistakes that non-native speakers make when using the Spanish word for “tickling”:

  • Using the wrong verb tense
  • Mispronouncing the word
  • Using the wrong gender or number agreement
  • Translating the word too literally

Tips To Avoid Mistakes

To avoid these mistakes, here are some tips to keep in mind when using the Spanish word for “tickling”:

  1. Use the correct verb tense. The word for “tickling” in Spanish is “cosquillas.” It’s important to use the correct verb tense when using this word. For example, if you want to say “I tickled my sister,” you would say “Le hice cosquillas a mi hermana” instead of “Le hice cosquillo a mi hermana.”
  2. Pronounce the word correctly. The pronunciation of “cosquillas” can be tricky for non-native speakers. Make sure to practice the correct pronunciation to avoid confusion.
  3. Pay attention to gender and number agreement. In Spanish, adjectives and articles must agree in gender and number with the noun they modify. For example, if you want to say “The tickling sensation,” you would say “La sensación de cosquillas” instead of “El sensación de cosquillas.”
  4. Don’t translate the word too literally. The word “cosquillas” may not have a direct translation in English, so it’s important to understand the context in which it’s used. For example, if someone says “Me dan cosquillas,” they are not saying “They give me tickles,” but rather “They make me ticklish.”


In this blog post, we explored the question of how to say tickling in Spanish. We began by discussing the importance of understanding cultural differences when it comes to humor and physical touch. We then delved into the various words and phrases that can be used to describe tickling in Spanish, including cosquillas, hacer cosquillas, and hacerle cosquillas a alguien.

We also highlighted some of the nuances of these terms, such as the fact that cosquillas is a noun while hacer cosquillas is a verb. We also noted that hacerle cosquillas a alguien is a more specific way of saying “to tickle someone,” and that it is often used in a playful or flirtatious context.

Throughout the post, we emphasized the importance of practicing these phrases in real-life conversations, whether you are traveling to a Spanish-speaking country or simply interacting with Spanish-speaking friends or colleagues.

Encouragement To Practice

We encourage you to take the time to practice using these phrases in your own conversations. Whether you are trying to make a new friend or simply trying to break the ice with someone, knowing how to say tickling in Spanish can be a great way to show your playful side and connect with others.

Remember, language learning is a journey, and it takes time and effort to become fluent. But with practice and dedication, you can become confident in your ability to communicate effectively in Spanish.

So go ahead and try out some of these phrases the next time you find yourself in a ticklish situation. Who knows, you might just make someone laugh!

Shawn Manaher

Shawn Manaher is the founder and CEO of The Content Authority and He’s a seasoned innovator, harnessing the power of technology to connect cultures through language. His worse translation though is when he refers to “pancakes” as “flat waffles”.