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3 Chinese slang terms for expressing looks

颜值.png


1. 小鲜肉 xiǎo xiān ròu

Literally meaning "fresh little meat", this phrase describes those young, cute, handsome and innocent male idols, roughly between the ages of 12 and 25. Originally, it was used on celebrities, but now it can refer to ordinary guys as well, as long as they fit the criteria.

“小鲜肉”英文字面意思为“fresh little meat”,指年龄为12到25岁之间的年轻、英俊、可爱无邪的男性偶像。小鲜肉原用于指明星,现也指符合这些标准的普通男性。


Firstly, let's look at the character breakdown:

首先,我们来看一下这个词的结构:


小xiǎo: means that one should be young and energetic. The average age should be 25.

“小”对应的就是年轻有活力。平均年龄在25岁左右。

鲜 xiān: indicates that one has not been through many relationships

“鲜”对应的就是情感经历比较少。

肉ròu : refers to strong muscle, which makes someone looks healthy.

“肉”对应的就是健硕的肌肉,给人很健康的感觉。


To qualify as this, a young man needs to have good skin as well as six-pack abs. Usually, it is similar to the American slang term "hunk".

成为小鲜肉的条件是必须皮肤好,而且有健硕的肌肉。小鲜肉和美语中的“hunk”意思很相近。


小鲜肉have a large number of fans and the movies starred by them have made tremendous achievements commercially.

小鲜肉吸引了大批年轻粉丝,由小鲜肉们主演的电影也收获了商业上的巨大成功。


The "Tiny Times" trilogy, produced by author-turned-director Guo Jingming, grossed 1.3 billion yuan in the past two years, outselling many Hollywood blockbusters.

由作家郭敬明导演的《小时代》电影三部曲在过去两年总共赚得13亿,超过了许多好莱坞大片。


The rom-com "Miss Granny: Back to 20", led by heartthrob Lu Han, earned 360 million yuan. The initial investment for the film was about 20 million yuan.

由鹿晗主演的浪漫喜剧片《重返20岁》票房达3.6亿元。而这部电影的投资大约为2000万元。


For Rao Shuguang, secretary general of the China Film Association, fresh meat fever reflects a demographic change in Chinese moviegoers. With fast economic growth, more and more young people are willing to pay to go to the theater, and filmmakers have been quick to meet their demands, according to Rao.

中国电影家协会秘书长饶曙光表示,小鲜肉热反映了中国电影观众人口结构的变化。随着经济的快速发展,越来越多的年轻人愿意走进影院,电影制片人也迅速满足观众的要求。

 

2. 颜值 yán zhí
It is one of the hottest buzzwords in Chinese. Literally, "颜" means "appearance" and "值" is short for "数值" (numerical value; figure); So the word basically means "appearance score". The higher someone's 颜值 is, the more beautiful/pretty/handsome he or she is.

“颜值”是最热门的词之一。“颜”的意思是指“外貌”,“值”则是“数值(numerical value; figure)”的简称。因此,该词的基本意思为“外貌分值”。一个人颜值越高,则越漂亮/英俊。


例如: 她被赞颜值爆表。
She is extremely beautiful.
(Literal meaning: She is praised for her extreme beauty, as the numerical value of her face goes off the charts.)

(字面意思:她被赞极其漂亮,外貌分值都超过了仪表指针极限)


3. 明明可以靠脸吃饭,却偏偏要靠实力
kě yǐ kào liǎn chī fàn què piān piān yào kào shí lì

This slangy expression comes from Chinese comedian Jia Ling (贾玲). Chinese netizens accidently found an old photo of Jia Ling's, in which she looked young and pretty, quite different from her current appearance. When netizens discussed the photo, she relied wittily on her weibo, "我深情地演绎: 明明可以靠脸吃饭,却偏偏要靠才华。" (My story indicates: I could totally live on my good looks, but I chose to rely on my talent.) Due to its humor, the sentence became very popular on the Internet. Since then, it has been widely used to describe those who succeed at what they do by merit rather than by looks.

这一俚语出自中国喜剧演员贾玲。中国网友偶然发现了贾玲旧时照片,照片中她年轻美丽,和现在大不相同。网友纷纷讨论,贾玲在微博中机智回应“我深情地演绎了:明明可以靠脸吃饭,偏偏要靠才华” (英译:My story indicates: I could totally live on my good looks, but I chose to rely on my talent)。此后,由于其幽默的回答,这句话迅速在网络上流行开来,被广泛用于描述那些靠自己的才华而非相貌取得成功的人。

2016-06-21

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