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Synonyms of tough in English:


  • 1 they had tough leather gloves
    hard-wearing, long-lasting, heavy-duty, well built, made to last
    [Antonyms] soft, fragile, flimsy
  • 2 the hastily prepared steak was tough
    [Antonyms] tender
  • 3 he must have been a tough little lad to have survived it all
    resilient, strong, hardy, gritty, determined, resolute, dogged, stalwart;
    rugged, fit, robust, powerful, red-blooded, doughty;
    hardened, cynical, hard-bitten
    informal hard, (as) tough as old boots
    [Antonyms] weak, sentimental
  • 4 he conceded the need for tough sentencing the police will be told to get tough on car theft
    strict, stern, severe, hard, harsh, firm, hard-hitting, adamant, inflexible, unyielding, unbending, uncompromising, unsentimental, unsympathetic;
    informal hard-nosed, hard-boiled
    North American informal badass
    [Antonyms] soft, light
  • 5 a tough area of London
    rough, rowdy, unruly, disorderly, violent, wild, lawless, lawbreaking, criminal;
    vicious, callous, hardened
  • 6 my father had a tough job underground
    [Antonyms] easy
  • 7 their book raises tough questions for American policy-makers
    difficult, hard, knotty, thorny, baffling, tricky, ticklish, prickly, perplexing, puzzling, mystifying, troublesome, bothersome, irksome, intractable
    [Antonyms] easy
  • 8 the tough way of life of a fisherman
    harsh, hard, austere, rigorous, rugged, spartan, bleak, grim, straitened, forbidding, cruel, savage, hostile, unfriendly, dark, dire, rough, taxing, exacting, disagreeable, unpleasant, awful
    [Antonyms] easy
  • 9 informal they had tough luck when a shot bounced off the crossbar
    unfortunate, unlucky, hard, unpleasant, regrettable, distressing
    informal too bad
    [Antonyms] good, lucky
  • noun

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  • a gang of toughs
    informal hard man, roughneck, yob, yobbo, heavy, bruiser, tough guy, toughie, gorilla, yahoo
    North American informal hood
    Australian/New Zealand informal hoon
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