French Stereotypes We Won't Even Try to Deny

The French really do love bread
The French really do love bread | © Ablimit Ablet/Unsplash
Alex Ledsom

While we all resist being confined to stereotypes, every nation boasts its own distinctive quirks, and the French are no exception. Amid the array of cultural nuances, some are pure myth while others ring with truth. Delving into the realm of French idiosyncrasies, we uncover habits that many French people do indeed embrace. So, let’s peel back the layers and explore these charming quirks that contribute to the rich tapestry of French identity.

Contrary to the occasional misconception, the allure of French habits goes beyond clichés, encapsulating a spectrum of customs that weave into the nation’s fabric. From culinary rituals that celebrate gastronomic excellence to social nuances that exude elegance, the French way of life is a fusion of tradition and modernity. Embrace the charm of these genuine habits that reflect the soul of France, dispelling the myths and embracing the truths that make the French, well, uniquely French. Did you know – Culture Trip now does bookable, small-group trips? Pick from authentic, immersive Epic Trips, compact and action-packed Mini Trips and sparkling, expansive Sailing Trips.

The French do eat croissants for breakfast

It is such a stereotype but the French only do sweet things at breakfast. That means that while lots of people eat toast with jam, many more eat croissants and pain au chocolat. It’s very hard to find anything else to have with your coffee in the mornings. We won’t complain – they are delicious.

They’re obsessed with bread

It’s true that the French are obsessed with bread. The stereotypical image of a Frenchman riding about on his bicycle with a baguette under his arm is very outdated and French bread is now super chic (as you can find it most places nowadays) but the French are still obsessed with it. There are at least ten different types of baguette in any French boulangerie (bakery). There is even specific etiquette for eating bread when at French dinner parties.

The very important French baguette

The French consume a lot of French culture

The French have a fantastic film industry, and one of the reasons is that it has the support of the people. France has the highest cinema attendance in Europe and as many as 60% of films consumed are French. It’s quite common to meet people who have no knowledge of any of the current Hollywood blockbusters but have recently visited their local cinema to watch the latest French offerings.

Everyone knows quite a bit about wine

France is famous for being one of the world’s top wine producers, and everyone in France seems to have their favourite type. Just under 60% of all alcohol consumed by the French is wine and most people know quite a bit about it – more than you might find in other countries around the world. Not surprising, as France has some amazing wine regions. It’s very close to their hearts.

The tasting room at Chateau Suduiraut

And everyone loves some sort of cheese

The French are renowned for their cheeses, like brie and camembert. Companies like Boursin have been using the French ideal of cheese with bread and wine for years as a key way to advertise their products – and it works because it’s true, the French eat a lot of cheese. According to The Local, 96% of French people eat cheese, nearly 50% do so every day, and on average they consume a massive half a kilo (17.6 ounces) of cheese every week. That makes them the biggest cheese-lovers in the world.

The French love of cheese is well known

They are an independent bunch

The French have a reputation for flouting the rules and being keenly independent; maybe something to do with a little thing called The French Revolution. They also raise their children a little differently. Children are encouraged to think for themselves from a young age and, as a result, are far more independent as adults.

With a very keen sense of style

With their independent spirit and mostly immaculate sense of style, everyone knows that the French are some of the coolest people on the planet. Look through any fashion blog and you’ll see posts on ‘How to dress like the French’, ‘How to have French hair’, etc. They look individual, different, and have an effortless sense of style. It would explain why everyone is obsessed with it.

The French are renowned for their fashion sense
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