Most Common French Slang Words

Most Common French Slang Words

Written by Pierre Noronha

Born and raised in Mumbai, Pierre Noronha thought that he was destined to be a Chartered Accountant, but all that changed when he discovered his love for writing. Taking this new found passion forward, he started working as a content writer for UniCreds.

February 21, 2021

French is among the top-10 most widely spoken languages in the world. Even outside of Europe, you can also hear the language spoken on nearly every continent. French is the official language in 29 countries, the procedural language for the European Union (EU), and also, the only language used for deliberations at the Court of Justice for the EU. According to a recent study, around 300 million people speak French. This includes native speakers, those who speak French as a second language, and numerous French dialects. French is spoken in many major higher education destinations like France, Canada, Switzerland and Belgium. Now that we have ascertained that French is an important language, especially for international students, we recommend you invest some time into learning this beautiful language. Though learning the basics of French can be a bit difficult and time-consuming, we thought it would be a good idea to teach you some common french slang words, just so you get a hang of the language. These slang words for French may not allow you to freely converse with a native French speaker but at least you will have some words in your repertoire to showcase your friends and peers. 

Most Common French Slang Words

So, let’s get to it. Here are some of the most common french slang words – 

General Everyday French Slang Words

These french slang words are understood throughout the French-speaking world. 

  • bouffer – to eat.
  • draguer – to flirt.
  • piquer – to steal.
  • une arnaque – a scam.
  • un truc – a thing.
  • déboussolé – disorientated.
  • un type, un mec – a guy.
  • une meuf – a woman.
  • un mail – an email.
  • gerber – to vomit.
  • c’est nul – that sucks
  • nickel! – perfect.
  • c’est top that’s great
  • flasher sur quelqu’un – to have a crush on someone
  • une piastre – a dollar.
  • les bas – socks.
  • bordel – a large mess.
  • balle – bullet.
  • baraque – a house.
  • BG – This is a popular acronym in french slang words. It stands for beau gosse, which means a handsome man. 
  • blé – money. 
  • bobo – an injury. 
  • une clope – cigarette. This is actually one of the most popular french slang words in Paris. 
  • kiffer – to like something.
  • ouf – awesome. 
  • être vénère – angry or annoyed. 

French Slang Words And Phrases 

These are french phrases where the individual words in the sentence are not slang, but they combine into a sentence that is used as a slang.

  • T’inquiète – a short version of Ne t’inquiète pas meaning ‘Don’t worry.
  • T’en fais pas or Ne t’en fais pas – Don’t make any or Don’t worry.
  • Un coup de téléphone – a phone call.
  • C’est n’importe quoi – It’s nonsense.
  • Il a ma peau He’s out to get me.
  • Perdre la tête – ‘to lose one’s head’, just like the same phrase in English.
  • Pas pire – Not bad.
  • Faire un téléphone – to make a phone call.
  • Ça va? Ça va! – ‘How are you?’ ‘Good!”
  • Arrête de te la péter – This is one of the most common french slang words used to tell someone to stop being a show-off or stop bragging.
  • Je me casse – I am out of here.
  • Il capte rien – He doesn’t understand anything.
  • Laisse tomber – Let it go.
  • J’ai la flemme – I am not in the mood to do a task.
  • J’ai un petit creux – I am a bit hungry.

Regional French Vocabulary

French slang is so extensive that there are different iterations of it in different parts of France. Here are some french slang words that are used only in certain smaller French-speaking regions – 

A Pencil

  • un crayon gris (in southern France)
  • un crayon de bois (in northern France)
  • un crayon (everywhere else)

A Pen

  • un Bic (Belgium and Kinshasa, DRC)
  • un crayon (commonly used in Quebec for “pen” although it also means “pencil”)

A Plastic Grocery Bag

  • une poche (in southwestern France)
  • un pochon (in small regions of central and western France)
  • un sachet (near the French-German border)
  • un cornet (in Switzerland)
  • un sac en plastique (understood throughout France)

A Chocolate Croissant

  • une chocolatine (in Quebec and in the Toulouse region of France)
  • un petit pain (in northern France)
  • un pain au chocolat (in the rest of France)

Shoes

  • les baskets (in France – refers only to trainers/running shoes)
  • souliers (in Quebec – refers only to everyday shoes. Considered an old-fashioned word in France)
  • les chaussures (understood throughout the French-speaking world)

A Restaurant Bill/Check

  • une addition (in France)
  • une facture (in Quebec)

Now that we are having fun with french slang words, let’s go over the most common French Text Slang

Slang used in French ‘textos’ is a lot like English slang. Most of the french slang words are  abbreviated common words and expressions. French slang in text messages tends to be universal, not regional.

  • slt (salut), bjr (bonjour) – hello
  • stp (s’il te plaît), svp (s’il vous plaît) – please.
  • cad (c’est-à-dire) – that is to say.
  • A+ (à plus tard) – see you later.
  • pq (pourquoi) – why.
  • wétu (où es-tu) – where are you.
  • je t’m (je t’aime) – I love you. 

We hope you enjoyed reading this blog on The Most Common French Slang Words. If you wish to read similar blogs, here are some link that you could check out –

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