makeup [make up]

zhonglin

Senior Member
Mandarin
Hi,

Instead of saying "to wear makeup", is it possible to say "to have make up on"? For example, she had no make up on when she shows up on tv.

Please advise, thank you
 
  • Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    Makeup meaning things like lipstick is one word, not two.

    Make up, two words, is a phrasal verb: "She made up an excuse for being late to work."
     

    Susan Y

    Senior Member
    British English
    Makeup meaning things like lipstick is one word, not two.

    Make up, two words, is a phrasal verb: "She made up an excuse for being late to work."
    In BE, the noun is usually written either make-up or make up. The verb, to make up, can mean either to put make up on or, as in Parla's example above, to invent. (It has other meanings too - see the WR dictionary).
     
    Last edited:

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    In BE the noun is usually written "make-up" (or "makeup"). I don't think you'll find it written as two words. British dictionaries support this view.
     

    Susan Y

    Senior Member
    British English
    In BE the noun is usually written "make-up" (or "makeup"). I don't think you'll find it written as two words. British dictionaries support this view.
    If you google "make up uk" you'll find plenty of examples where it is written as two words - for example:

    http://www.fragrancedirect.co.uk/make-up/icat/cosmetics : "Buy make up and cosmetics online"

    You will note that Donny B wrote it as two words in post 2 above, as do other BE speakers in previous threads on the subject.

    Personally, I always write "make up", whether as a noun or verb.
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    I did notice Donny's "make up", and it made me wince a little. Donny is of the male persuasion, I think. Do you have any dictionary evidence, Susan?;)

    I don't mean that we never see it written as two words, but it's unusual enough to stand out - as it did for me with Donny's post.
     

    Susan Y

    Senior Member
    British English
    . Do you have any dictionary evidence, Susan?;)
    I don't feel the need to look, being one who considers that a dictionary's role is to describe use rather than prescribe it; if educated native speakers such as Donny B and me use it, that's enough for me!

    But I do agree that make-up is a commoner spelling in BE.
     
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    DonnyB

    Sixties Mod
    English UK Southern Standard English
    I did notice Donny's "make up", and it made me wince a little. Donny is of the male persuasion, I think. Do you have any dictionary evidence, Susan?;)

    I don't mean that we never see it written as two words, but it's unusual enough to stand out - as it did for me with Donny's post.
    I was simply (post #2) answering the OP's question as asked. ;)

    Since we've now gone off-topic into a discussion as to whether "make(-)up" is hyphenated or not, I (as a male who doesn't actually wear any) have seen both variants used without causing me to wince, and, occasionally, all one word. The fact that "make up" as two words is also a phrasal verb meaning to fabricate is a bit irrelevant here. :(
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    I don't think it's off topic, since the word is the subject of the thread.

    Forgive me for being pedantic Susan, but in the UK ad you linked to they also write "Choose from a number of top selling brands", so they obviously aren't very particular about their hyphens.
     
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