Friday, August 12, 2016
How to Use Loose, Lose and Lost
Loose vs lose vs lost
Aside from the fact that the words ‘lose,’ ‘loose’ and ‘lost’ sound similar, they have another thing in common. That is, they all pertain to ‘losing something.’ This is why many people use the word ‘lose’ when they mean ‘loose,’ or use ‘lost’ when to they mean ‘lose.’ This can create confusion to the reader so it is necessary to avoid any more mistakes in the future.
Lose is an action word used when something done pertains to ‘losing’. It is also the opposite of win. For example: “I am a forgetful person so I tend to lose my belongings most of the time.” In this example, we use lose to describe something that has been misplaced from one’s possession. Another example: “They’re all tough competitors. I think you are going to lose that competition.”
‘Lose’ is also used as an action word in some figurative sentences. “It is painful to lose a mother” (lose here means being deprived of someone due to death). “I lose my mind whenever I see you” (to become overwhelmed/anxious in certain circumstances).
Loose more specifically means ‘losing the quality of something’ rather than making specific actions that someone does. Therefore, it is used as an adjective to describe value rather than a verb that describes actions. Listed below are some examples on how to correctly use ‘loose’ in a sentence.
If you want to describe that you lost weight you say, “My jeans are too loose now.” Here, we describe how the jeans lost its quality. It is not an action that the jeans do to for you to lose weight. Another example: “You look more beautiful when your hair is loose and not in a bun.” The quality of the loose hair makes sense instead of saying ‘your hair is lose,’ which literally translates to hair being missing or misplaced.
‘Lost’ is simply the past participle and past tense of ‘lose.’ So whenever you try to discuss ‘lose’ in its past form, you use ‘lost’ instead. Also remember that since ‘lost’ is an action verb, it should be followed by a subject of some form to complete the subject-verb agreement in a sentence. Here are some examples: “The mother lost the car keys somewhere in the living room.” “I lost the competition. I should have dedicated more time in practice.”
“Let your hair lose” (This doesn’t make sense because a hair can’t lose in something. We are describing here so we use loose instead).
“You need to loose some weight” (This again doesn’t make sense because we are pertaining to an action – losing weight).
ü Loose – an adjective
ü Lose – a verb
ü Lost – past participle and present tense form of ‘lose’