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Phrasal Verbs for IELTS Speaking Test

150 Phrasal Verbs for IELTS Speaking

1. Appearance:

  • Dress up: To wear formal or stylish clothes, especially for a special occasion. Example: "She dressed up for the wedding, wearing a beautiful gown."

  • Tie back: To fasten one's hair away from the face using a hairband or tie. Example: "She tied back her long hair to stay comfortable while working."

  • Clean up: To tidy and make oneself presentable. Example: "He cleaned up his appearance before the job interview."

  • Stand out: To be easily noticeable or distinct due to appearance. Example: "Her vibrant outfit made her stand out in the crowd."

  • Dress down: To wear casual or informal clothes. Example: "On weekends, he likes to dress down and wear comfortable clothes."

2. Animals:

  • Take in: To adopt or give a home to an animal. Example: "They took in a stray dog and provided it with a loving home."

  • Set free: To release an animal into the wild or give it freedom. Example: "The wildlife sanctuary set free the rehabilitated birds."

  • Tame down: To train or domesticate a wild animal. Example: "She spent months taming down the rescue parrot, and now it's friendly and well-behaved."

  • Look after: To take care of pets or animals. Example: "They look after their pet cat with love and attention."

  • Feed on: To eat or consume as food. Example: "Carnivorous animals feed on other animals for survival."

3. Art:

  • Showcase: To display or exhibit art or creations to the public. Example: "The gallery showcased a collection of contemporary art."

  • Bring out: To publish or release artistic works, like books or films. Example: "The author plans to bring out a new novel next year."

  • Draw up: To create a plan, design, or sketch. Example: "The artist drew up a concept for the mural on the wall."

  • Hang up: To put a painting or picture on the wall for display. Example: "They decided to hang up the family portrait in the living room."

  • Capture: To take a photograph or create an image. Example: "The photographer managed to capture the sunset's beauty in the photo."

4. Books & Reading:

  • Look up: To search for information in a book or dictionary. Example: "She looked up the meaning of a difficult word in the dictionary."

  • Browse through: To casually look at the content of a book, magazine, or website. Example: "He spent hours browsing through different novels at the bookstore."

  • Read up on: To study or research a particular topic by reading extensively. Example: "Before the exam, she read up on various historical events."

  • Pick up: To start reading a book or magazine casually. Example: "I picked up a mystery novel to read on the train journey."

  • Thumb through: To flip the pages of a book or magazine quickly. Example: "He thumbed through the travel magazine to find information about vacation spots."

5. Celebrations & Festivals:

  • Ring in: To celebrate the beginning of something, like the New Year. Example: "They rang in the New Year with fireworks and music."

  • Dress up: To wear special clothes or costumes for a celebration. Example: "People often dress up in traditional attire during cultural festivals."

  • Mark off: To celebrate or recognize a special occasion. Example: "They marked off their anniversary with a romantic dinner."

  • Wrap up: To conclude or finish a celebration or event. Example: "After the party, they wrapped up the decorations and cleaned the venue."

  • Toast to: To raise a glass and express good wishes for someone or something. Example: "During the wedding reception, they toasted to the newlyweds' happiness."

6. Clothes & Fashion:

  • Try on: To put on clothes to see how they fit or look. Example: "She tried on several dresses before choosing the perfect one for the party."

  • Dress down: To wear casual or informal clothes. Example: "On Fridays, the office allows employees to dress down and wear jeans."

  • Dress up: To wear formal or stylish clothes for a special occasion. Example: "They dressed up in elegant gowns and tuxedos for the award ceremony."

  • Tuck in: To put a shirt or top inside trousers or a skirt. Example: "He always tucks in his shirt to look more formal at work."

  • Hang up: To put clothes on hangers for storage. Example: "After doing laundry, she hung up her clothes in the closet."

7. Colours:

  • Brighten up: To add colors or make something more vibrant and cheerful. Example: "The colorful flowers brightened up the garden."

