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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Casper Libero chapter.

Occupying top #5 on the Brazilian charts within two weeks of release, Luísa Sonza, one of the biggest artists in the country right now, has just put out to the world her new album, Escândalo Íntimo. It has surprised her fans with the newest hit “Penhasco2”, a feat with the worldwide known superstar, Demi Lovato, who has also happened to launch a new record this past week.

Besides being announced unexpectedly, what was really shocking, but still fascinating, about the collab was the fact that Demi sang a verse in PORTUGUESE. Because, guess what? SAUDADE has no translation!

Promotion for the music video of “Penhasco2”

If analyzed shallowly, the specific part given to the North American singer to deliver can be perceived as someone missing its significant other and not being able to translate that emotion, but what makes this even better, and genius, is that the word chosen literally does not exist in any other language. That way, only Portuguese speakers are able to recognize the double meaning, and I think that’s beautiful. 

So, with this in mind, check out other 10 expressions that also don’t have translations to other idioms, and contributes to make Brazilian Portuguese such the beautiful and unique language that it is.


As previously mentioned, it is the feeling of missing something or someone badly. It can also be explained as the sensation of nostalgia, but deepier. 

Brazilians are usually very emotional driven people, so it does make sense that they are the only ones that came up with a term that states one of the strongest feelings to exist in the world.


Probably what Luísa Sonza calls her boyfriend, Chico! It is a pet name for your partner, the way that you can call someone special, or a nickname with the intention of demonstrating love and affection, in a very cliché way.


Still talking about passion and care, “cafuné” is the act of scratching someone’s head gently. It’s a term that sums up in one word the action of running your fingers through someone’s hair, for example, and the universal gesture that indicates tenderness for Brazilian people.


The dream of every student after classes, more known as packed lunch.

This influencer dilvulges her marmita sales business on TikTok.


The smell may be universal, but the word for it is not. We are talking about stinky feet.


What Demi did while singing in Portuguese! It’s the word that explains doing something in a meticulous and perfect way, paying attention to all the details.


@Luísa Sonza and I love you Brazil 🖤

♬ Penhasco2 – Luísa Sonza & Demi Lovato
Check out Demi’s and Luísa’s performance.


Basically, a skin lesion called in a funny way.


Someone smart and strategic, but not always in a good way. A person who is “malandro” can be considered as mischievous and a cheater. In Brazil, people would say that “malandro” is the cat! The reason for that is explained by the bad reputation that cats have, since they’re not the most trustful animals out there. (According to Brazilian popular saying, it is also because they are already born with a mustache).


 It is a part of Brazilian culture to solve problems quickly, to work smart and not hard, and sometimes that leaves us with some inventions that not even NASA is capable of explaining. In other words, it is an improvised solution to a situation of emergency.


If you feel heat more intensely than other people, just know that you are “calorento”. The same goes to someone that feels cold, but, in this case, it’s called “friorento”. 

After we “named the oxen” (there are so many good expressions), it is easy to realize how amazing this language is when it comes to verbalizing in the greatest way what you want to say. With all of its peculiarities, Portuguese can be one of the hardest languages to learn and become fluent in, but it’s worth it when you really understand all the funny and intense ways that Brazilians find to express themselves. 

The article above was edited by Rafaella Alcici.
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Emile Vithorya

Casper Libero '26

Audiovisual communication student at Cásper Líbero, who loves reading, writing and if you see me, I'll probably be taking pictures or recording something :)