Why do French Girls Look Cool with Bangs and We Look Like Matilda?

Look at that photo of Caroline de Maigret. She has made bangs look cool as fuck.

Now look at that photo of Matilda. This is what we’d all look like with bangs.

Now look back at Caroline.

Now back to Matilda.

Now back to Caroline.

Now look at yourself. You’re probably awesome, and since you read Man Repeller you’re probably also hilarious. And stylish, and savvy. Ya di ya di, ya. But unless you’re French — and maybe you are — the cold hard truth is no matter what, bangs make everyone look like a telekinetic bookworm.

We could ask why, but we know why: because French people seem to make everything a little bit cooler. They are like walking ice cubes in leather pants.

With great hair.

Disclaimer: If you already have bangs…we bet they look great!!! (Seriously. Send us photos of your awesome bangs so we can copy you.)

  • mia

    I thought i would look cool like alexa chung with 60s inspired bangs,but i was so wrong,I look like i have a helmet…

  • sofiaben

    I loved my bangs!! however they sure didn’t look like Caroline!!

  • mefrocher

    I would say it’s not about being french it’s about having a small nose: only people with small nose can have bangs!

    A french reader

    • Lacey Noel Roszak

      Not necessarily. I have a larger nose and I look great with bangs.

    • Maria

      I’m inclined to agree. But Caroline actualy has large-ish nose

    • Liv

      I think it’s more like a narrow nose. I have a wide nose and it doesn’t suit me well. Some people have big, yet narrow noses and they look cool with the fringe.

  • juliuslove

    It’s because they’re not fussed with/blow-dried perfectly/combed well

  • Bangs may be my worst enemy…scarred for life since 10 years old. Maybe we’re just not cool enough for the bangs.

    Your Friend, Jess

  • Barcelonette

    Hi everyone!! This is funny… I looked super different to this French girl with bangs too.

    I don’t know what is it that makes them look so so nice all the time and that’s why today we’ve published this article in our magazine – Barcelonette – with 8 tricks to copy the French style.

    You can read it here:

  • Patrícia Valério

    I do agree. Sometimes I use bangs ( iam not in bangs right now) but i find myself thinking in the same way! Respect!

  • Sílvia Silva

    Well, I have bangs for many years. I love them most of the time, but there are days I wish I had none:D I am not French, I am Portuguese, but even then I like my bangs! You can copy me now:D

  • Alex2552xelA

    It’s all about bringing in pics of bangs from the 60s and 70s (Marianne Faithfull, Julie Christie, Jane Birkin) and insisting that they be long and thick, so you can wear them messy. I always ask for brunette Bardot. Which reminds me, I need to book an appt. to get them chopped off again– so bored with my hair!

  • PivotTable

    I imagine you need great cheek bones, wispy hair, and a breezy and/or IDGAF attitude to pull off bangs in any way that isn’t Matilda.

  • Christie Thompson

    bangs are awesome and bookworms are sexy!

  • Elli

    i’m french and I have bangs :-)))

  • ollie

    I just chopped mine off! blonde matilda? lol

  • Luísa Saldanha

    Here’s some brazilian bangs for you (and a little bit of concealer)

    • Larissa Gargaro


  • Larissa Gargaro

    Here are some brazilian bangs. Or whatever.
    ~dOn’T hAtE mE cUz U aIn’T mE~~~~~~~~~

    • Larissa (the same)

      Ok here it is.

    • Amelia Diamond

      ok THIS: ~dOn’T hAtE mE cUz U aIn’T mE~~~~~~~~~

      my favorite sparkly myspace-ism used to be: ~*~*~*S0 F@buLoUs I Pi$$ GliTtEr*~*~*~

  • ha ha ha! “walking ice cubes in leather pants”, that doesn’t leave much to imagination, does it? u burped it all out 😉


  • Nicole

    strawberry blonde bangs FTW

  • Charlotte

    The thing I find most confounding, how do they get their bangs to stay like that ALL THE TIME? When I had bangs (a short lived time in high school) they were incredibly difficult to maintain without the help of a professional and when i let them go rogue they DID NOT look like Caroline’s.

  • Adriana Herrera

    I have my bangs for the last 4 years. I just love them!! I am from Colombia and even knowing that I am not French, I do love how they look on me. They just combine perfectly whit my style.


  • Pipa

    Portuguese bangs

  • Ella

    been rockin a matil-do nearly all my life

  • Carla

    try dry shampoo instaed of washing them every day

  • ashleymaciejewski

    I have saved this image of CdM at least 20 times on my computer because it’s so perfectly “French.” I’m also in the middle of suffering from my second case of “growing out bangs” due to a failed reproduction. Bullshit.

  • Carol

    i know i totally look like mathilda!

  • nahevy

    mex / french style lol

  • natalia

    not nearly as cool as the french (i’m american, hi!)

  • natalia

    bangs 4 lyfe

  • candice

    here is a fringe (we don’t call it ‘bangs’) from new zealand xxx

    • Josephine


    • Lacey Noel Roszak

      She’s got that french ass thing down pat! Go New Zealand!!!

      • Zeenat Wilkinson

        Go New Zealand….xxx

  • Hayley

    God, why the hell did I spend the last ten years trying to look like an american girl? #frenshgirlaresocool #frenshgriltalking

  • cynthia hakopian

    mine are in between bangs. so i sidebrush. … p.s. i wish i was a walking ice cube in leather pants.

  • ni ni

    But Caroline’s bangs are poking her eyes. How can she seeee! And look at Matilda, happy baby with clear vision.

  • Amelia Diamond

    GUYS! You are BLOWING our minds with these gorgeous bangs. YOU PROVED ME WRONG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! TEACH US YOUR SECRETS!!!!



