Iggy looks in the mirror, in her reflection, we can see that she brushes her hair with a hairbrush. There are French words describing what we see in the reflection:

We've all been there, having trouble finding that perfect word or phrase to describe something basic — even our own looks! But, with this comprehensive guide, we’ll equip you with straightforward, effective ways to describe your visage (face) and tête (head) when speaking French.

Ready to delve deeper into the rich realm of French descriptive vocabulary? Without further ado, let's get started by breaking down some essential words for accurately depicting aspects of your physical appearance!

Why Learn French Names for Body Parts?

Learning French names for body parts comes with a multitude of benefits.

Firstly, it can be useful during trips to France, particularly in medical emergencies where swift and precise communication with healthcare professionals is crucial.

In addition, incorporating French sayings and idiomatic expressions that include references to body parts within your vocabulary can help you to better understand French culture and also make you sound more fluent and natural when speaking the language.

Beyond these practical applications, acquiring knowledge of French body part names brings an opportunity to expand your linguistic skills and can spark interesting dialogues with both native French speakers and fellow language enthusiasts.

The Basics

When describing your face and head in French, there are a few key terms that you should be familiar with. Let's start with the most basic ones and see how to use them in sample sentences:

French WordEnglish TranslationExampleTranslation
le visage face Mon visage est rond. My face is round.
la tête head Quand je suis stressé, j'ai mal à la tête. When I'm stressed, I have a headache.
les cheveux hair J'ai les cheveux courts et bouclés. I have short, curly hair.
le front forehead J'ai un front large et lisse. I have a wide, smooth forehead.
les sourcils eyebrows Mes sourcils sont épais et foncés. My eyebrows are thick and dark.
les yeux eyes J'ai les yeux bleus. I have blue eyes.
le nez nose J'ai un petit nez droit. I have a small, straight nose.
la bouche mouth Ma bouche est petite. My mouth is small.
le lèvres lips Mes lèvres sont pleines. My lips are full.
French WordEnglish TranslationExampleTranslation
le visage face Mon visage est rond. My face is round.
la tête head Quand je suis stressé, j'ai mal à la tête. When I'm stressed, I have a headache.
les cheveux hair J'ai les cheveux courts et bouclés. I have short, curly hair.
le front forehead J'ai un front large et lisse. I have a wide, smooth forehead.
les sourcils eyebrows Mes sourcils sont épais et foncés. My eyebrows are thick and dark.
les yeux eyes J'ai les yeux bleus. I have blue eyes.
le nez nose J'ai un petit nez droit. I have a small, straight nose.
la bouche mouth Ma bouche est petite. My mouth is small.
le lèvres lips Mes lèvres sont pleines. My lips are full.

Face Parts in French

Iggy looks in the mirror, in her reflection, we can see facial features named in French:

Now that we've covered the basics, let's expand our vocabulary to include more specific head and facial features. These terms may come in handy when you want to describe yourself or someone else in more detail:

French WordEnglish TranslationExampleTranslation
les joues cheeks Quand elle rit, ses joues deviennent roses. When she laughs, her cheeks turn pink.
le menton chin Il a un menton carré qui lui donne un air déterminé. He has a square chin, which gives him a determined look.
les oreilles ears Elle a de petites oreilles qui sont toujours couvertes par ses cheveux. She has small ears that are always covered by her hair.
la barbe beard Il porte une barbe bien taillée grise et noire. He sports a neatly trimmed black and gray beard.
la moustache mustache Sa moustache est mince et bien entretenue. His mustache is thin and well-groomed.
les cils eyelashes Ses cils longs et épais font ressortir ses yeux verts. Her long, thick eyelashes accentuate her green eyes.
les pommettes cheekbones Ses pommettes hautes lui donnent un air noble. Her high cheekbones give her a noble look.
les rides wrinkles Ses rides lui donnent un air sage et expérimenté. His wrinkles give him an air of wisdom and experience.
le cou neck Elle porte toujours un foulard pour couvrir son cou. She always wears a scarf to cover her neck.
le front dégarni receding hairline Il est complexé par son front dégarni. He is self-conscious about his receding hairline.
French WordEnglish TranslationExampleTranslation
les joues cheeks Quand elle rit, ses joues deviennent roses. When she laughs, her cheeks turn pink.
le menton chin Il a un menton carré qui lui donne un air déterminé. He has a square chin, which gives him a determined look.
les oreilles ears Elle a de petites oreilles qui sont toujours couvertes par ses cheveux. She has small ears that are always covered by her hair.
la barbe beard Il porte une barbe bien taillée grise et noire. He sports a neatly trimmed black and gray beard.
la moustache mustache Sa moustache est mince et bien entretenue. His mustache is thin and well-groomed.
les cils eyelashes Ses cils longs et épais font ressortir ses yeux verts. Her long, thick eyelashes accentuate her green eyes.
les pommettes cheekbones Ses pommettes hautes lui donnent un air noble. Her high cheekbones give her a noble look.
les rides wrinkles Ses rides lui donnent un air sage et expérimenté. His wrinkles give him an air of wisdom and experience.
le cou neck Elle porte toujours un foulard pour couvrir son cou. She always wears a scarf to cover her neck.
le front dégarni receding hairline Il est complexé par son front dégarni. He is self-conscious about his receding hairline.

