rub someone up the wrong way

rub (one) up the wrong way

To irritate one due to someone or something's presence, nature, or habitual behavior (as opposed to directly intentionally). Primarily heard in UK, Australia. The way she smiles all the time really rubs me up the wrong way. It seems so fake. He's always talking about how those adverts rub him up the wrong way, but I think they're just a bit of fun.
See also: rub, up, way, wrong
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

rub someone up the wrong way


rub someone the wrong way

If someone rubs you up the wrong way, they annoy you. She rubbed a lot of people up the wrong way while she was working here. That woman just rubs me the wrong way. Note: Cats do not like having their fur rubbed `the wrong way', that is in the opposite direction to the way it naturally grows.
See also: rub, someone, up, way, wrong
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
See also:
References in periodicals archive ?
Anne Robinson is bound to rub someone up the wrong way as the host, and as for the awards (the most unimportant aspect of the ceremony) if Peter Kay (pictured) doesn't win something for the brilliant Phoenix Nights, I'll be most disappointed.