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Impressive vs. Impressing: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Updated on December 25, 2023
Impressive describes something that evokes admiration, while impressing is the act of causing such admiration.
Impressive vs. Impressing

Key Differences

Impressive is an adjective that describes something awe-inspiring or notable, such as an impressive feat, whereas impressing is the present participle that describes the action of evoking admiration, as in someone is impressing the audience with their speech.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 08, 2023
An impressive object or person stands out due to inherent qualities or achievements, like an impressive painting, while impressing refers to the ongoing action or process, like a magician impressing the crowd.
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Nov 08, 2023
Use impressive when you wish to express the resulting feeling of admiration, such as in "The view from the mountain was impressive," and use impressing when discussing the action, "She is impressing judges with her performance."
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Nov 08, 2023
Impressive can be used to describe a lasting state of something that consistently evokes admiration, such as "His knowledge of history is impressive," whereas impressing implies a current, possibly transient act of making an impact, such as "He is impressing upon us the importance of diligence."
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 08, 2023
The word impressive often conveys a passive state of being admired, like "The sculpture’s size was impressive," while impressing is active, illustrating the process of invoking admiration, as in "The chef is impressing diners with innovative dishes."
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Nov 08, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Part of Speech

Adjective (descriptive)
Verb (active)
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Usage

To describe qualities that evoke admiration
To describe the act of evoking admiration
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Temporal Aspect

Static quality
Ongoing action
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Example Context

“The grandeur of the palace is impressive.”
“The speaker is impressing the audience right now.”
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Implication

State of being admired
Process of causing admiration
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Nov 08, 2023
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Impressive and Impressing Definitions

Impressive

Evoking admiration through size, quality, or skill.
The athlete’s record is impressive.
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Nov 08, 2023

Impressing

Enforcing one’s ideas or presence strongly.
He is impressing his views on the committee.
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Impressive

Remarkable and striking in nature.
The vastness of the canyon is impressive.
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Impressing

The process of creating an imprint or mark.
The stamp is impressing a clear design on the paper.
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Impressive

Commanding attention because of great quality or performance.
Her command over the subject was impressive.
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Impressing

Actively evoking admiration or respect.
The musician is impressing the audience with her skill.
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Impressive

Deserving praise because of an excellent display.
The student’s improvement was impressive.
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Impressing

The ongoing action of compelling recognition of one’s abilities.
She is impressing her new colleagues with her expertise.
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Impressive

Distinguished by excellence.
The clarity of the presentation was impressive.
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Impressing

Making a significant impact or effect.
The teacher is impressing upon the students the importance of honesty.
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Impressive

Making a strong positive impression; inspiring admiration or awe
An impressive achievement.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressing

To affect strongly, often favorably
Wrote down whatever impressed me during the journey.
Was impressed by the child's sincerity.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressive

Making, or tending to make, a positive impression; having power to impress
An impressive speech
An impressive movie
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressing

To produce or attempt to produce a vivid impression or image of
A scene that impressed itself on her memory.
Parents that impress the value of money on their children.
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Impressive

Capable of being impressed.
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Impressing

To mark or stamp with pressure
Impressed the wax with a design.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressive

Appealing.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressing

To apply with pressure; press
Impressed the stamp onto the wax.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressive

Making, or tending to make, an impression; having power to impress; adapted to excite attention and feeling, to touch the sensibilities, or affect the conscience; as, an impressive discourse; an impressive scene.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressing

To compel (a person) to serve in the military, particularly in the naval forces, especially by seizure.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressive

Capable of being impressed.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressing

To seize (property) by force or authority, especially for military purposes; confiscate.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressive

Making a strong or vivid impression;
An impressive ceremony
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Impressing

(Law) To impose a constructive trust or a lien upon property, as a matter of equity, to protect a person without legal title but with a legally recognized interest.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressive

Producing a strong effect;
Gave an impressive performance as Othello
A telling gesture
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressing

The act of impressing
A design left by impress of a seal.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressing

A mark or pattern of influence produced by someone or something; an impression
A politician who left her impress on foreign policy.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressing

A stamp or seal meant to be impressed.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressing

Impressment.
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Oct 19, 2023

Impressing

Present participle of impress
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Oct 19, 2023

Repeatedly Asked Queries

What makes something impressive?

Qualities or achievements that evoke admiration make something impressive.
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Nov 08, 2023

What types of things are often called impressive?

Grand architecture, significant achievements, or advanced skills.
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Can a person be impressive?

Yes, through notable characteristics or accomplishments.
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How do you know if something is impressive?

If it stands out remarkably and is worthy of praise.
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Can animals be impressing?

Yes, if their actions or abilities evoke admiration.
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Is impressing a continuous action?

Yes, it refers to the ongoing process of evoking admiration.
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Is impressing always intentional?

Not always; it can occur without the active intent to influence.
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What is the verb form of impressive?

Impress is the verb form, with impressing being its present participle.
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Nov 08, 2023

Can an old artifact be impressive?

Absolutely, if it evokes admiration due to its history or craftsmanship.
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Nov 08, 2023

Is impressive always positive?

Typically, it denotes a positive reaction, but it can be used in a neutral context.
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Can food be impressive?

Certainly, if it’s exceptionally well-prepared or presented.
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Can technology be impressive?

Yes, especially when it represents a significant advancement.
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Can impressing be negative?

While usually positive, impressing can be negative if the influence is unwanted.
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Can landscapes be impressive?

Yes, natural beauty often evokes admiration.
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Do you need an audience to be impressing?

Typically, impressing involves an observer, but it can be a personal endeavor.
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Is impressing about current actions only?

Yes, it's related to what is currently happening.
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What's the difference in usage between impressive and impressing?

Impressive describes, while impressing implies active influence.
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Does impressive or impressing have a stronger impact?

Impressive often denotes a lasting impact, while impressing is more about immediate effect.
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Can a speech be impressive?

Yes, if it’s particularly well-delivered or insightful.
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Can someone be trying to impress without success?

Yes, impressing involves the attempt, not necessarily the outcome.
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Nov 08, 2023

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About Author
Shumaila Saeed
Written by
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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