Helpful Descriptive Words

Now that we have a good grasp of the basic terms, let's take it one step further by incorporating some adjectives to describe specific features of the face and head. Here are some examples:

Face Features

  • Les yeux (eyes):

French

English

grands

large

petits

small

en amande

almond-shaped

bridés

hooded

  • La bouche (mouth):

French

English

grande

big

petite

small

pulpeuse

full-lipped

fine

thin-lipped

  • Le nez (nose):

French

English

long

long

court

short

aquilin

aquiline, narrow

retroussé

turned up

  • Les joues (cheeks):

French

English

creuses

sunken

joufflues

chubby

saillantes

prominent

  • Le visage (face):

French

English

ovale

oval

carré

square

allongé

elongated

round

round

triangulaire

triangular

  • Les sourcils (eyebrows):

French

English

épais

thick

fins

thin

arqués

arched

droits

straight

Now, let's use these French adjectives to describe some different faces and heads:

French

English

Elle a de grands yeux en amande qui lui donnent un regard mystérieux.

She has large, almond-shaped eyes that give her a mysterious look.

Ses sourcils épais et arqués lui donnent un regard perçant.

Her thick, arched eyebrows give her a piercing gaze.

Son visage allongé est encadré par ses longs cheveux bruns.

Her elongated face is framed by her long brown hair.

Hair Color

 Iggy braids her red hair in front of the mirror.

Whether we're going for a dramatic change with a new haircut or simply experimenting with different products and coloring techniques, our hair can be a fun and expressive part of who we are.

Understanding hair colors in French can add more depth to your conversation. Here are some examples:

French

English

couleur de cheveux

hair color

blond

blonde

brune

brunette

rousse

redhead

châtain

chestnut brown

noire

black

grise

grey

For more color names in French, make sure to check our separate article on the subject.

Hairstyles

French hairdos can range from simple to sophisticated. Here are some French words for different hairstyles:

French

English

coiffure

hairstyle

les cheveux courts

short hair

les cheveux longs

long hair

les cheveux bouclés

curly hair

les cheveux raides

straight hair

une queue de cheval

ponytail

un chignon

bun

une tresse

braid

un carré

bob cut

une range

bangs

les mèches

highlights

Beauty & Make-up Related French Vocabulary

An illustration of makeup bag with the following beauty products in there, named in French:

Looking good often means different things to different people, but one thing is for sure — make-up and beauty products help us all feel a bit more confident in our own skin. If you're interested in French beauty products or just want to add some basic French vocabulary to your beauty routine, we've got you covered.

French WordEnglish TranslationExampleTranslation
maquillage makeup Elle a mis du maquillage pour la fête. She put on makeup for the party.
beauté beauty La beauté est dans l'œil de celui qui regarded. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
rouge à lèvres lipstick J'ai oublié mon rouge à lèvres à la maison. I left my lipstick at home.
ombre à paupières eyeshadow Elle a choisi une ombre à paupières bleue pour correspondre à sa robe. She chose blue eyeshadow to match her dress.
fond de teint foundation Le fond de teint aide à unifier le teint. Foundation helps to even out the skin tone.
mascara mascara Son mascara est à l'épreuve de l'eau. Her mascara is waterproof.
pinceau brush Elle utilise un grand pinceau pour appliquer la poudre. She uses a large brush to apply the powder.
vernis à ongles nail polish Son vernis à ongles rouge est très attrayant. Her red nail polish is very attractive.
fard à joues blush Elle a appliqué trop de fard à joues. She applied too much blush.
eyeliner eyeliner Il est difficile de tracer une ligne droite avec un eyeliner. It's hard to draw a straight line with eyeliner.
French WordEnglish TranslationExampleTranslation
maquillage makeup Elle a mis du maquillage pour la fête. She put on makeup for the party.
beauté beauty La beauté est dans l'œil de celui qui regarded. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
rouge à lèvres lipstick J'ai oublié mon rouge à lèvres à la maison. I left my lipstick at home.
ombre à paupières eyeshadow Elle a choisi une ombre à paupières bleue pour correspondre à sa robe. She chose blue eyeshadow to match her dress.
fond de teint foundation Le fond de teint aide à unifier le teint. Foundation helps to even out the skin tone.
mascara mascara Son mascara est à l'épreuve de l'eau. Her mascara is waterproof.
pinceau brush Elle utilise un grand pinceau pour appliquer la poudre. She uses a large brush to apply the powder.
vernis à ongles nail polish Son vernis à ongles rouge est très attrayant. Her red nail polish is very attractive.
fard à joues blush Elle a appliqué trop de fard à joues. She applied too much blush.
eyeliner eyeliner Il est difficile de tracer une ligne droite avec un eyeliner. It's hard to draw a straight line with eyeliner.

