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German: It Suits You! Posted by on Feb 13, 2019 in Language

Guten Tag! How do you tell someone in German that something ‘suits them’? Read on to find out!

So you’re out shopping with a German friend and they want your opinion on the t-shirt they’ve just tried on. It looks really good. What do you tell them? You could say “Es sieht gut aus!” (“It looks good!”) but this doesn’t necessarily convey that the t-shirt looks good on them, just that the t-shirt itself looks good. Instead, to up the compliment to another level, try this little phrase:

Es steht dir.

The word steht comes from the verb stehen, meaning to stand. So this phrase means … It stands you? Huh?

If you’re already familiar with the verb stehen then it’s probably in this sort of context:

Ich stehe hier und warte.
I’ll stand here and wait.

So it might seem confusing at first, but the phrase Es steht dir has nothing to do with standing and actually means “It suits you”! You can add emphasis by adding “gut” (“good”) onto the end:

Es steht dir gut!
It suits you really well!

You can, of course, also use it for telling someone that a certain colour suits them:

Blau steht dir gut.
Blue really suits you.

On the other hand, to say something doesn’t suit a person, say:

Es steht dir nicht.
It doesn’t suit you.

The most obvious context to use this in would be when talking about clothes and accessories, but there is another way you can use it, and that is to tell someone that a mood, emotion or state of mind suits them:

Glücklich steht dir gut.
Happiness really suits you (or: ‘happiness looks good on you’).

So if you see, for instance, that your friend is happy for the first time in a long time, and you want to let them know how much joy it gives you to see them so happy, “Glücklich steht dir gut” is a wonderful phrase to use to convey this thought!

Now you know how to say “it suits you” in German! Next time we will talk about a similar phrase that expresses that something “fits”, so look out for that.

I hope this has been helpful! Bis bald (see you soon).

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About the Author: Constanze

Servus! I'm Constanze and I live in the UK. I'm half English and half German, and love writing about German language and culture. I also work as a group fitness instructor.