TOUGH: Synonyms and Related Words. What is Another Word for TOUGH?

Need another word that means the same as “tough”? Find 113 synonyms and 30 related words for “tough” in this overview.

The synonyms of “Tough” are: baffling, elusive, knotty, problematic, problematical, rugged, hard, ruffianly, toughened, sturdy, bad, durable, strong, resilient, resistant, firm, solid, substantial, sound, stout, indestructible, unbreakable, rigid, stiff, inflexible, chewy, leathery, gristly, stringy, fibrous, sinewy, cartilaginous, hardy, gritty, determined, resolute, dogged, stalwart, arduous, onerous, difficult, demanding, heavy, taxing, burdensome, tiring, exhausting, punishing, wearying, laborious, strenuous, exacting, troublesome, formidable, stressful, herculean, thorny, tricky, ticklish, prickly, perplexing, puzzling, mystifying, bothersome, irksome, intractable, strict, stern, severe, harsh, hard-hitting, adamant, unyielding, unbending, uncompromising, unsentimental, unsympathetic, rough, rowdy, unruly, disorderly, violent, wild, lawless, criminal, street fighter, goon, hood, hoodlum, punk, strong-armer, thug, toughie, bully, hooligan, roughneck, ruffian, yob, yobbo, yobo, brute, bully boy, gangster, desperado, put up with it, grin and bear it, keep at it, keep going, stay with it, see it through, see it through to the end

Tough as a Noun

Definitions of "Tough" as a noun

According to the Oxford Dictionary of English, “tough” as a noun can have the following definitions:

  • A rough and violent man.
  • A cruel and brutal fellow.
  • Someone who learned to fight in the streets rather than being formally trained in the sport of boxing.
  • An aggressive and violent young criminal.

Synonyms of "Tough" as a noun (21 Words)

bruteSomething awkward, difficult, or unpleasant.
What an unfeeling little brute you are.
bullyA person who habitually seeks to harm or intimidate those whom they perceive as vulnerable.
He is a ranting domineering bully.
bully boyA hired thug.
desperadoA desperate or reckless person, especially a criminal.
gangsterA criminal who is a member of gang.
Gangster movies.
goonAn awkward stupid person.
I don t want to deal with Jack today he s such a goon.
hoodA structure or marking resembling a hood on the head or neck of an animal.
A jacket with a detachable hood.
hoodlumAn aggressive and violent young criminal.
They were the professional gangsters of New York hoodlums and racketeers.
hooliganA violent young troublemaker, typically one of a gang.
Hooligan behaviour.
punkAn admirer or player of punk rock typically characterized by coloured spiked hair and clothing decorated with safety pins or zips.
There s never been a better time to take our streets back from the punks.
roughA disreputable and violent person.
I did a rough to work out the scale of the lettering.
roughneckA rough and uncouth person.
The usual roughnecks and gangsters.
rowdyA cruel and brutal fellow.
We are accused of being rowdies in the pub.
ruffianA violent criminal or troublemaker.
street fighterPeople living or working on the same street.
strong-armerAn aggressive and violent young criminal.
toughieAn aggressive and violent young criminal.
Who do you admire most That s a toughie.
yobA rude, noisy, and aggressive young person.
yoboA cruel and brutal fellow.

Usage Examples of "Tough" as a noun

  • A gang of toughs.

Tough as a Verb

Definitions of "Tough" as a verb

According to the Oxford Dictionary of English, “tough” as a verb can have the following definitions:

  • Endure a period of hardship or difficulty.

Synonyms of "Tough" as a verb (7 Words)

grin and bear itTo draw back the lips and reveal the teeth, in a smile, grimace, or snarl.
keep at itFail to spoil or rot.
keep goingMaintain by writing regular records.
put up with itEstimate.
see it throughImagine; conceive of; see in one’s mind.
see it through to the endObserve as if with an eye.
stay with itDwell.

Tough as an Adjective

Definitions of "Tough" as an adjective

According to the Oxford Dictionary of English, “tough” as an adjective can have the following definitions:

  • Not given to gentleness or sentimentality.
  • Feeling physical discomfort or pain (`tough' is occasionally used colloquially for `bad.
  • (of food, especially meat) difficult to cut or chew.
  • Violent and lawless.
  • Able to endure hardship or pain.
  • Used to express a lack of sympathy with someone.
  • Physically toughened.
  • Resistant to cutting or chewing.
  • Very difficult; severely testing stamina or resolution.
  • Strong and prone to violence.
  • Demonstrating a strict and uncompromising approach.
  • Unfortunate or hard to bear.
  • (of an area) notorious for violence and crime.
  • Used to express sympathy with someone in a difficult situation.
  • Making great mental demands; hard to comprehend or solve or believe.
  • Difficult and requiring determination or effort.
  • (of a substance or object) strong enough to withstand adverse conditions or rough handling.
  • Substantially made or constructed.
  • Having the confidence and determination to cope in difficult situations.

