10 English Words Ending in -LESS

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In English, the suffix -less means “without.” For example, something that is “colorless” is white or transparent; it has no color. Someone who is “homeless” has no place to live; they are without a home.

Some of these words are simple like that, but others are not so obvious – you might be surprised by the definitions of restless and priceless, which we’ll learn in this lesson!

Today I’ll teach 10 English words that end in -less, with example sentences so you can see how they’re used. To practice these words, make sure to download the PDF guide to this lesson, because it has a quiz to see if you can use each word in the correct sentence.

1. Careless = Without Care

  • My sister is very careless with her possessions. For example, she left her laptop on the sofa and later someone sat on it.

2. Endless = Without End (Or Very Long)

  • I hate going to my aunt’s house, because then I have to listen to her endless stories about her dogs.

Note: We often use “endless” to exaggerate how long something is, as in the example above. It doesn’t necessarily mean there is NO end.

10 English Words Ending in -LESS Espresso English

3. selfless = generous in helping others, without being so focused on oneself

  • I admire my teacher’s selfless devotion – she stays after school for hours, giving students extra help.

4. Flawless = perfect

  • He spent $10,000 on a flawless diamond ring for his fiancée.

A flaw is a defect, so something that is flawless is perfect, it has no defects, nothing wrong with it.

10 English Words Ending in -LESS Espresso English

5. Helpless = Unable To Help Oneself

  • Little babies are so helpless. Their parents need to do everything for them.

Note: The opposite is NOT helpful – “helpful” means you can help others. The opposite of “helpless” is something like “self-sufficient” – someone who can take care of themselves.

6. Priceless = Extremely valuable

  • We saw many priceless works of art in the museum.

Something that is “priceless” is considered so valuable that you couldn’t buy it even with lots of money. This could be an object, as in the example, or it could be something non-physical – like the wonderful memories I have of my childhood are priceless.

7. useless / worthless = having no use or no value

  • The school website is useless – it hasn’t been updated since last year. We’ll have to call to get the current information.
  • My grandparents’ basement was full of worthless old newspapers and magazines.

We usually call things useless/worthless – calling a person useless/worthless is a very strong insult!

10 English Words Ending in -LESS Espresso English

8. Hopeless = Without Hope, Without Possibility Of Success

  • The doctors say it’s hopeless – his cancer can’t be cured.

Note: We usually describe a SITUATION as “hopeless.” For your own feelings, you should say “I have no hope,” not “I’m hopeless.” For the opposite, however, you can say “I’m hopeful” if you DO have hope!

9. Restless = Agitated, Not Relaxed

  • I’ve been sitting at a computer for the past 6 hours and I’m feeling restless – let’s go for a walk!

Note: Restless is NOT the same as tired. Instead, it describes a situation where you don’t want to stay still – you want to move, or change something. You can be restless due to emotions, worries, or simply after a long period of inactivity, as in the example.

10. Harmless = not causing damage

  • Don’t worry, my dog is harmless – he’s very gentle.
  • My best friend and I like to play harmless pranks on each other.

Harm is another word for damage or hurt, so a harmless dog is one who won’t bite or hurt you, and a harmless prank is one that doesn’t cause injury, damage property, or hurt someone’s feelings.

Those were 10 words ending in -less, but there are many more. What other ones do you know? See more here.

Your next step is to download the free lesson guide and try the quiz inside!

And if you want to expand your vocabulary by learning more than 1000 useful English words, check out my Vocabulary Builder Courses. They’ll help you learn and practice tons of words so that you can express yourself more fluently.

Learn more: 10 English words ending with -FUL

10 English Words Ending in -LESS Espresso English

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