Top 37 Slang For Not Intelligent – Meaning & Usage

When it comes to discussing intelligence, sometimes a little humor can go a long way. In this listicle, we’ve gathered some of the most amusing and colorful slang terms used to playfully describe someone who may not be the sharpest tool in the shed. Whether you’re looking to expand your vocabulary or simply have a good laugh, we’ve got you covered with this compilation of slang for not intelligent. So, buckle up and get ready to explore the lighter side of language!

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1. Airhead

This term is used to describe someone who is perceived as being foolish, scatterbrained, or lacking in intelligence. It often implies that the person is more focused on superficial or trivial matters rather than being mentally sharp.

  • For example, “She’s such an airhead, she can never remember where she left her keys.”
  • In a conversation about a forgetful friend, someone might say, “He’s a total airhead when it comes to remembering important dates.”
  • A person might use this term to describe themselves humorously, “I’m such an airhead, I always forget to bring an umbrella when it’s raining.”

2. Birdbrain

This term refers to someone who is perceived as being unintelligent or having a lack of common sense. It compares the person’s mental capacity to that of a bird, implying that they have a small brain or limited intellectual capabilities.

  • For instance, “Don’t listen to him, he’s just a birdbrain who can’t solve simple math problems.”
  • In a discussion about a person who consistently makes foolish decisions, someone might say, “She’s a total birdbrain, she never thinks things through.”
  • A parent might playfully tease their child, “You little birdbrain, how did you manage to lose your shoes again?”

3. Dumb as a rock

This phrase is used to describe someone who is perceived as being incredibly stupid or lacking in intelligence. It compares the person’s mental capacity to that of a rock, implying that they have no cognitive abilities.

  • For example, “He’s as dumb as a rock, he can’t even tie his own shoelaces.”
  • In a conversation about a person who consistently makes foolish mistakes, someone might say, “She’s dumb as a rock, she never learns from her errors.”
  • A frustrated teacher might exclaim, “I’ve never seen a student as dumb as a rock, it’s like they’re not even trying!”

4. Thick as a brick

This phrase is used to describe someone who is perceived as being incredibly stupid or lacking in intelligence. It compares the person’s mental capacity to that of a brick, implying that they have no cognitive abilities.

  • For instance, “He’s as thick as a brick, he can’t understand even the simplest instructions.”
  • In a discussion about a person who consistently fails to grasp basic concepts, someone might say, “She’s thick as a brick, she can’t even solve basic math problems.”
  • A frustrated coworker might mutter, “I can’t believe I have to work with someone as thick as a brick, it’s so frustrating!”

5. Dimwit

This term is used to describe someone who is perceived as being unintelligent or lacking in common sense. It implies that the person has a dull or dim mind, suggesting a lack of mental sharpness.

  • For example, “Don’t ask him for help, he’s a complete dimwit when it comes to technology.”
  • In a conversation about a person who consistently makes foolish decisions, someone might say, “She’s such a dimwit, she never thinks things through.”
  • A friend might playfully tease their buddy, “You’re such a dimwit, how did you manage to get lost in your own neighborhood?”

6. Knucklehead

A knucklehead is a person who is considered foolish or stupid. It is often used in a lighthearted or playful manner.

  • For example, a friend might say, “You forgot your keys again, you knucklehead!”
  • In a comedy movie, a character might be called a knucklehead for their silly antics.
  • A teacher might use the term to scold a student who made a careless mistake.

7. Numbskull

A numbskull is someone who is perceived to lack intelligence or common sense. It is a slightly stronger term than knucklehead and is often used in a more critical or exasperated tone.

  • For instance, a frustrated parent might say, “You’re such a numbskull! Can’t you see what you’re doing is dangerous?”
  • In a heated argument, one person might insult the other by calling them a numbskull.
  • A boss might use the term to express disappointment in an employee’s poor decision-making.

8. Pea brain

Pea brain is a slang term used to describe someone who is thought to have a small or limited brain, implying that they lack intelligence or are not very smart.

  • For example, a sibling might tease their brother by saying, “You can’t figure that out? What a pea brain!”
  • In a group discussion, someone might dismiss another person’s idea by saying, “That’s a pea-brained suggestion.”
  • A teacher might use the term to describe a student who consistently struggles with understanding concepts.
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9. Dullard

A dullard is someone who is considered slow-witted or unintelligent. It suggests a lack of mental sharpness or quick thinking.