Synonyms of "Tough" as an adjective (85 Words)

adamantRefusing to be persuaded or to change one’s mind.
He is adamant that he is not going to resign.
arduousCharacterized by effort to the point of exhaustion; especially physical effort.
An arduous journey.
badFeeling physical discomfort or pain tough is occasionally used colloquially for bad.
A bad listener.
bafflingMaking great mental demands; hard to comprehend or solve or believe.
The crime is a baffling mystery for the police.
bothersomeAnnoying; troublesome.
Most childhood stomach aches though bothersome aren t serious.
burdensomeUndesirably restrictive.
The burdensome task of preparing the income tax return.
cartilaginous(of a vertebrate animal) having a skeleton of cartilage.
chewyRequiring much chewing.
The rye bread has a nice chewy texture.
criminal(of an action or situation) deplorable and shocking.
A criminal offence.
demandingRequiring more than usually expected or thought due; especially great patience and effort and skill.
He was a demanding baby and rarely slept through the night.
determinedHaving been learned or found or determined especially by investigation.
A determined effort to reduce inflation.
difficultCharacterized by or causing hardships or problems.
The questions are too difficult for the children.
disorderlyUndisciplined and unruly.
A disorderly pile of books.
doggedHaving or showing tenacity and grim persistence.
Dogged persistence.
durableAble to withstand wear, pressure, or damage; hard-wearing.
Porcelain enamel is strong and durable.
elusiveMaking great mental demands; hard to comprehend or solve or believe.
A haunting elusive odor.
exactingSevere and unremitting in making demands.
An exacting job.
exhaustingProducing exhaustion.
An exhausting job in the hot sun.
fibrousFull of sinews; especially impossible to chew.
A good fibrous root system.
firmMarked by firm determination or resolution not shakable.
We became firm friends.
formidableInspiring fear.
The formidable prospect of major surgery.
gristlyDifficult to chew.
Gristly bits of beef.
grittyWilling to face danger.
Her eyes felt gritty.
hardUnfortunate or hard to bear.
Had hard luck.
hard-hittingAggressively and persistently persuasive.
hardy(of a plant) able to survive outside during winter.
A hardy breed of cattle.
harshDisagreeable to the senses.
Harsh irritating smoke filled the hallway.
heavyLarge and powerful especially designed for heavy loads or rough work.
Heavy traffic.
herculeanExtremely difficult; requiring the strength of a Hercules.
A herculean task.
indestructibleVery long lasting.
Indestructible plastic containers.
inflexibleIncapable of adapting or changing to meet circumstances.
An inflexible iron bar.
intractableNot tractable; difficult to manage or mold.
The most intractable issue of our era.
irksomeIrritating; annoying.
Petty regulations were becoming very irksome.
knottyExtremely difficult or complex.
A knotty problem.
laboriousCharacterized by effort to the point of exhaustion; especially physical effort.
The work is very slow and laborious.
lawlessDisobedient to or defiant of law.
Lawless bands roaming the plains.
leatheryResembling or made to resemble leather; tough but pliable.
Brown leathery skin.
mystifyingOf an obscure nature.
Rituals totally mystifying to visitors from other lands.
onerousNot easily borne; wearing.
My duties weren t onerous I only had to greet the guests.
perplexingLacking clarity of meaning; causing confusion or perplexity.
A perplexing problem.
pricklyResembling prickles.
My skin feels prickly.
problematicOpen to doubt or debate.
If you ever get married which seems to be extremely problematic.
problematicalOpen to doubt or debate.
The weighting of votes was particularly problematical.
punishingCharacterized by effort to the point of exhaustion; especially physical effort.
Set a punishing pace.
puzzlingNot clear to the understanding.
A puzzling statement.
resilient(of a person or animal) able to withstand or recover quickly from difficult conditions.
Babies are generally far more resilient than new parents realize.
resistantDisposed to or engaged in defiance of established authority.
Some of the old Churches are resistant to change.
resoluteCharacterized by quickness and firmness.
Stood resolute against the enemy.
rigidIncapable of adapting or changing to meet circumstances.
A face rigid with pain.
roughNot fully worked out or including every detail.
The lifeboat crew braved rough seas to rescue a couple.
rowdyNoisy and disorderly.
It was a rowdy but good natured crowd.
ruffianlyViolent and lawless.
The more ruffianly element.
ruggedVery difficult; severely testing stamina or resolution.
The binoculars are compact lightweight and rugged.
severeSeverely simple.
A severe attack of asthma.
sinewy(of a person or animal) lean and muscular.
A short sinewy sunburnt man.
solidOf good quality and condition solidly built.
Solid gold.
soundIn excellent physical condition.
A sound argument.
He was of stalwart build.
sternOf a stern or strict bearing or demeanor forbidding in aspect.
A stern face.
stiff(of a semi-liquid substance) viscous; thick.
A palace guardsman stiff as a poker.
Stout hearts.
strenuousCharacterized by or performed with much energy or force.
The government made strenuous efforts to upgrade the quality of the teaching profession.
stressfulCausing mental or emotional stress.
Corporate finance work can be stressful.
strictCharacterized by strictness severity or restraint.
A strict vegetarian.
stringyLean and sinewy.
The meat was a bit stringy but delicious.
strongStrong and sure.
His imagery made a strong impression on the critics.
sturdyHaving rugged physical strength; inured to fatigue or hardships.
The bike is sturdy enough to cope with bumpy tracks.
substantialStrongly built or made.
The first meal of the day should be substantial.
taxingNot easily borne; wearing.
A taxing schedule.
thornyCausing distress, difficulty, or trouble.
Tangled thorny branches.
ticklish(of a situation or problem) difficult or tricky and requiring careful handling.
I m ticklish on the feet.
tiringCausing one to need rest or sleep; fatiguing.
It had been a tiring day.
toughenedPhysically toughened.
trickyMarked by skill in deception.
A tricky recipe to follow.
troublesomeCausing difficulty or annoyance.
A troublesome situation.
unbendingIncapable of adapting or changing to meet circumstances.
An unbending will to dominate.
unbreakableNot liable to break or able to be broken easily.
Unbreakable plastic dinnerwear.
uncompromisingNot making concessions.
Took an uncompromising stance in the peace talks.
unrulyUnwilling to submit to authority.
The little boy s parents think he is spirited but his teacher finds him unruly.
unsentimentalFacing facts or difficulties realistically and with determination.
The speeches were short and unsentimental.
unsympatheticNot showing approval or favour towards an idea or action.
A job temperamentally unsympathetic to him.
unyieldingStubbornly unyielding T S Eliot.
An unyielding head support.
violentMarked by extreme intensity of emotions or convictions inclined to react violently fervid.
Violent passions.
wearyingProducing exhaustion.
A long wearying journey.
wildProduced from wild animals or plants without cultivation.
Wild geese.

