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Lose vs Loose…Getting the right meaning

When choosing between “lose” and “loose” in content, it’s critical to use the one that fits your meaning.

Lose means to be without something.  If you can substitute “win” or “gain” and the sentence still makes sense, use “lose”.
Example:  If I don’t have a competitive quote, I will lose this account.
(“win” or “gain” could easily work in this sentence)

Loose means free or unattached.  If you can substitute an opposite, such as “tight”, and the sentence still makes sense, use “loose”.
Example:  The previous accountant was loose with the company’s budget.
(“tight” could work in the sentence)

It helps to say the sentence out loud to determine which one you really want to use.

You can also associate the meaning with the word itself.  With “loose”, you can associate the extra “o” in terms of a baggy fit or a “loose” fit, which makes room for that extra “o”.

Whether you want to lose weight or set your words loose on the world, thinking through your word choice can make a huge difference in getting your message across.


Learn more about “delivering the power of words” with Heiste Communications…

About Jill Heisterkamp

Jill Heisterkamp is Owner and Director of Heiste Communications and offers clients over 12 years of marketing and writing experience for a variety of projects - basically, if it has words, she writes it.


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