I have seen and heard the word many many times but every time I ask "Was bedeutet Schickimicki?" they don't give a conclusive answer.

I just saw it on the journal Zeit and just thought I didn't know exactly what it is.

This is the phrase:

Doch wohl nur von den Journalisten und der Schickimicki.

What I get is:

Exactly only from the Journalists and the Rich-classy-arrogant-people.

  • 1
    Well, you already answered your question. Here some links: Duden - Wiktionary
    – Em1
    Commented Apr 25, 2013 at 14:41
  • So if someone is Schickimicki, is that considered a level above Biedermeier? Or are the from fundamentally different Schichten in the sociological sense?
    – rabidotter
    Commented Apr 28, 2013 at 15:22
  • @rabidotter Biedermeier was a period in history (early 19th century), not a sociological grouping. Commented Apr 29, 2013 at 18:59
  • 2
    A friend of mine is now part of my Schickimicki friendbase after the following dialog: "Can I borrow 10 bucks from you?" "No." "20 bucks?" "Forget it." "50 bucks?" "Sure, here you go!", and passes a 50 to me. That´s because Schickimicki people just don´t take the hassle of keeping small cash in their pockets. Commented Jul 18, 2013 at 0:11

7 Answers 7


Well, the translation hits the spot.

"Schickimicki" is a strongly depreciatory or derogative term for "snobbish-arrogant-rich" people that (at least appear to) use lots of money on their appearance.

This, in general, also implies that they would be more suited for a prom-night than for walking out in the streets.


My favorite translation is »fancy-schmanzy« → people having an air of being divorced from reality, snobbish characters, celebrating themselves and making a name for themselves through boasting about their money and stressing that money isn't an issue for them.

Be aware that »Schickimicki« is rarely used anymore. It was popular and widely used in the eighties and the early nineties. It was also used in the media [with the obligatory tounge-in-cheek smile when it comes to these tpoics].

I can't really name a term used as broadly as back then.

  • »schick« [German] means «trendy, fashionable, posh«
  • »chic« [French] sound like the German «schick« and both mean quite the same; and then we have the same term in English, so I wouldn't be surprise to find a common root in Latin :)

This wikipedia article relates to »Schickimicki« to Schickeria, which I would translate as »Party People« in the meaning of, well, as above. The article also explains

  • sciccheria – italian word for »fashionable, fancy, posh«
  • schickern – jiddish for »getting drunk«

And then there is the Austrian German term

  • »Adabei« → a contracted form of »a dabei« in [dialect!], which would be »auch dabei« in standard German [BUT never used in that way!] which is »also there« in English, and describes people who seem to always be around the wealthy and rich, there trying to be in as many pictures with them as possible, although not always welcome.

I found »Adabei« most often used in Vienna, especially used as the Austrian version of Schickimicki but could possibly being dated back into the 1950ies, I guess.


Schickimicki as a very derogatory term referring to people who have money enough to buy expensive products and regard themselves as being right in there with regard to fashion, style, taste, etc without realising that in fact they are simply flashy and vulgar and impress no one except other Schickimickis. They are to be found in the sort of Eurotrash, particularly German, French and Italian, that frequents 'fashionable' coastal and skiing resorts where they can show off their flashy clothes, cars and yachts and total lack of taste and discernment.


The British English equivalent would be poser – someone who likes to be seen, or as the Kinks once sang a dedicated follower of fashion but meant in a derogatory way. It also applies to C-list celebrities – people who believe themselves to be famous for being famous (or somehow associating with the famous), with no obvious talent themselves, but who behave arrogantly and condescendingly towards others. The sort of people who might feature in magazines such as Hello and OK.

Despite the comment above about it being outdated and rarely used, it is still frequently used in my part of Austria especially to describe certain types from Munich and Vienna who believe themselves to be far superior to the “local peasants”.

  • I have never heard of this meaning of "poser" in English, I've only encountered it to mean somebody who tries very hard to be a member of a subculture, but is not really one. See for example the Manowar line "Heavy metal or no metal at all wimps and posers leave the hall" - here, "posers" are the ones who wear black and call themselves metalheads but listen to, say, hard rock or glam metal. Even if there is a separate BE meaning, it can be misunderstood because of the homonym.
    – rumtscho
    Commented Oct 18, 2014 at 17:39
  • @rumtscho, your comment got me interested, so I look up “poser” and found it as a term for a show-off.
    – Carsten S
    Commented Feb 14, 2016 at 10:18

A good English equivalent would be "hoity toity."

  • 1
    Welcome to German Language SE. Please consider expanding your answer with further explanation, such that it is more useful to further visitors.
    – Wrzlprmft
    Commented Feb 9, 2016 at 23:14

The origin is in the group of people, friends of Mick Flick (Mercedes; owner of art gallery) considered people chic.

schick - chic mick is the nickname

  • 2
    Hast Du dafür Quellen? Kannst Du zeitlich und räumlich noch eingrenzen, also wann und wo das entstand? Commented Feb 4, 2020 at 19:44

I don't speak German but I instantly saw it as "mucky-muck".

mucky-muc: A pompous person of importance (often of imagined and real power) (Urban Dictionary)

Another spelling is:

muckety muck (plural muckety mucks) (US, colloquial): A high muckamuck; a person (especially self-important) in a position of power, authority, or status ()


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.