Other Head-Related Vocabulary

If you're learning French, you may also be looking for French equivalents to commonly used English phrases featuring the word “head” — such as “head office” or "head start."

Here's a handy table of English phrases involving the word "head," their French equivalents, and examples of how to use them in a sentence:

English PhraseFrench EquivalentExampleTranslation
head office siège social Le siège social de notre entreprise est à Paris. Our company's head office is in Paris.
head chef chef de cuisine Le chef de cuisine prépare des plats délicieux. The head chef prepares delicious dishes.
head teacher directeur, directrice d'école La directrice de l'école a organisé une réunion. The head teacher organized a meeting.
head start avantage initial Grâce à son expérience, il a un avantage initial dans la course. Thanks to his experience, he has a head start in the race.
head count compte des têtes, effectif Le compte des têtes a montré qu'il manquait deux personnel. The head count showed two people were missing.
head-on (adj) de front Il y a eu une collision de front. There was a head-on collision.
head-on (adv) directement Il a abordé le problème directement. He addressed the problem head-on.
head-turner qui fait tourner les têtes Cette nouvelle voiture est vraiment un qui fait tourner les têtes. This new car really is a head-turner.
to fall head over heels tomber éperdument amoureux Il est tombé éperdument amoureux d'elle au premier regard. He fell head over heels for her at first sight.
off the top of my head de tête Je ne peux pas me souvenir de son numéro de téléphone de tête. I can't remember his phone number off the top of my head.
heads-up avis, avertissement Il m'a donné un avertissement avant la réunion. He gave me a heads-up before the meeting.
English PhraseFrench EquivalentExampleTranslation
head office siège social Le siège social de notre entreprise est à Paris. Our company's head office is in Paris.
head chef chef de cuisine Le chef de cuisine prépare des plats délicieux. The head chef prepares delicious dishes.
head teacher directeur, directrice d'école La directrice de l'école a organisé une réunion. The head teacher organized a meeting.
head start avantage initial Grâce à son expérience, il a un avantage initial dans la course. Thanks to his experience, he has a head start in the race.
head count compte des têtes, effectif Le compte des têtes a montré qu'il manquait deux personnel. The head count showed two people were missing.
head-on (adj) de front Il y a eu une collision de front. There was a head-on collision.
head-on (adv) directement Il a abordé le problème directement. He addressed the problem head-on.
head-turner qui fait tourner les têtes Cette nouvelle voiture est vraiment un qui fait tourner les têtes. This new car really is a head-turner.
to fall head over heels tomber éperdument amoureux Il est tombé éperdument amoureux d'elle au premier regard. He fell head over heels for her at first sight.
off the top of my head de tête Je ne peux pas me souvenir de son numéro de téléphone de tête. I can't remember his phone number off the top of my head.
heads-up avis, avertissement Il m'a donné un avertissement avant la réunion. He gave me a heads-up before the meeting.

By familiarizing yourself with these terms, you'll be better equipped to handle a variety of situations and conversations in French. Keep practicing and enriching your vocabulary. Bonne chance!

The Bottom Line

Iggy is at the head office at the reception desk, he answers the phone, saying, “Bonjour, vous êtes au siège, comment puis-je vous aider?”

Learning French words for body parts, such as face or head, is an essential part of the language. And, while mastering all these terms can seem tricky and first, memorizing and applying them in context will have you using these expressions like a pro in no time!

Finally, if you’re looking for ways to learn and practice French with hands-on tips and memorization tools, try our Langster app to learn French with stories!