  • For instance, a frustrated coworker might mutter, “Why did they hire such a dullard?”
  • In a comedy routine, a comedian might make jokes about being a dullard.
  • A teacher might use the term to describe a student who consistently fails to grasp basic concepts.

10. Ignoramus

An ignoramus is a person who is regarded as lacking knowledge or being uninformed. It is often used to describe someone who is willfully ignorant or refuses to educate themselves.

  • For example, a person might say, “Don’t listen to him, he’s an ignoramus when it comes to politics.”
  • In a debate, one person might insult the other by calling them an ignoramus.
  • A teacher might use the term to criticize a student who consistently fails to do their homework or study.

11. Lamebrain

Lamebrain is a derogatory term used to describe someone who is lacking in intelligence or common sense. It suggests that the person’s brain is not functioning properly or is “lame”.

  • For example, “Don’t listen to him, he’s just a lamebrain.”
  • A frustrated parent might say, “My teenager can be such a lamebrain sometimes.”
  • In a joking manner, a friend might tease, “You forgot your keys again? You’re such a lamebrain!”

12. Nitwit

Nitwit is a term used to refer to someone who is foolish or lacking in intelligence. It implies that the person has a “nit” or small amount of wit.

  • For instance, “I can’t believe he made such a nitwit decision.”
  • A teacher might scold a student by saying, “Stop acting like a nitwit and pay attention.”
  • In a lighthearted conversation, a friend might playfully say, “You’re such a nitwit sometimes!”

13. Simpleton

Simpleton is a derogatory term used to describe someone who is perceived as lacking intelligence or common sense. It suggests that the person is simple or uncomplicated in their thinking.

  • For example, “He’s a simpleton who can’t understand even the simplest concepts.”
  • A frustrated coworker might say, “I can’t believe I have to explain this to that simpleton.”
  • In a teasing manner, a friend might say, “You’re such a lovable simpleton!”

14. Blockhead

Blockhead is a term used to describe someone who is perceived as stupid or foolish. It implies that the person has a head that is as hard as a block, symbolizing their lack of intelligence.

  • For instance, “I can’t believe I have to work with such a blockhead.”
  • A parent might scold their child by saying, “Stop being a blockhead and think before you act.”
  • In a playful conversation, a friend might jokingly say, “You’re such a blockhead, but that’s why I love you!”

15. Dolt

Dolt is a term used to describe someone who is considered an idiot or a fool. It suggests that the person is slow-witted or lacking in intelligence.

  • For example, “He’s such a dolt, he can’t even tie his own shoelaces.”
  • A teacher might express frustration by saying, “I can’t believe I have to deal with these dolts every day.”
  • In a friendly banter, a coworker might playfully say, “You’re a dolt, but you’re my favorite dolt!”

16. Lunkhead

This term is used to describe someone who is not very intelligent or lacks common sense. It can be used playfully or as an insult.

  • For example, “He’s such a lunkhead, he can never figure out simple math problems.”
  • In a conversation about someone’s clumsy actions, one might say, “I can’t believe he tripped over his own feet again. What a lunkhead.”
  • A person might jokingly refer to themselves as a lunkhead when they make a silly mistake, saying, “Oops, I locked my keys in the car again. I’m such a lunkhead.”

17. Bonehead

This slang term is used to describe someone who is foolish, stupid, or lacking intelligence. It can be used in a light-hearted manner or as an insult.

  • For instance, “He made another bonehead move and spilled coffee all over his laptop.”
  • When discussing someone’s poor decision-making, one might say, “Only a bonehead would think it’s a good idea to go swimming in a thunderstorm.”
  • A person might use this term to describe themselves when they do something silly, saying, “I forgot my own phone number. I’m such a bonehead.”

18. Dunderhead

This term is used to describe someone who is slow-witted or unintelligent. It is often used humorously or as a lighthearted insult.

  • For example, “He’s such a dunderhead, he can never remember anyone’s name.”
  • When discussing someone’s lack of common sense, one might say, “You have to be a real dunderhead to think that’s a good idea.”
  • A person might jokingly refer to themselves as a dunderhead when they make a silly mistake, saying, “I accidentally put salt instead of sugar in my coffee. I’m such a dunderhead.”

19. Knuckle-dragger

This slang term is used to describe someone who is perceived as unintelligent or lacking sophistication. It implies a primitive or brute-like nature.

