Catch Phrase | 盐系(yánxì)

Writer: Debra Li  | Editor: Stephanie Yang  | From:  | Updated: 2019-07-18


“盐” means “salt,” and “系” means “department.” As the flavor of “salt” is thought of as opposite to “sweet,” this term coined by Chinese netizens is used to describe a person’s countenance or dressing style. Used to describe either a man or woman, “in the cool department” means the person is dressed in a minimalist style and flat matte colors, or has such facial features as a chiseled jawline and high cheekbones. It’s also very likely that they keep a straight face and seldom smile, giving the impression of being offstandish.


A: 你们办公室来了几个新同事,怎么样?

Nǐmen bàngōngshì lái le jǐgè xīn tóngshì,zěnmeyàng?

You’ve got a few new colleagues in your office. How are they?

B: 什么怎么样?

Shénme zěnmeyàng?

What do you mean exactly?

A: 长得好看吗?

zhǎng de hǎokàn ma?

Are they good-looking?

B: 有个盐系小姐姐,特别美。

Yǒu ge yánxì xiǎojiějie,tèbié měi。

There is this young lady in the “cool” department. She’s a killer.