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Uncomplimentary Compliments!



by Oluseye Igbafe


Most compliments are given with good intentions (I think). However, a compliment not properly phrased can actually sound more like a jab or worse still, an outright insult.

I was trying out a wig at a hair shop today when a young man with possibly good intentions turned and said, "This one is nice, it makes you look young".


In my mind, I was like, _hmm?! Am I not young? Egbami o!. So the phrase "makes you look young" would be a compliment for an old woman, which I am definitely NOT! It implies I look old! That wipes out whatever pleasure was to be gotten from that compliment. 

Now if he had said, "It makes you look younger", that would have been a compliment!

Let's look at another common supposed compliment. "This dress/hair/shoe makes you look nice!  This means it is the dress that makes you look nice. A better way to put it is: This dress looks nice on you!

Another common one is "You are looking good/smart/nice today! Or you smell nice today 😂😂 Why the need to add "today"?

So what other uncomplimentary compliments have you been given?

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