Apr 14, 2011

Lose Credibility With Loose Grammar

(Photo by ilce)
Improper use of the words loose and lose can quickly shoot down a writer’s credibility, but it’s not an uncommon occurrence in any printed form.

Lose rhymes with news and is the opposite of win.
Loose rhymes with noose and is the opposite of tight.

If you lose weight. your clothes might be loose.
If your dog gets loose, you might lose him.

You can lose your marbles, your mind and your memory.
You can have loose morals, loose change and a loose screw.

I don’t know of any trick to help remember when to use which word, but memorizing some of the phrases above can't hurt.  You've got nothing to loose lose.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Have seen this error made many times. Great post.

  3. There's a lot of these kinds of mistakes that can make a writer look unprofessional. Like it's and its.

  4. I'm still looking for my marbles. They might be lost and gone forever. ;O)

    My “L” post is right here: http://www.word-nerd-speaks.com/2011/04/long-long-list.html

  5. Loose/lose is one of the ones that really bugs me!

  6. This one is one of my pet peeves, for sure. I suspect that it's because they can't wrap their minds around LOSE having an OO sound, so they opt for LOOSE instead. Another language lesson well done, Marie Anne.

  7. I love the word play in your post!

    "Loose" and "lose" are the words I am worst at misusing because it is only an extra "o" distinguishing the two.

    My fingers can often get ahead of my brain while I'm typing and these two words only seem to compound the problem.

  8. I always get effect and affect mixed up. Feel free to correct me anytime you see me do it, it will be appreciated.

  9. This one is done in video games so often I want to scream. "Wow guys, we're gonna loose!" Um... no, we're going to "lose". Also, I am not "loose" nor am I a "looser". Best part is if you correct it, they will call you a "grammer snob". teehee Can't argue with genius, right?