Loose and Lose: Commonly misused words
Loose and Lose: Commonly misused wordsJun 08
Do you use loose and lose correctly? Are you sure?
Misusing words can make your writing stand out as unprofessional, unpolished, and unedited. If you’re writing to publish, it’s something that can be easily fixed, so failing to do so makes you look as if you don’t know, or worse, don’t care. If you don’t think those types of mistakes matter, read a few Amazon reviews and then go back and edit your writing.
Lose and loose are commonly confused.
Lose (or its past tense, lost)
- Use lose when the idea is that you have misplaced something or failed to keep something.
- People are lost if they can’t find their way.
- Use lose if you mean someone has failed to win.
- Lose is also used as a polite way of saying someone has died.
- Loose can refer to the fit of your clothes, meaning the opposite of tight.
- Loose can also mean not contained, tied up, attached, buttoned, etc.
- Loose can also be used to describe someone who is sexually promiscuous, but this is an old-fashioned usage.
Examples using loose and lose
- If you don’t stay off Facebook, you will lose your job.
- I wish my neighbor wouldn’t let his dog run loose all the time.
- My company lost the contract bid this week.
- I hope I don’t lose any more cash today; I’ve already lost twenty dollars.
- I’ve lost ten pounds, and my jeans are a little too loose now.
- My grandfather thinks my girlfriend is loose because she has a tattoo.
- I’m sorry to hear you lost your mother.
- I think the Braves will lose this game.
- If you wear your coat loose like that, you’ll freeze.
- After exams, we decided to really let loose and enjoy ourselves.
Again, loose and lose are commonly confused, but they’re also not difficult to get right if you stop to think of the meaning your’e trying to convey. If you have any questions or suggestions for other misused words you’d like me to tackle, please leave a note in comments.