How do you kiss French properly

5 tips for kissing properly in France (la bise)

Jean Dujardin, The Artist

Kiss back, kiss back, the French seem to kiss all the time! This Kissing ritual Many foreigners and especially the Germans find it confusing, sometimes embarrassing or even totally disgusting 😀
Come on, you can get through this! I give you today a few Tippsso you can get a better understanding of all that kissing stuff. Because I don’t want you to go to France just because of the «Bise» seem like an idiot.

Kiss on the cheeks or "Faire la bise" is an art. While the French have been doing it spontaneously since early childhood, you have to ask yourself When? Whom? How? How much? And still which cheek first?

NUMBER 1. When to kiss

There is no shortage of opportunities to kiss on the cheek. For every known person you meet at least once a day is the rule. Some common examples:

  • At home when getting up and saying goodnight
  • When you visit or meet friends and again when you say goodbye
  • At school in the morning
  • Sometimes at work but not necessarily (rather after a long absence, at a party or at a walkout)
  • When something is given
  • On New Year's Eve at 0:00
  • To congratulate someone (birthday, high school graduation, child, wedding ...)
  • Young children should often kiss while asking someone for forgiveness after they have misbehaved

Even if it is impractical, for example when you are picked up by car, when you meet in a narrow restaurant, on a ski slope or what I know: get up anyway or get out and kiss!

The whole is not exactly time-savingAs for the food, the French take enough time for it. The The amount of kisses is proportional to the number of people present. You can imagine to what extent the cheeks of the bride and groom are consumed on the wedding day 🙂

NO. 2. Kiss who

Touchy topic…
The general rule: Children are allowed to kiss everyone they know. Women kiss women and men. Men only kiss among relatives and close friends, especially when they are young.
Then the ratio comes into question. Not an issue with family and friends. What if you don't know people well? A few more examples to clarify:

  • At a private party, in a group, with friends, where you only know a fraction of the people: greet or kiss everyone in the same way (Men shake hands)
  • You leave them at work Superiors take the initiative, never offer a kiss! Colleagues tend not to shake hands because it feels too cold and unfriendly, either kiss them or simply say “bonjour”. Men sometimes shake hands or just say "bonjour".
  • Older people can decide whether they want to kiss or not.

NO.3. How to kiss

When kissing, the imaginary The boundaries of the physical intimate sphere have been broken. And that's the crux of the matter! The intensity and passion varies depending on who is kissed, because it plays Gut feeling an important role 😉
Generally in France there is one Distance zone from 40 to 50 cm okay (in Germany, on the other hand, physical proximity under 60-80 cm can be shocking).
If you have the Person doesn't know that well, then prefer to be cautious stay and kiss very well and quickly without the help of the poor.
Further body contact, such as holding your arm, is reserved for the inner circle. Some particularly tactile people may grab their heads or necks, that goes with the family, with good friends or with children. Nevertheless, one should be careful that it is not too much for the kissed person!

NO.4. Which cheek first?

If you don't start on the same page as your kissing partner, there is Risk of smooching! In that case, I'm not a role model because I'm always wrong 🙁 To help, I can say that the offer most French people the right cheek first.

NO.5. How many kisses

Very important! You come with the discipline "Faire la bise" not clear as long as you don't know how many kisses are expected. Whoever tries to give another kiss while the second steps back, gets a basket, again embarrassing 🙁
Whether 1, 2, 3, 4 or even 5 kisses, it stops at the region in France. The subject is so confusing (even for the French) that one Website would be specially created for this. An online survey resulted in a so-called «Carte des bises», so Kisses card.

Now you know everything!
Finally, check out this funny video from British comedian Paul Taylor, who lives in Paris and humorously explains his science about “la bise”.

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