American English

Definition of attractive adjective from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1(of a person) pleasant to look at, especially in a sexual way an attractive woman I like John but I don't find him attractive physically. Thesaurusbeautifulpretty handsome attractive lovely good-looking gorgeousThese words all describe people who are pleasant to look at.beautiful (especially of a woman or girl) very pleasant to look at:She looked stunningly beautiful that night.pretty (especially of a girl or woman) pleasant to look at:She's got a very pretty face. Pretty is used most often to talk about girls. When it is used to talk about a woman, it usually suggests that she is attractive, but not beautiful.handsome (of a man) pleasant to look at; (of a woman) pleasant to look at, with strong features rather than small, delicate ones:He was described as “tall, dark, and handsome.” Joan Crawford was a handsome woman.attractive (of a person) pleasant to look at, especially in a sexual way:She's a very attractive woman.lovely (of a woman) beautiful; very attractive; (of a man or woman) with a pleasant personality:She looked particularly lovely that night. They really are a lovely couple. When you describe someone as lovely, you are usually showing that you also have a feeling of affection for them.good-looking (of a person) pleasant to look at, often in a sexual way:She arrived with a very good-looking man.gorgeous (informal) (of a person) extremely attractive, especially in a sexual way:You look gorgeous!attractive or good-looking?If you describe someone as attractive or lovely, you often also mean that they have a pleasant personality as well as being pleasant to look at;good-looking describes only someone's physical appearance.Patterns a(n) beautiful/pretty/handsome/attractive/lovely/good-looking/gorgeous girl/woman/lady a(n) beautiful/handsome/attractive/good-looking/gorgeous boy/man a(n) beautiful/pretty/handsome/attractive/lovely/good-looking face a(n) beautiful/attractive/lovely smile
  2. 2(of a thing or a place) pleasant a big house with an attractive garden Your new glasses are very attractive. Antique furniture is used to make an attractive contrast with a modern setting. That's one of the less attractive aspects of her personality.
  3. 3having features or qualities that make something seem interesting and worth having synonym appealing an attractive offer/proposition They are able to offer attractive career opportunities to graduates. opposite unattractive
attractively adverb
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The room is arranged very attractively. attractively priced hotel rooms
attractiveness noun [uncountable]
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the attractiveness of traveling abroad
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: attractive