Natural English Adjectives

Have you noticed how many adjectives end in -y?

It’s really natural for native English speakers to turn a word into an adjective just by adding a ‘y’ to the end – particulary in spoken and informal English. In this way, you can make what you say more descriptive and vivid. Here are a couple of examples for you:

“Using too many exclamation marks looks a bit salesy.” (= too much like sales and selling)
“I don’t like the cutesy language she uses.” (= too cute or childish)

Here are some more really natural and descriptive English adjectives for you. Try them out in your next English conversation!


When you’re antsy, you’re anxious or on edge. There’s also the expression “to have ants in your pants” and it means the same thing – you can’t settle or relax.

“He always gets antsy when he has to fly.”


If something is bumpy, it isn’t smooth. A road can be bumpy, and you can also use the word to mean that you meet problems in a project.

“We got off to a bumpy start, but the business is doing better now.”


When something is catchy, it means you keep singing it (like a song or tune) or repeating it.

“Their new slogan is really catchy.”

choosy / picky

A choosy or picky person can be hard to please, because they want only a particular thing. (Also “fussy”).

“She’s very choosy about the jewellery she wears.”
“He’s such a picky eater.”


If someone or something is classy, they show “class” – good manners, behaviour or dress sense. We sometimes also say “classy” in a sarcastic way to show that something is not good manners or acceptable behaviour.

“He would never talk badly of his ex. He’s classy in that way.”


I don’t think there’s a noun associated with “corny” but I included it in this list because it’s so descriptive. We talk about a corny joke (a joke which is too obvious) or something that you say as being corny, when it’s too obvious and a little embarrassing.

“That comedian is a bit corny”


A cuddly person is a person you want to cuddle or who likes cuddling. You can also describe slightly overweight people as cuddly.

“None of my cats are very cuddly.”


This can have two meanings. A dreamy person is someone who’s always day-dreaming, rather than being practical. But someone or something which is dreamy is what you dream of.

“She made this really dreamy dessert of lemon and cream.”


Edgy can mean nervous (as in “on edge”), but it also means new or experimental.

“There are a few edgy cafes in the town where you’ll meet some interesting people.”


Fancy means special or sophisticated.

“He took her out to a fancy restaurant for her birthday.”


When there’s frost on the ground, grass looks white because it’s partially frozen. When you give someone a frosty look, smile or glare, you look at them in a cold way. If you behave in a frosty way, you aren’t friendly.

“He gave me rather a frosty welcome. I wonder what the problem is.”


Gloss is a type of shiny paint, so if something is glossy, it has a shine. (A glossy magazine is a magazine with a shiny cover.)

“You’re so lucky to have such naturally glossy hair.”


When you’re greedy, you want more of something (like money or food) than is fair.

“Don’t be so greedy! Leave some chips for me!”


If you’re guilty of something, you did it. (Generally bad things.)

“Who ate all the biscuits?”

“Do you think he’s guilty of murder?”


A husky voice is low and sometimes rough. You can have a husky voice if you have a cold – or if you smoke too much!

“She sounded very husky on the phone.”


If you feel itchy, you have an itch and you need to scratch it. If you have “itchy feet”, you can’t stay in one place and you want to go travelling.

“I think I’m having a reaction to this perfume. My eyes are all itchy.”


A leafy part of a town or city has lots of trees or parks.

“They live in a very leafy road on the outskirts of the town.”


When something is scratchy, it scratches (irritates) your skin. Old records can also be scratchy, because they have scratches on them.

“I don’t like this jumper – it’s too scratchy.”


A sugary drink has too much sugar in it.

“Cut down on sugary drinks if you want to lose weight.”


If a part of your body is wobbly, it isn’t firm and it moves when you walk. You can also be wobbly if you can’t walk easily. Finally, you can also be wobbly if you’re emotionally off-balance.

“I was a bit wobbly after the operation.”
“I felt a bit wobbly when I heard the news.”