Odd Word Japanese Use: Volumy

Japanese have their own way with English, for sure. They not only adopt English into their Katakana vocabulary, but also improvise new English-like words which make totally no sense. I, however, have no offense against them despite the amusing feeling they cause.

One example is the word: ボリューミー  = VOLUMY. Right as I typed the English spelling out, an alarming red line came under it. You could find it no where in any dictionary, which means in the English speaking world it is not recognized.

Japanese people use the word to express the plenty in volume of something with a little sense of feminine cuteness. For example, restaurants often advertise courses for ladies as “volumy“, but none for men ever quoted. There is also a product line of lipstick that assures girls with “water shiny volumy” lips. Perhaps, I guess, they want to refer to Angelina Jolie’s.

When I asked my friend, he thought “volumy” was originally an English word. Of course, he was taken aback by the fact that it is a Made-in-Japan. As for me, the word represents how language changes over time, reflecting how people try to express certain new concepts; thus, I find it funny and odd but no detestable. Who knows one day it may make it way into the Oxford dictionary like the pure Japanese “skosh“!

It would be great if I could receive opinions from English speakers about this word. Have you ever heard of it, or used it? I am very eager to hear your thoughts.


P.S: when I searched about the word “volumy” the first result was a Japanese porn site so voluptuous with volumy boobs and… uhm… stuffs. haha


5 thoughts on “Odd Word Japanese Use: Volumy

  1. Nice post. I wrote an article about tricky Japanese loanwords that have different meanings from English but missed this one. I’ve heard the word ボリューム used to refer to food portion, but that’s pretty close to the English definition.

    1. Thank you for the comment.
      Yeah, you can use it to refer to any portion just like in English. Japanese are just too creative they morph a cutie adjective out of the word. And the pronunciation creates a sense of “a little much in portion but not too much”, don’t you think?

  2. My Japanese wife just asked me if this is a real word, i had to check. I told her the correct word would be voluminous and i believe this is correct. But hey, volumy probably works too!

  3. Thank you for the article. I came across this word in a Japanese video and I thought it should be spelled as “volumy” instead of “volumey”, so I googled it and found out it’s not an actual English lol.

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