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Cecilia
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May 2, 2020 2:44 PM
Comments · 4
I have similar problem and if I am confused about the exact meaning I use Englisg-English dictionary and read the definition of the word and sample sentenses.
https://dictionary.cambridge.org
May 2, 2020
The best solution to the general problem of differentiating between words with very slight variations in meaning is not to rely so much on translations once you are past the beginner level. It's best to use a good dictionary in the target language, with clear definitions, examples, synonyms, antonyms, and a corpus you can reference. In this way, you can form a complete picture of the meaning.
May 2, 2020
In the context of someone's appearance, these words are all positive, but they do each have a distinct meaning:

Good-looking: pleasing to the eye, attractive.
Beautiful: not merely pleasing, but delightful visually. It's stronger than "good-looking". We describe uncommonly attractive or very good-looking people as beautiful. It is usually reserved for women. "Handsome" is preferred for men.
Well-groomed: Used to describe someone who pays attention to their personal hygiene. There is no bad breath nor any unpleasant body odor, their hair is cut and styled and any facial hair is controlled. It implies control over and taming of nature.
To look put-together: This means that you look tidy and that your outfit is coordinated. Everything fits well together. It doesn't look messy, sloppy or as though you've put no thought into what you are wearing. The clothes are usually clean, ironed, and your general appearance is well-groomed.
Chic: elegant, well-dressed, though not necessarily fashionable.
May 2, 2020
Dear Cecilia,

I am Dr. Can, and I am one of the new professional teachers here in the iTalki Platform.
It is indeed quite challenging to differentiate the words that essentially mean the same thing.
I would recommend not worrying about it and trying to practice English as much as possible by both active (Writing,Speaking) and passive(Reading,Listening) practices. As you will see the new words you have learnt in context, you will gather a better understanding of what word is being used in which context.
Another tip is looking at example sentences given for each word within the dictionary. This will also give you an idea about on what context you should be using this word.
In Linguistics, this is something we call ''collocations''. It means the words that we tend to see together.
There are also special collocation dictionaries you may find online.

I hope these tips help,
Do not hesitate to contact for other questions.
I wish you all the best with your studies!

Dr. Can
May 2, 2020
Cecilia
Language Skills
Chinese (Mandarin), English
Learning Language
English