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What Makes a Model ‘Jolie Laide’? (Forum Buzz)

"Jolie laide" is French and translates to "pretty ugly." Not as in "quite ugly," but something described as pretty and ugly. Or pretty in spite of being ugly? TheFashionSpot forum members debated over this question when trying to apply the term to top models who don’t quite fit the criteria of being conventionally beautiful. According to some members, quirky beauties are a staple on runways and in editorials these days. But which ones of are actually 'jolie laide'?

Jamie Bochert @ Viktor + Rolf Fall 2014

image credit: IMAXTREE.com

Forum member modelista, who started the discussion on the forums, nominated Jamie Bochert (pictured above), Edie Campbell and Lily McMenamy as potentially ‘jolie laide’ models. 

“I personally don't mind the look, if anything I like it. These models tend to be more unique and stand out from the majority. Just look at Jamie [Bochert], she has been modeling for more than 10 years!” shared Firefly216 

Teaars agreed that there seems to be a tendency for these models to enjoy unusual longevity in the fast-paced modeling business. He wrote, “I kind of find that these girls also last the longest, Daiane [Conterato] started out in 2006 as a Prada exclusive and look at her now, seven years into her career and Miuccia [Prada] still loves her. Same goes for Jamie and her decade long career, and still booking all the same shows (and new ones) like no other.”

Mr-Dale offered another viewpoint: “For me, jolie laide counts as having absolutely nothing conventionally attractive/beautiful to your features but still possessing a poetic quality to your presence and bone structure. Androgyny or having harsh/uncommon features like some of the girls posted above is something different IMO. Girls like Sasha [Pivovarova], Irina [Lăzăreanu], Hanne Gaby [Odiele], Daiane [Conterato] and many, many girls from around the zeroes, I perceive them as jolie laide.”

TheBlueRider also had her own definition. She posted, “Jolie Laide models have something very asymmetrical and jarring as opposed to models that have a unique feature that is otherwise symmetrical on a symmetrical face. Charlotte Gainsbourg is a good example. Jolie Laide girls aren't the kind of models that are good for beauty campaigns.”

An interesting topic with so many different opinions being shared. How would you define ‘jolie laide’? Comment below or join the discussion here

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