I asked a question about 눈치 and have a good understanding of what it means.

센스 is another word that I understand as well but what would be a good way to differentiate between the 2?

눈치 없다 - has no awareness or doesnt pick up on social cues, environment

센스 없다 - has no sense, not in the English meaning, but doesn't have the capacity or understanding to figure out a good course of action in whatever circumstance

Things like using non-honorifics to elders have been used to describe something with no 눈치.

I was once told that I had no 센스 when it comes to taking pictures.

Would these be accurate definitions or is there a better way differentiate the 2? In my eyes, while they aren't 100% interchangeable, they do have similarities to where if you used one over the other, I would still know what someone meant.


2 Answers 2


센스 is a more general term for the ability to "understand the situation" or "make a good choice", especially when it's hard to explain logically. I think 눈치 is more exclusive to "reading other people's feeling" (or "reading the atmosphere").

So, for example, if a person is good at real estate investment, we may say "저 사람 집을 고르는 센스가 있다." (He/she knows how to pick a good house.) You can't use 눈치 here: the person is not trying to read how you feel about it.

I think it can also mean "common sense". If someone lacks common sense and does something awkward/idiotic, you can say "넌 왜 그렇게 센스가 없냐?"

  • Colloquially, 개념 (originally "concept") is also used in a similar way, though I think it's stronger. To me, 센스가 없다 is something like wearing a pair of sandals with socks on a date. 개념이 없다 is something like running red light in front of a kindergarten. Finally, 눈치가 없다 is like staying late in a party of three when the other two are clearly trying to hit it off.
  • 1
    appreciate the explanation, that makes a lot of sense
    – mph85
    Jun 13, 2019 at 4:07
  • 개념 is a stronger version of 센스 then? kinda like hate is a stronger version of dislike?
    – mph85
    Jun 13, 2019 at 4:08
  • These things can be tricky (and change from speaker to speaker), but my take is: you can be a good person without 센스, but if you don't have 개념, you aren't a good person. Hope it makes sense (ha ha) for you.
    – jick
    Jun 13, 2019 at 6:07
  • 센스 relates to one's behaviour that gives positive impressions to others; 개념, to norms and manners. They are not interchangeable.
    – Klmo
    Jun 14, 2019 at 4:34

눈치 is a major factor to be a usual person

센스 is one factor to be a superior better than a usual person

1) When we meet for a photo, then we should wear a neat style. But if someone wear a gym suit (i.e. he did not make an effort), then he has no tact. Further, if some makes a grimace, then he has no tact. When someone has a dance dress or makes V-shape fingers, then he has a sense.

2) 그애 센스가 장난 아니다 His sense is not a simple act = He has a terrific sense (so that almost girl draw a romance with him)

@ 그애 센스가 장난 아니다. He is grotesque (for instance, he wear Halloween costume at Christmas)

3) 눈치밥 먹어서 눈치 많이 봐 He walks on eggshells, since he received a lot of scolds (=he ate a rice of scolds).

@ When he has no tact, then he would have a lot of difficulties during army duty period or at workplace. When he have no sense, then I suggest that he would be a officer man, but not entertainer.

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