Effective words to use instead of “very”
The word ‘very’ in English is, of course, very important. It is an adverb that we use to highlight or intensify adjectives: very nice, very big, very good. Using if frequently seems hard to avoid, but as an English teacher, I feel that students tend to use this word too much.
There are similar words that could be used instead. Now, we are going to cover these alternatives and show ways to diversify your vocabulary as much as possible. I hope you are all very excited about this!
flawless instead of very perfect
- Although he has just moved to the US, his English was flawless.
- I always stay at this hotel because their service is flawless.
freezing instead of very cold
- How can you go out right now? It is freezing outside!
- Don’t forget to bring a jacket because the weather forecast said it is going to be freezing tonight.
furious instead of very angry
- The boss was furious at the employee for being late three times in a row.
- I was furious when I missed my flight due to traffic.
filthy instead of very dirty
- My jacket was filthy since I had been wearing it for two weeks.
- Your hands are filthy! Go wash it before dinner.
spotless instead of very clean
- After we spent the whole morning cleaning, the house was spotless.
- I was amazed to see that the restaurant’s kitchen was in spotless condition.
gorgeous instead of very pretty
- I know it sounds cliché, but Venice is one of the most gorgeous places I have have visited.
- Every bride dreams of finding the most gorgeous dress for their wedding.
hideous instead of very ugly
- He looked great in all his profile pictures, but in real life he was hideous.
- Are you seriously considering painting the living room walls this hideous color?
odd instead of very strange
- That’s odd. I left my phone on the table but now I can’t find it.
- Don’t you think it is odd that Jerry never talks about himself?
extraordinary instead of very special
- Frida Kahlo was an extraordinary Mexican artist.
- The trip was extraordinary! We even swam with dolphins!
starving instead of very hungry
- I’m so starving! Let’s have lunch, shall we?
- I was away all day, when I got home my cats were simply starving.
exhausted instead of very tired
- After the 6km run, the competitors were completely exhausted.
- I got so exhausted from working all day that I just fell asleep on the bus.
terrified instead of very afraid
- I was terrified the first time had to speak in public to a large audience.
- The children got terrified after watching a horror movie on TV.
miserable instead of very sad
- He felt miserable when she broke up with him on his birthday.
- Whenever I am feeling miserable at work, I just go out with my friends afterwards and feel instantly better.
eager or thrilled instead of very excited
- The children were eager to meet Santa Claus at the mall.
- She was absolutely thrilled when she found out that she was getting the scholarship.
hilarious instead of very funny
- Have you seen Seinfeld? People say it is the most hilarious TV show ever!
- Lindsay thought the joke was so hilarious she couldn’t stop laughing.
huge instead of very big
- New York is such a huge city that I often get lost.
- The kids were amazed at how huge the elephants were at the zoo.
tiny instead of very small
- Although the rent was affordable, the apartment was too tiny for two people.
- People on the streets look so tiny from up here.
awful instead of very bad
- The weather was awful during the trip. Endless rain, wind and too cold at night.
- I accidentally added sugar instead of salt and the soup tasted awful.
wealthy instead of very rich
- Donald Trump has always been a wealthy man.
- Only the wealthy travel first class.
accomplished or gifted instead of very talented
- Leonardo da Vinci was a very accomplished artist.
- Harvard University is the perfect place for gifted students.
soaked instead of very wet
- I forgot my umbrella at home and now I’m soaked!
- Don’t let the dog in right now! He’s completely soaked.
You will also boost your speaking and writing by using other savvy synonyms for overused words in speaking and writing. or by discovering the formal or informal counterpart words.
Can you think of any other words to use instead of ‘very’? Let me know!