Pavement pedantry: your vs. you’re

Your or you're? Got it right? You're sure?  

By: Clare Howdle,   1 minute

Your vs. you're

Your vs. you’re

If you’re interested in getting your grammar right, you’re in the right place. It’s a common mistake, but a frustrating one – when a rogue apostrophe sneaks its way in somewhere it doesn’t belong.

Your and you’re are frequently muddled up. We’d like to think more as a slip of the fingers rather than people really not knowing the difference, but just in case…

Your is the possessive form of you. It usually works to modify the noun it goes in front of. For example in the phrase ‘Where are your sunglasses’, your is an adjective modifying the noun sunglasses.

However, you’re is a contraction of you are. It goes anywhere you are would normally go in a sentence – literally contracting and replacing those two words. For example, you’re wearing your sunglasses is the same as you are wearing your sunglasses.

Not tricky, but surprisingly easy to get wrong, if you’re in a rush. So try these on for size. Your or you’re?

Your/you’re still sunbathing? Your/you’re shoulders look a little red…

Your/you’re lunch looks delicious

Your/you’re not going to bang on about Brexit again are you?


So you know, we’ve thoroughly enjoyed our pavement ranting over the last few months but as we’ve crossed off most of the big boys on our hit list, we’re going to shift down a gear. So you’ll be hearing from us every fortnight with our latest grammatical gripes from here on in. Until then, pedants out.

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