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We decided, after the wonderful response to our Favourite Word Poll  to ask our Facebook Followers to tell us their most hated word. That word that makes you shudder when heard, shiver when read and elicits a physical response no matter how you come across it.

Well you didn’t disappoint; well over a thousand of you responded and your answers surprised us somewhat. There are millions of words out there, so many to choose from and yet many of you seem to have a visceral distaste for the same things.

Be warned, there is profanity; this is a blog about hated words and we’re not about to censor them. You’re going to get them in all their glorious gruesomeness.


(adj) Slightly wet, marked by a fluid discharge.


(n) A woman’s genitals, an unpleasant or stupid person.


(n) Legless underpants worn by women and girls; knickers.


(vb) Have sexual intercourse with (someone). Damage, ruin something.


(n) Intense dislike.


(n) A contemptuous term for a black person.


(n) A thick yellowish or greenish opaque liquid produced in infected tissue.


(n) Derogatory: A person who has a mental disability.


(n) The thick viscous substance secreted by the mucous membranes of the respiratory passages.


(adj) Used for emphasis, especially to express anger or frustration.

Well there are the top ten. The fact that expletives were in there is no great surprise but, in the end they’re just words and the only power they have over us is the power we give them.

Here’s the rest, making up our top 50 words:


Feel free to add your own ‘most hated’ word in the comments and a huge thank you to everyone who joined in. We hope we haven’t left you feeling too nauseous.

Special thanks goes to for help with definitions.

Leave your vote


  • Elisabeth Cheries says:

    Moist has a place, just preferably not in a human context. No actually it does suit a gruseome murder. But in fluffy romance novels or steamy sex thrillers moist in that context is rather repugnant. So I will in part agree with this most hated word.

    I however must fully and emphatically disagree with–Fuck. A word seldom has as many uses as does this gem. It can represent just about any context, any emotion and adds irrefutable emphasis to mistakes, arguments and sex. Do I want my 12 year old slinging it around , or waving it like a flag defending her right to free speech? No. And even I confess that “awe fuck” is far more worthy of a mouthful of soap than “awe fudge” but “awe fudge” isn’t nearly as funny. The well placed fuck has its purpose and even sometimes the poorly placed too has its own misguided use. I implore most hated word voters to reconsider and reinstate fuck to its proper throne.

    As for my own hated words, try “twerk” or “pulchritude” though the former better represents its meaning than does the latter!

  • Crystalenia says:

    I was a bit surprised by some of the words that ended up on this list…
    I mean, why should someone hate the word “belly” for example? It’s a part of our body…. Or “Marriage” – now seriously, why would someone hate this word? It’s not a bad word, it’s not cursing, it’s not slang…

    I’m a bit confused about those results….

  • Dirk says:

    There are zero words in your list that I hate. In fact I’m rather fond of the word moist. I do hate the “word” impactful. Hey Aikman! Impactful is not a word you troglodyte. Take some grammar lessons and quit butchering your native language. I have issues with epic as well, but only as it relates to it’s misuse, and overuse in current internet articles. I have no issues with its use in a literary manner.

  • SuziQ says:

    The word, “hubby,” gets on my nerves.

  • Stefanie R. says:

    Hate the word transparent because of it’s over use when trying to show your honest. The words test/exam are also words I don’t like because of the stress associated with them.

  • Barbara says:

    Elizabeth, the word “awe” you wrote is used inappropriately. “Awe” means “fascination,” to give an example. If you want to say something in front of “fudge,” you say “Aw,” or “Awww.” That said, any gerund gets on my nerves. This, for those who weren’t taught it, is a verb used as a noun. “I took a SIP of my hot tea.” “She went for a nice SWIM.” “Let’s go for a DRIVE.”

  • Susan says:

    It never occurred to me to that you could hate words. By themselves they are neutral. What I hate is the way some words are used. For example grow is for vegetables not businesses. You graduate from college no graduate college.

  • Tami says:

    There are words I dislike because they are vulgar, such as f*ck. It is overused to the point that “overused” is no longer strong enough. It has lost its vulgarity for many and is used in public without consideration for who is listening. It is also randomly inserted into sentences where it has no meaning other than “I don’t have the vocabulary to express what I really mean, so I’ll say this instead.”

    There are also words that I dislike just because they are ugly. Bulwark is a perfect example. The definition doesn’t matter, it’s just grating to hear and worse to say.

  • Dave says:

    How many of these are actually hating the words themselves? In most cases surely it’s hating the concept that the word denotes. Plenty of nasty concepts here, represented by perfectly ordinary words. I know “moist” seems to be a pet hate among many (famously Susie Dent) but have no idea why. How else are we supposed to describe the not-quite-dry state of those antibacterial wipes that come in sealed sachets? “Damp” covers the same concept but seems to have overtones of being unintentionally (rather than deliberately) not-quite-dry.
    Surely if one were to hate a word in and of itself, it should be for reasons to do with its own linguistic attributes? Words that are newly coined, but which define a concept for which another long-established word already exists?
    Words that are awkward to pronounce? (“February”)
    Words that too many people mispronounce or misspell? (“mischievous”)
    Words that were coined based on a false etymological assumption? (“mentee”; various types of “-copter” or “-holic”)

    That said, I can see that some of them (notably the C-word and N-word) would be hated by many as a result of their acquired cultural baggage because of the way they’ve been used historically.

  • Shellie says:

    I hate the word “gentle.” I hear it a lot, and I’ve noticed I hear it more and more lately. I watch yoga videos on silent – each one has the word like 10 times.

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