  • For instance, “He’s such a knuckle-dragger, he can barely string a sentence together.”
  • When discussing someone’s outdated or regressive views, one might say, “Only a knuckle-dragger would believe that nonsense.”
  • A person might use this term to describe themselves humorously when they struggle with a simple task, saying, “I can’t figure out how to open this jar. I’m such a knuckle-dragger.”

20. Thickhead

This term is used to describe someone who is slow-witted or lacking intelligence. It can be used playfully or as an insult.

  • For example, “He’s such a thickhead, he can’t understand basic instructions.”
  • When discussing someone’s inability to grasp a concept, one might say, “You have to be a real thickhead to not understand how to use a smartphone.”
  • A person might jokingly refer to themselves as a thickhead when they make a silly mistake, saying, “I accidentally put my shirt on inside out. I’m such a thickhead.”

21. Chump

This term is used to describe someone who is easily deceived or gullible. It implies that the person lacks intelligence or common sense.

  • For example, “Don’t be such a chump and fall for that scam.”
  • In a conversation about someone making a foolish mistake, one might say, “He really pulled a chump move.”
  • Someone might mockingly say, “Look at that chump trying to solve a simple math problem.”

22. Dumbbell

This slang term compares someone to a dumbbell, a weight used for exercise. It implies that the person lacks intelligence or is slow-witted.

  • For instance, “He’s such a dumbbell for forgetting his keys again.”
  • In a discussion about someone making a silly mistake, one might say, “What a dumbbell move.”
  • Someone might use the term to playfully tease a friend, saying, “You’re such a dumbbell sometimes.”

23. Halfwit

This term is used to describe someone who is not very bright or clever. It suggests that the person has only half of the wit or intelligence that is expected.

  • For example, “He’s a halfwit if he thinks he can get away with that.”
  • In a conversation about a person struggling with a simple task, one might say, “What a halfwit.”
  • Someone might use the term to express frustration with someone’s lack of understanding, saying, “I can’t believe I have to explain it to that halfwit.”

24. Numskull

This term is used to describe someone who is not very smart or intelligent. It suggests that the person has a skull filled with nothing but numbness or lack of intelligence.

  • For instance, “He’s such a numskull for not realizing the consequences.”
  • In a discussion about someone making a ridiculous mistake, one might say, “What a numskull.”
  • Someone might use the term to express disbelief at someone’s lack of common sense, saying, “I can’t believe that numskull thought it was a good idea.”

25. Pea-brain

This term is used to describe someone who has a small or insignificant amount of intelligence. It suggests that the person’s brain is as small as a pea, implying a lack of intelligence.

  • For example, “Don’t listen to him, he’s just a pea-brain.”
  • In a conversation about someone struggling with basic concepts, one might say, “He’s a real pea-brain.”
  • Someone might use the term to playfully tease a friend, saying, “You’re such a pea-brain sometimes.”

26. Thicko

A derogatory term used to describe someone who is not intelligent. “Thicko” implies that the person is slow-witted or lacking in mental capacity.

  • For example, “Don’t bother asking him for help, he’s such a thicko.”
  • In a conversation about someone’s poor decision-making, one might say, “Only a thicko would think that’s a good idea.”
  • A person might jokingly refer to themselves as a thicko when they make a silly mistake, saying, “Oops, I did it again. I’m such a thicko.”

27. Meathead

A slang term used to describe someone who is not intelligent and often perceived as being physically strong but mentally lacking. “Meathead” suggests that the person relies on their physical strength rather than their intelligence.

  • For instance, “He may be a great athlete, but he’s a total meathead.”
  • In a discussion about stereotypes, one might say, “People often assume that bodybuilders are all meatheads.”
  • A person might use the term meathead to describe someone who consistently makes foolish decisions, saying, “I can’t believe he did that. What a meathead.”

28. Pinhead

A derogatory term used to describe someone who is not intelligent, often implying that they have a small brain or lack mental capacity. “Pinhead” suggests that the person has a limited ability to think or understand.

  • For example, “I can’t believe I have to explain this to you, you pinhead.”
  • In a conversation about someone’s lack of common sense, one might say, “He’s such a pinhead, it’s a wonder he can function.”
  • A person might use the term pinhead jokingly to refer to themselves when they make a silly mistake, saying, “Oops, I did it again. I’m such a pinhead.”

