ski-jump nose: Idiom Meaning and Origin

What does ‘ski-jump nose’ mean?

The idiom "ski-jump nose" refers to a nose that is long, narrow, and curves upwards at the tip, resembling the shape of a ski jump. It is often used to describe someone's physical appearance.

Idiom Explorer


The idiom "ski-jump nose" refers to a facial feature that resembles the shape of a ski jumping ramp – a long, steep, and prominent nose. This idiom is primarily used to describe noses that are large, protruding, and have a prominent bridge.

While the origin of the idiom is unclear, it likely stemmed from the observation and comparison between a ski jump and the shape of a particular type of nose. The association between a nose and a ski jump may have been made due to their similar characteristics – an elongated shape and a prominent, rising arc.

The idiom "ski-jump nose" is predominantly used to describe physical appearances, specifically facial features. It is often used playfully or jokingly, but can also be used derisively or mockingly, particularly when referring to a person with a large or prominent nose. Additionally, the idiom may carry associations with skiing, winter sports, and the image of a ski jump, evoking feelings of elegance, athleticism, or even ridicule depending on the context and tone used.

I watched him ski and jump off his nose.

It is worth noting that the idiom "ski-jump nose" is not limited to any particular region or culture, as it can be found in use across English-speaking countries and communities. Although not as widespread as other idioms, it is relatively common in informal conversations, literature, and popular media.

The idiom has also found its way into various forms of expression and artistic representations, including literature, film, and visual arts. In such contexts, it may be used to enhance descriptions, evoke imagery, or add humor to narratives featuring characters with distinctive facial features.

Despite its widespread use, the idiom "ski-jump nose" remains subjective and can vary in meaning and interpretation depending on the context and individuals involved. While its primary association with a particular nose shape is relatively clear, beauty standards and personal preferences mean that the perception and reception of this idiom can differ significantly from person to person.

The related idioms "banana nose" and "nigger nose" are variations of the term "ski-jump nose" that make similar associations. "Banana nose" refers to a nose that has a curved shape resembling a banana, while "nigger nose" is a derogatory term used to describe a nose that is large and prominent. It is crucial to note that the usage of the term "nigger nose" is offensive and highly inappropriate due to its racist nature. However, it is essential to acknowledge and understand the existence of such variations to provide a comprehensive overview of the subject.

As language evolves, so too does the usage and understanding of idioms. The idiom "ski-jump nose" serves as a reminder of the powerful and creative ways in which language can describe and interpret the world around us. Although its origin may remain a mystery, its continued use and adaptation in everyday language reflect the enduring fascination and versatility of idiomatic expressions.

Example usage

Examples of how the idiom "ski-jump nose" can be used in a sentence:

  • Her ski-jump nose was her most distinctive feature.
  • He underwent cosmetic surgery to reshape his ski-jump nose.
  • The protagonist's self-consciousness about her ski-jump nose drove the plot of the story.

More "Physiognomy" idioms

We missed the mark - nothing found.