What Does Breath of Fresh Air Mean?

Breath of Fresh Air Meaning

Definition: Something new and exciting.

When you go outside on a pleasant day, you may feel thrilled to breathe the air and enjoy the freshness of nature. Likewise, when something is a breath of fresh air, you receive the same excited feeling from being around it as you do when you step outside into a fresh breeze.

When something is a breath of fresh air, you enjoy it greatly. It is new, thrilling, and invigorating to you.

Origin of Breath of Fresh Air

This idiom comes from two idioms widely used before the 1800s. The two idioms from where is originates are breath of heaven and breath of spring, both of which mean the same thing.

breath of fresh air synonymThose two phrases have not been widely used since mid-1800s, when a breath of fresh air first came into use. Sometimes, breath of spring is still used today.

Examples of Breath of Fresh Air

There are two main uses of this phrase.

First, people often use this phrase to describe their joy when they are in a great mood. For example, someone might say,

  • The student teacher is a breath of fresh air. He has tons of new and good ideas we can try!

benjamin moore breath of fresh airSecond, people use this phrase to describe the need for something new when in a bad situation. Someone in a stifling conversation might say,

  • I need to leave to get a breath of fresh air.

In this example, the person is saying that the conversation is stale and unpleasant, and they need to find something new to do.

Someone might also say,

  • We need a breath of fresh air in this chorus.

This use shows that the chorus is missing something and would benefit from a person with a new and unique voice.

More Examples

  • The movie doesn’t shy away from its straightforwardness, telling it like it is: an exhilarating, inspiring breath of fresh air with its 80s’ score and underdog triumphs. –LA Times


Something that is a breath of fresh air is new, fresh, and invigorating.