I'm reading the book 喜欢你,我也是, and I encountered this:



(A sample text containing this part is here.)

I understand 张侃侃 has received a text message from 谈晋 who says he has a cold. 张看看 says she's not his doctor and also not his 白加黑 (lit.: "white add black").

I didn't find a clear definition of 白加黑 in a dictionary; Baidu Baike suggests it's a kind of medicine (which is on sale at JingDong; image), so I'd guess this is a brand name that's so popular that it's used to mean 感冒药 ("cold medicine"). I'm hoping this can be confirmed, corrected, expanded upon, etc.

Question: Is 白加黑 ("white add black") slang for 感冒药 ("cold medicine")?

  • I'd guess this is a brand name that's so popular that it's used to mean 感冒药 ("cold medicine"). Yes.
    – user4072
    Commented Apr 27, 2020 at 7:47
  • When a brand name is genericised.
    – Michaelyus
    Commented Apr 27, 2020 at 11:28

2 Answers 2



It is not so much a slang but a general term for cold medicine. When a brand is so popular, people would use it to describe the product itself, like 公仔麵 (instant noodle) and 花奶 (evaporated milk) in Hong Kong


enter image description here


enter image description here


enter image description here


The drug formulation was marketed under that name White Plus Black label in 1996 and apparently was sold to Bayer in 2008. Bayer then used the brand to launch their other stuff in China.

So yes, that is basically cold medicine in China, it was so dominant, that Baidu has an entry on it:


Though your original link was actually for Bayer's Aspirina C, the effervescent aspirin + vitamin C tablet, marketed in China under the "white plus black" label.

Ingredients seem to be comparable to Nyquil Day+Nyquil in tablet form, basically acetaminophen and pseudoephedrine.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

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