29. Yokel

A slang term used to describe someone from a rural area who is perceived as being unsophisticated or lacking in intelligence. “Yokel” often carries a connotation of being naive or ignorant due to a lack of exposure to urban or modern ways of life.

  • For instance, “He may be a yokel, but he knows a thing or two about farming.”
  • In a discussion about stereotypes, one might say, “People often assume that yokels are backward or uneducated.”
  • A person might use the term yokel to describe someone who is easily fooled or deceived, saying, “Don’t trust him, he’s a yokel.”

30. Thick as two short planks

A phrase used to describe someone who is exceptionally unintelligent or lacking in common sense. “Thick as two short planks” implies that the person’s mental capacity is equivalent to that of two small, thick pieces of wood.

  • For example, “I tried explaining it to him, but he’s as thick as two short planks.”
  • In a conversation about someone’s inability to grasp a simple concept, one might say, “I’ve never met anyone as thick as two short planks.”
  • A person might use the phrase jokingly to refer to themselves when they make a particularly foolish mistake, saying, “I can’t believe I did that. I’m as thick as two short planks.”

31. Clod

This term is used to describe someone who is foolish or unintelligent. It suggests that the person is dull-witted or lacking in common sense.

  • For example, “He couldn’t figure out how to turn on the computer. What a clod!”
  • In a conversation about someone’s poor decision-making, one might say, “Only a clod would think that was a good idea.”
  • A person might describe themselves as a clod when recounting a silly mistake, saying, “I felt like such a clod when I realized I was wearing mismatched shoes.”

32. Half-wit

This term refers to a person who lacks intelligence or is considered to be foolish. It suggests that the person’s mental capacity is only half of what is considered normal.

  • For instance, “He couldn’t solve the simplest math problem. What a half-wit!”
  • In a discussion about someone’s inability to grasp a concept, one might say, “He’s a complete half-wit when it comes to technology.”
  • A person might use this term to describe themselves when recounting a moment of absent-mindedness, saying, “I felt like such a half-wit when I couldn’t find my car keys in my pocket.”

33. Knobhead

This term is used to insult someone by suggesting they are unintelligent or foolish. It is a derogatory term that implies the person has a head shaped like a knob, which is a rounded protuberance.

  • For example, “He forgot his own birthday. What a knobhead!”
  • In a conversation about someone’s incompetence, one might say, “I can’t believe I have to work with that knobhead.”
  • A person might use this term to describe themselves when admitting to a silly mistake, saying, “I felt like such a knobhead when I tripped over my own feet.”

34. Muttonhead

This term is used to describe someone who is foolish or lacks intelligence. It suggests that the person’s brain is as small and useless as the head of a sheep.

  • For instance, “He couldn’t understand the simplest instructions. What a muttonhead!”
  • In a discussion about someone’s poor decision-making, one might say, “Only a muttonhead would think that was a good idea.”
  • A person might describe themselves as a muttonhead when recounting a moment of confusion, saying, “I felt like such a muttonhead when I couldn’t find my glasses on top of my head.”

35. Dope

This term is used to describe someone who is not intelligent or lacks common sense. It implies that the person is slow-witted or ignorant.

  • For example, “He couldn’t understand the simplest concept. What a dope!”
  • In a conversation about someone’s foolish behavior, one might say, “I can’t believe she fell for that scam. What a dope.”
  • A person might use this term to describe themselves when admitting to a moment of forgetfulness, saying, “I felt like such a dope when I left my phone at home.”

36. Dumbo

This term is derived from the Disney character Dumbo, a young elephant who is portrayed as naive and easily manipulated. It is used to describe someone who lacks intelligence or common sense.

  • For example, “He forgot his keys at home again? What a dumbo!”
  • In a group discussion, someone might say, “Don’t be a dumbo, read the instructions before starting.”
  • A teacher might use this term to scold a student who made a silly mistake, saying, “You need to pay attention in class, dumbo!”

37. Goofball

This term refers to someone who acts in a silly or foolish manner, often making others laugh or shake their heads in disbelief. It is used to describe someone who lacks intelligence or common sense.

  • For instance, “He tripped over his own feet again. What a goofball!”
  • In a lighthearted conversation, a friend might say, “You’re such a goofball, always making us laugh.”
  • A parent might affectionately refer to their child as a goofball, saying, “My little goofball always keeps me on my toes.”