Chinese Language Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for students, teachers, and linguists wanting to discuss the finer points of the Chinese language. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I do hear people say that a lot to me in China and I am always surprised by the timings and situations in which people just, kind of bluntly I feel, say this. I wonder what all those situations would be where someone could say that to you and why it's been said so often, it seems prioritized to saying some other, more proper things (I believe) sometimes (as if appearance is the most important thing "to talk about and mention", giving it a lot of priority.)

share|improve this question

In my experience, 帥哥 is more addressed to refer to young people. It's like "Hey young man" in English. No matter what, being young is a beauty. People call the young generation 帥哥 in memory of their own long passed golden youth years.

share|improve this answer
" People call the young generation 帥哥 in memory of their own long passed golden youth years. " That's just your imagination unfortunately. The youth use the term among themselves, so your theory doesn't quite apply. – deutschZuid May 28 '14 at 21:31
Youth = beauty applies to every society, i.e. all people. – user76935 Jun 4 '14 at 21:30
Thanks for the comments! I did mention 帥哥 is "more" addressed to refer to young people. I didn't want to be arbitrary. It's just in my own real life experience in a Chinese-speaking country for more than 30 years, NOT THEORY! I admit that language is spoken by people and its usage varies depending on different people and different contexts. – Jun 5 '14 at 1:54

帥哥 is just a noun commonly use in Taiwan and sometimes in China. It have the same meaning to "sir"(not Madam!!), but more causal way to greet someone. You can also use it to a stranger as more polite and respect. Normally you won't use the 帥哥 to a friend or family.

share|improve this answer

帥哥 (shuai ge), though it literally means "handsome", has nothing to do with one's appearance. It's just a polite way for addressing a young person.

Any situation, in English, where one might say "guy" or "gal" can be replaced by this. So, anytime you may want to draw someone's attention or someone else may want to draw your attention, you could just use 帥哥.

share|improve this answer
Thanks. My understanding thusfar was that it was a flattering term for something to do with handsome. I do wonder, though, when I address my Chinese friend like this, why he often directly replies: “我不帥吧”... – user76935 May 27 '14 at 10:10
Maybe he's playing with you. In restaurants you can call the waiters 帅哥 aswell to get their attention. – user3306356 May 27 '14 at 10:17
I didn't get that from what he said, though. "Hey, mate, how are you?" And he would say: "I am not a mate!". “嗨帥哥,你好嗎?”他說:“我不帥吧” What is the playing here? That "he" is secretely a "she", transgender?? – user76935 May 27 '14 at 10:23
And what's the difference then if you want to address someone who you actually think looks handsome? – user76935 May 27 '14 at 10:26
You can't replace "madam" with "帥哥"!! It is only for male!! – Red2awn May 27 '14 at 10:36

Meaning: handsome guy.

Frequency: females use this word, males seldom use it.

3 situations.

  1. A literally handsome guy;

  2. Greeting, commonly used in market;

  3. Humour, to exaggerate the ugliness of a guy.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.