  • Blend in: To mix or combine harmoniously with the surroundings. Example: "The new paint color blended in well with the rest of the room."

  • Stand out: To be easily noticeable due to contrasting colors or unique appearance. Example: "Her red dress made her stand out in the sea of black suits."

  • Fade away: To lose color or brightness gradually. Example: "The old painting has faded away over time."

  • Light up: To illuminate or make something brighter. Example: "The fireworks lit up the night sky."

8. Dancing:

  • Step out: To start dancing or begin a dance routine. Example: "When the music started, they stepped out onto the dance floor."

  • Move to: To dance in rhythm or respond to the beat of the music. Example: "They moved to the music and danced all night."

  • Twirl around: To spin or rotate while dancing. Example: "She twirled around gracefully on the dance floor."

  • Dance off: To engage in a friendly competition to showcase dance skills. Example: "They had a dance-off at the party, entertaining everyone with their moves."

  • Dance to: To dance in a specific style or genre of music. Example: "She loves to dance to salsa and has taken lessons to improve her skills."

9. Family & Friends:

  • Look after: To take care of someone, especially family members or friends. Example: "He looked after his younger sister while their parents were away."

  • Grow up: To mature and develop from a child to an adult. Example: "They grew up together and have remained close friends."

  • Stay in touch: To maintain communication and keep in contact with someone. Example: "Even after moving to different cities, they stayed in touch through regular calls and messages."

  • Drop in: To visit someone casually and unexpectedly. Example: "She dropped in at her friend's house for a quick chat."

  • Patch up: To reconcile and repair a relationship or friendship after a disagreement. Example: "After a heated argument, they managed to patch up their differences."

10. Food & Cooking:

  • Cook up: To prepare a meal or dish. Example: "She cooked up a delicious dinner for her family."

  • Chop up: To cut food into smaller pieces. Example: "He chopped up the vegetables to prepare the salad."

  • Dig into: To start eating heartily. Example: "Everyone eagerly dug into the homemade pizza."

  • Whip up: To quickly and easily prepare a meal or dish. Example: "He whipped up a tasty dessert in just a few minutes."

  • Tuck in: To begin eating a meal heartily. Example: "After a long day, they were hungry and tuck in to enjoy the dinner."

11. Happiness & Laughing:

  • Cheer up: To make someone feel happier or less sad. Example: "Her friends tried to cheer her up with jokes and laughter."

  • Lighten up: To become less serious or strict and enjoy the moment. Example: "He needs to lighten up and have some fun with friends."

  • Crack up: To burst into laughter. Example: "The comedian's jokes cracked up the entire audience."

  • Burst out laughing: To suddenly start laughing loudly. Example: "When she heard the funny story, she burst out laughing."

  • Beam with joy: To have a big and happy smile on one's face. Example: "As she received the award, she beamed with joy."

12. Health:

  • Work out: To exercise or engage in physical activity for better health. Example: "She works out at the gym three times a week."

  • Take care of: To look after one's well-being and health. Example: "He takes care of himself by eating a balanced diet and getting enough rest."

  • Get over: To recover from an illness or injury. Example: "It took her a few weeks to get over the flu completely."

  • Break out: To experience a sudden skin problem like acne or rash. Example: "She broke out with hives after eating an allergic food."

  • Come down with: To become ill with a sickness. Example: "He came down with a cold and had to stay home."

13. Home:

  • Move in: To start living in a new home. Example: "They moved in together after getting married."

  • Set up: To arrange or furnish a new home. Example: "They set up the living room with new furniture."

  • Clear out: To remove or declutter unnecessary items from a home. Example: "They cleared out the attic to create more storage space."

  • Fix up: To repair or renovate parts of a home. Example: "They fixed up the old house before selling it."

  • Put away: To tidy and store items in their designated places. Example: "After dinner, they put away the dishes in the kitchen."

14. Hometown:

  • Grow up: To be raised and spend one's childhood in a particular town or city. Example: "He grew up in a small town in the countryside."