  • stellabystarlite

    This Caroline looks like a homeless person. She wishes she could rock bangs like Matilda.

  • Tamara

    As a girl with (insane, mind-of-their-own, irrepressible) curls, bangs are NOT an option unless I wish to channel Jennifer grey circa ferris bueller…

  • Josephine

    Fringes aren’t just for French girls, fringes are for life.

    • notfrenchbutbetter


  • A French girl

    Don’t worry, French girls also struggle with bangs 😉

  • Lacey Noel Roszak

    I HAVE THE SECRET! To make your bangs not lay flat on your head and look dumb, blow dry them with a medium sized roundbrush. Start by pulling them straight up with the roundbrush, and slowly roll the brush downward over your forehead blowdrying them the whole time. This gives them some volume and style. I’m a hair stylist, and i have bangs, and they look cool and i get tons of compliments on them =)

  • Renee Klaassen

    Hehehe biggest laugh of my day, I reckon I rock bangs and I’m 45 … I’m Belgian does that count? Biggish nose too, Renee

  • Kristen

    The French bangs are cut much longer, and they are cut with a curve on the sides to blend more into the rest of her hair.

    The Matilda bangs are much shorter, and blunter on the sides, creating a right angle from the edge of the bangs into the rest of the hair.

    I think that’s why. I cut my own blunt bangs, always have; when I do, I make a U-shape on top to get a thicker fringe, and I twist them ONLY twice before cutting them. Those two twist-turns result in the curve shape on the sides. And when I cut, I cut upwards into the hair, not straight across. That breaks it up more and avoids the little girl look.

    Also, I am 1/4 French.

    • Ksenia

      Hi, in Russia we call it ‘cholka’ 🙂 I used to have one for ages since childhood, then struggled to grow out, and when finally managed, realized, how much I love bands and this ‘prettiness’ that they give. So I have it again ) Here is some oriental hairstyle, but with a bang )))

  • Anna

    The top-secret to the French-girl bangs is…. grow them out! I sure look like Matilda after a fresh cut, but after two weeks or so I’m totally channeling Parisian chic and I’m not even Parisian.

    • Isabella Ferraro

      Awesome bangs, you look fab! And awesome tip, thanks a lot 🙂

      • Anna

        Thank you so much! 🙂

  • Melissa

    I must admit, I am a true francophile, so I do love that french bang iconic look, but I’ve been rocking bangs for years now and I’m not french, but half Chinese, and the other half being a mix of German/Brazilian, and I think I look pretty damn cool and adorbs! Love em! 😉 <3 you can copy me now, thanks lol!

  • I debate wanting bangs every time I see a photo of Caroline or Jane Birkin etc… but agree they would just look like Matilda or worse! haha I Loved this article. So true!

  • Julie Meowmeows

    Hm. Yup, telekinetic bookworm. I cut them too short yesterday!

  • Rodica

    When I got bangs in October, I passed the (note: completely unknown to me) hairdresser the picture of my hair goals and eagerly awaited the results. Two seconds later, he exclaimed: “Done. It looks EXACTLY like the picture!”

    It did not. It looked like the type of haircut you gave yourself behind the couch when you were five and discovered a pair of scissors laying on the coffee table, and then your mom comes in the room and finds you and your hair behind the couch.

    In both cases mom had to fix the bad cut.

  • laura

    I think mine look ok 😀

  • Ana Paola

    I think it’s so cool use bangs, that you can create a cool style, can be depends for the form of the face that a kind of person looks akward and the french fashionistas like Caroline try to definitely always their parisian look tgat is amazing! ?✌.

  • Lennie

    I am French and dude, I look like shit with bangs!

    • Lor En

      Yes me too !!!

  • Rit Moniz

    My bangs then & now.
    <3 from Portugal

  • Stella Marie

    Since i got my bangs two years ago it happened more than once that men randomly started talking french to me on the street, although these guys were germans like me.

    Now I got a boyfriend from Paris.

  • Ashley Michelle Christian

    I ❤️ My bangs

  • America

    I’m Latina and I fell awesome with my bangs! Besos!

  • Sophie

    I’m only half French and have curly bangs.. Does it still count? ?

    • robynsanasa

      Your hair is beautiful!

  • Anna

    Love bangs ! So chic
    Me;) –

  • Sara Johansen

    My ‘french girl bangs’ are all thanks to my hairstylist and also to our muse Jeanne Damas.

  • Patrizia

    From Vienna with love! I’am 34 but my bangs make me look a little younger 😉

  • Daniella Deutsch

    South African bangs! No where near French cool but I think Mathilda is pretty fabulous too!

  • SnapsandBits

    I find it reprehensible that you are shaming a little girl, one who is adorable with adorable bangs and is the hero of many little girls. Girls face enough issues with body image as it is these days. Shame on you.

  • Megan Knievel

    I think we look rad, but throwing the bird generally adds a certain air of badass

  • Vic

    Matilda is fucking awesome and I’d rather look like her. Also one is of a child… seriously. And one a grown ass women. I’m sure tht women looked silly when she was 7.

  • Freya

    i’m llike mathilda and lydia deetz

  • dlazell78

    J’adore le bang.

  • Emma Ramsay

    I love them as it hides the vein that pops out on my forehead when I am angry and conceals uneven drawn on eyebrows when I get ready hungover/tired/in the dark.

    I hate them because getting them trimmed gives me heart palpitations and unsightly sweat stains. Too stressful.

  • Chrischa Venus Oswald

    German (well, Bavarian) bangs, back then and now (;
    Have them back since my 30th bday and don´t regret them!

  • Αλεχανδρα Λιν

    xxx from Greece
    P.S sometimes I hate my bangs

  • Zeenat Wilkinson

    Yep. Team Matilda.