Do you know what’s interesting? 👀

The English adjective interesting can mean many things—and it can even have conflicting meanings! It can be used in a positive way to mean “intriguing” or “fascinating,” but it can also mean “strange” or even “unpleasant.” It can even mean the complete opposite: “boring.” That means interesting may not be especially descriptive or clear! 

Here are more, ahem, interesting ways to say what you really mean.

Synonyms with a positive tone

When you mean interesting in a positive way, like for something that is “of interest” to the speaker (or writer), there are many alternatives.

The synonym intriguing means “arousing one’s curiosity,” as in, This new recipe is intriguing, I think I will make it! 

Instead, you could use fascinating, “of great interest or attraction,” as in, What a fascinating idea! 

You could also say someone or something is amusing if it causes laughter or is of interest in a charming way—for example, I find their podcasts to be so amusing

If you’re describing writing or a book, other great options are compelling, “invoking interest or attention in a powerful way,” or the easily pronounceable unputdownable, “so engrossing one cannot stop reading it.”

Synonyms with a negative tone

Often things are interesting in a bad way, such as gossip or campy mystery films. 

Maybe we don’t understand something or someone so we hedge a bit and say they are, well, interesting to be more polite. This could be expressed instead as peculiar, strange, or odd, which can all mean “unusual in an unsettling way.” For example, Her way of telling a story is peculiar

If you really mean that something is of interest but very strange, then weird or even unpleasant may be more descriptive alternatives to interesting as in, Our trip to the beach on the rainy day was quite unpleasant

Slang synonyms for interesting

For more casual conversations, there are many alternatives to interesting that are considered slang. 

For example, sick, fab, and goated mean “amazing” or “great,” and are good replacements for the positive sense of interesting as in, That Duolingo comment on TikTok was goated. 

Many interesting options for interesting!

Next time you’re faced with using interesting, remember the many precise synonyms you can turn to instead! We hope you’ve found this post to be not only helpful, but also intriguing, fascinating, perhaps a bit amusing, and certainly unputdownable!