Every Day or Everyday?

by Craig Shrives

What Is the Difference between "Every Day" and "Everyday"?

"Every day" and "everyday" are not interchangeable. They have different meanings.
  • Every day. "Every day" is similar in meaning to "each day." For example:
    • I work every day.
    • Every man is a damn fool for at least five minutes every day. (Author Elbert Hubbard)
    • (The phrase "every day" is made up of a determiner ("every") and a noun ("day").)
  • Everyday. "Everyday" means "normal" or "ordinary." For example:
    • Polishing boots is an everyday task for a soldier.
    • Why are these so expensive? They are everyday items.
    • ("Everyday" is an adjective.)
every day or everyday?

More about "Every Day" and "Everyday"

Every Day

"Every day" (two words) can usually be substituted with "each day." (In this expression, the word "every" is an indefinite determiner that modifies the noun "day.")

Here are some example sentences with "every day." (Try substituting "every day" with "each day"):
  • Every day is a good day to be alive, whether the sun's shining or not. (Singer Marty Robbins)
  • Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year. (Author Ralph Waldo Emerson)
  • Start every day off with a smile and get it over with. (Comedian W C Fields)
  • Every day brings new choices. (Author Martha Beck)


"Everyday" (one word) is similar to "normal," "ordinary," or "usual." ("Everyday" is an adjective.)

Here are some example sentences with "everyday":
  • Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life. (Poet Berthold Auerbach)
  • The whole of science is nothing more than a refinement of everyday thinking. (Physicist Albert Einstein)
  • I think it's important to find the little things in everyday life that make you happy. (Singer Paula Cole)

Use "Every Day" If "Each Day" Works

Like "every," the word "each" is a determiner. If "each" works as a perfect substitute for "every" in your sentence, then you should be using "every day" not "everyday." If "each day" does not work well (i.e., you feel "normal" would be a better replacement), then you should be using "everyday." For example:
  • Success is nothing more than a few simple disciplines, practiced every day. (American entrepreneur Jim Rohn)
  • (As "practiced each day" works perfectly, "every day" is correct.)
  • Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life. (Artist Pablo Picasso)
  • (As "dust of each day life" sounds wrong, "every day" must be wrong. As "normal" sounds okay, "everyday" is correct.)

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See Also

adverse or averse? affect or effect? appraise or apprise? avenge or revenge? bare or bear? complement or compliment? dependant or dependent? discreet or discrete? disinterested or uninterested? e.g. or i.e.? envy or jealousy? imply or infer? its or it's? material or materiel? poisonous or venomous? practice or practise? principal or principle? tenant or tenet? who's or whose? Glossary of easily confused words Glossary of common errors Glossary of grammatical terms What are adjectives?

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