I am looking for an English term for "厚脸皮". The best I can get from the web is "a thick skin". As "厚脸皮" connotes derogatory and could be used as an insult sometimes, can "a thick skin" convey the same thing?

Are there some other terms which could be more appropriate for it?

  • 2
    other terms: brazen, shameless, impudent, cheeky,
    – user6065
    Commented Sep 17, 2017 at 9:18
  • regarding"callous" (see answer) see jukuu: 冷酷 心硬 and 83 samples (2,14,35,36,39,45, referring to 结老茧 as in callous hands) some others: 毫不关心、无情,冷若冰霜,冷漠,无动于衷,铁石心肠,冷血无情,麻木不仁,全无心肝,不近人情,毫无怜悯、but no 厚脸皮, also among jukuu's 38 samples for 厚脸皮 there is none with "callous" in the translation
    – user6065
    Commented Sep 17, 2017 at 19:00

2 Answers 2


The term is "thick-skinned"


Someone who is thick-skinned does not appear to be easily hurt by criticism:

"Thick-skinned" synonym


callous : insensitive; indifferent

"Thick-skinned" is the best translation for "厚脸皮". Both can be neutral or derogatory

Note: '厚顏無恥' (brazen) - 'Thick-skinned and shameless' is definitely derogatory


cheeky:Ex: You're getting far too cheeky! Ex: You did that on purpose, you cheeky little devil! Ex: Now don't be cheeky to your elders, young woman.

gall: Ex: the bank had the gall to demand a fee.

chutzpah: Ex: “has the chutzpah to claim a lock on God and morality” – New York Times Ex: It took a lot of chutzpah to talk to your boss like that.

nerve: Ex: You have a lot of nerve. Ex: You've got some nerve! Ex: she's got a nerve wearing that short skirt with those legs.

have the neck to do sth.: Probably BrE No written evidence is provided in the New Oxford English Dictionary

hide: Ex: 'I'm sorry I called you a pig.' 'My hide's thick enough; it didn't bother me.'

bold-faced: Ex: a bold-faced lie. Ex: He had the bold-faced effrontery to ask for a raise.

  • Great summary! Compared with thick-skinned or have a thick skin, are these terms idiomatic? I'd like to know which one(s) is natural and idiomatic.
    – dan
    Commented Sep 18, 2017 at 7:51

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