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Difference Between Loose and Lose

Loose vs Lose

Loose and lose are two terms commonly misused because people tend to pronounce them the same. However, loose is completely different from lose and just about the similarity they have between them is their pronunciation that is wrongly done by most people.


Loose is an adjective that means ‘not tight’ or ‘free of any constraints’. It is commonly used to describe the state of your clothes or any fixture, as in ‘That shirt is loose.’ And ‘The door hinges are loose.’ It is also a verb that means ‘to set free’. As a verb it is used as ‘Let the dogs loose!’


Lose is commonly a verb that means to ‘no longer have’, ‘to misplace’, ‘be unsuccessful in earning money in a business’ or to ‘fail to win’. Examples of its usage are: ‘I’ll lose my job if I don’t get this deal’ and ‘If I lose my wallet, my mom is going to kill me.’ and ‘The Lakers are going to lose against the Celtics in the finals.’

Difference between Loose and Lose

Loose and lose are commonly misused and wrongly interchanged because of the English language’s lack of consistency in the pronunciation of words ending in ‘oose’ and ‘ose’. For example, choose is pronounced with a ‘Z’ sound at the end, while loose is pronounced with the ‘S’ sound at the end. Chose is also pronounced with an ‘S’ sound at the end, but lose is pronounced with the ‘Z’ sound. The two terms are completely unrelated to each other and the types of word the type of usage they are related with. Loose is an adjective while lose is a verb, although loose can be used as a verb as well.

If people can remember that ‘loose rhymes with noose’ and that ‘lose is loose that lost an o’ then they won’t misuse and mispronounce these two words again.

In brief:

• Loose is mainly an adjective that means ‘not tight’ or ‘free of any constraints’ and a verb that means ‘to set free’. It is pronounce with an ‘S’ sound at the end.

• Lose is a verb the means ‘to no longer have’, ‘to misplace’, ‘to fail in making money’ and ‘to not win’. It is pronounced with a ‘Z’ sound at the end.


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