OK, but a girl is not a thing, but a person ... So "nice" should be accepted
may be I can help? joli = agréable à regarder ; beau = agréable à regarder mais en ajoutant l'idée que c'est un peu impressionnant comme la beauté d'Ava Gardner, d'une statue grecque, d'un paysage grandiose. Il y a des "canons" (des règles, des exigences) de la beauté, définis pour chaque époque, chaque culture. Ex: beauté classique (équilibre, symétrie, harmonie) ; beauté sauvage (force, violence, ardeur) etc...On peut préférer une jolie femme (supposée accessible) à une belle femme (supposée inaccessible) : question de goût!
Translation: «joli» = agreable to look at; «beau» = agreable to look at but adding in the idea that it's somewhat impressive like the beauty of Ava Gardner, of a Greek statue, of a grandiose landscape. There are some "canons" [canonical examples] (rules, standards) of «beauté» "beauty", defined for each era, each culture. E.g.: «beauté classique» "classical beauty" (balance, symmetry, harmony); «beauté sauvage» "savage beauty" (force, violence, passion) etc... One may prefer «une joile femme» "a pretty woman" (supposing approachable) over «une belle femme» "a beautiful woman" (supposing unapproachable): question of taste!
I do think in sentences like this, though, 'beautiful' should be accepted for 'joli' (or any variant thereof). The distinction between 'pretty' / 'lovely' and 'beautiful', especially when it comes to people, is more of a cultural thing than a linguistic thing.
It seems to me that 'pretty' or 'lovely' (again, particularly in reference to people) have more of a meaning overlap with 'beautiful' than they do with 'cute', but that's an accepted answer; it seems a little inconsistent.
No. Because of "B.A.N.G.S, the word "jolie" MUST come before the noun as "jolie" means "pretty", which signifies beauty (hence the "B" in "B.A.N.G.S" that means "beauty").
An example - "She is a pretty girl" is "C'est une jolie fille" and NOT "C'est une fille jolie".
B - Beauty
A - Age
N - Number
G - Goodness
S - Size
If any adjective falls into any of these categories, it goes before the noun.
The difference is not a matter of pronunciation, since both are pronounced SET.
It is a matter of grammar: "cet" is a demonstrative adjective that you can only find in front of a masculine word starting with a vowel sound.
cet homme = this man
cet arbre = this tree
c'est = it is or this is or that is.