Usage Examples of "Tough" as an adjective

  • A tough character.
  • Police have been getting tough with drivers.
  • He was feeling tough after a restless night.
  • The tough bottoms of his feet.
  • It was a tough job.
  • Tough new laws on tobacco advertising.
  • Poor kid. It's tough on her.
  • A tough break.
  • He liked editors who were tough enough to make the grade.
  • Some plastics are as tough as metal.
  • I feel the way I feel, and if you don't like it, tough.
  • She was as tough as old boots.
  • A tough all-weather fabric.
  • A tough part of the town.
  • Tough young teenagers.
  • The hastily prepared steak was tough.
  • It's a tough life.
  • Tough rucksacks for climbers.
  • Tough street gangs.
  • The competition was tough.
  • We have six tough matches in a row.

Associations of "Tough" (30 Words)

bravePeople who are brave.
He put up a brave fight before losing.
broganA thick and heavy shoe.
burlyMuscular and heavily built.
Had a tall burly frame.
firmMarked by firm determination or resolution not shakable.
We firmly believed it.
gruffBrusque and surly and forbidding.
She spoke with a gruff masculine voice.
hardCausing great damage or hardship.
Prejudices die hard.
hardenedUsed of persons emotionally hardened.
Hardened criminals.
hardheadedGuided by practical experience and observation rather than theory.
A hardheaded appraisal of our position.
hardyHaving rugged physical strength; inured to fatigue or hardships.
Strawberries are hardy and easy to grow.
husky(of a voice or utterance) sounding low-pitched and slightly hoarse.
The husky stem of a palm tree.
inflexibleResistant to being bent.
An inflexible law.
inuredMade tough by habitual exposure- Robert Lynd- V.S.Pritchett.
A peasant dark lean faced wind inured.
manlinessThe fact of being typically male; masculinity.
The author s alleged lack of manliness.
masculineA masculine word or form.
He is outstandingly handsome and robust very masculine.
muscularHaving a robust muscular body build characterized by predominance of structures bone and muscle and connective tissue developed from the embryonic mesodermal layer.
The muscular and passionate Fifth Symphony.
potentHaving great power, influence, or effect.
A potent cup of tea.
raspyUnpleasantly harsh or grating in sound.
A persistent raspy cough.
resoluteFirm in purpose or belief; characterized by firmness and determination.
Faced with a resolute opposition.
rigidityThe physical property of being stiff and resisting bending.
The rigidity of the school system.
rigidnessThe physical property of being stiff and resisting bending.
robustUncompromising and forceful.
A robust metal cabinet.
rowdyNoisy and disorderly.
It was a rowdy but good natured crowd.
solidOf good quality and condition solidly built.
The bank is solid and will survive this attack.
stalwartUsed especially of persons.
The stalwarts of the Labour Party.
strongRelating to or denoting the strongest of the known kinds of force between particles which acts between nucleons and other hadrons when closer than about 10 cm so binding protons in a nucleus despite the repulsion due to their charge and which conserves strangeness parity and isospin.
Gave a strong pull on the rope.
sturdyNot making concessions.
The bike is sturdy enough to cope with bumpy tracks.
uncompromisingNot making concessions.
The uncompromising ugliness of the era s buildings.
unyieldingStubbornly unyielding T S Eliot.
His unyielding faith.
vigorousStrong and active physically or mentally.
Gave her skirt a vigorous shake.
virileCharacterized by energy and vigor.
He was a powerful virile man.

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