10 Extremely Odd Superstitions Only South Koreans Believe In

Black cats and the number 13 are unlucky in the west—these are the superstitions Koreans believe in.

1. Slippery Foods

It’s said it’s best to avoid slippery foods like seaweed soup or noodles before exams because your knowledge will slip out of your brain. Instead, have some sticky foods, like glutinous rice.


2. Cutting your nails

Don’t trim your fingernails at night or suffer the oddly specific consequence of mice eating the clippings, then transforming into a human and taking your form or stealing your soul.


3. Whistling

Don’t whistle at night or you’ll summon snakes or ghosts, neither of which sound too pleasant before bed.


4. The number four

“Four” in Korean sounds like the word “death”, so it’s considered unlucky by many people. In fact, similar to the number 13 in North Americal, the 4th floor is even completely omitted from some buildings.


5. Moving

If you’re moving, be sure to move on a “day without evil spirits”; even large companies take this pretty seriously. Also, if it rains on your moving day, you’ll be rich.


6. Shoes

If you gift shoes to your significant other, it signifies that they will run away from you. If you do receive a shoe as a gift, pay the gifter a small amount of money so it’s not technically a gift.


7. Fan death

Fans may seem harmless, but there is a belief that having an electric fan on at night will kill you.


8. Shaking your leg

in Korea, shaking your leg translates to shaking off your good luck and wealth.


9. Babies

Don’t jump over any babies! Aside from the obvious safety concerns, it’s believed that jumping over a baby will prevent them from growing.


10. Chicken wings

If you give your boyfriend or husband chicken wings, he might “fly” away.