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Jolie laide

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Jolie laide (French pronunciation: ​[ʒɔli lɛd]; literally, "beautiful-ugly") is a French expression used to describe someone, usually a female, who is unconventionally beautiful. Features associated with such a concept include a snaggle tooth, a prominent nose, closely-set eyes, under eye "bags", messy hair, and so on.

It is unclear when and where the term arose in French culture. One hypothesis surmises that the term originates from Serge Gainsbourg's song Laide Jolie Laide.[1] Gainsbourg's daughter, Charlotte Gainsbourg, has been described as "jolie laide", with her "melancholic air and the vaguely awkward way she inhabits her lanky body".[1] The late Isabella Blow has also been described by this term.[2]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Ollivier, Debra (2010). What French Women Know: About Love, Sex, and Other Matters of the Heart and Mind. USA: Berkley Trade. p. 272. ISBN 042523648X. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  2. Larocca, Amy (15 May 2007). "The Sad Hatter". New York Magazine.

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