  • Move away: To relocate or leave one's hometown to live elsewhere. Example: "After college, she moved away to pursue her career in the city."

  • Go back to: To return to one's hometown after living elsewhere. Example: "They decided to go back to their hometown to be closer to family."

  • Hang out: To spend time in familiar places with friends in one's hometown. Example: "During vacations, they like to hang out at their favorite local spots."

  • Settle down: To establish a permanent home and community in one's hometown. Example: "After years of traveling, they decided to settle down in their hometown."

15. Housework:

  • Clean up: To tidy and remove clutter from the living space. Example: "They cleaned up the living room before guests arrived."

  • Wash up: To clean dishes and utensils after a meal. Example: "After dinner, they washed up and put the dishes away."

  • Tidy up: To organize and put things in order. Example: "She tidied up her room before starting her studies."

  • Take out: To remove or dispose of trash and waste. Example: "He took out the garbage after dinner."

  • Sweep up: To clean the floor using a broom or vacuum. Example: "She swept up the kitchen floor to remove dirt and crumbs."

16. Internet:

  • Log in: To enter one's username and password to access an online account. Example: "He logged in to his email to check for new messages."

  • Sign up: To register or create an account on a website or application. Example: "She signed up for an online course to improve her skills."

  • Scroll through: To browse content on a website or social media by moving the page up or down. Example: "He spent hours scrolling through his social media feeds."

  • Log out: To exit or end a session on an online account or website. Example: "Before leaving the computer, she always logs out of her accounts for security."

  • Browse around: To explore various websites or online content without a specific purpose. Example: "During leisure time, they like to browse around the internet for interesting articles."

17. Music:

  • Tune in: To listen to a radio station or watch a music channel on TV. Example: "They tuned in to their favorite radio show every evening."

  • Turn up: To increase the volume of music or sound. Example: "They turned up the music to dance and enjoy the party."

  • Sing along: To sing a song with the music or lyrics. Example: "Everyone sang along with their favorite song at the concert."

  • Play back: To listen to recorded music or a song again. Example: "She played back the song to learn the lyrics better."

  • Dance to: To move in rhythm with the music while dancing. Example: "The crowd danced to the beats of the lively music."

18. Name:

  • Come up with: To suggest or think of an idea, name, or solution. Example: "They came up with a unique name for their new business."

  • Take after: To resemble or inherit qualities from one's parents or ancestors, including a name. Example: "He takes after his father and even has the same name."

  • Name after: To give someone a name that is in honor of another person or a meaningful reason. Example: "They named their daughter after her grandmother, who was a beloved family member."

  • Call off: To cancel or revoke a previous name decision. Example: "They called off their plan to name the business after a famous person."

  • Settle on: To finally decide or choose a particular name. Example: "After much discussion, they settled on a name they both liked for their pet."

19. Nature:

  • Grow up: To develop and reach maturity, especially for plants. Example: "The flowers grew up and bloomed beautifully in the garden."

  • Blossom out: To bloom or open up, especially for flowers. Example: "In spring, the cherry trees blossom out, creating a stunning sight."

  • Lay out: To arrange and design a garden or park. Example: "They laid out a beautiful garden with various plants and a small pond."

  • Liven up: To add plants, flowers, or greenery to make an area more attractive and lively. Example: "They livened up their balcony with potted plants and flowers."

  • Look out for: To be watchful and attentive for something, like spotting birds or wildlife in nature. Example: "During the hike, they looked out for rare bird species."

20. Noise:

  • Drown out: To overpower or cover other sounds with a louder noise. Example: "The loud music drowned out the noise from the nearby construction site."

  • Tune out: To ignore or not pay attention to noise or distractions. Example: "To concentrate, she tuned out the noise from the busy street."

  • Block out: To eliminate or reduce noise by using earplugs or headphones. Example: "He blocked out the noise by listening to calming music with headphones."

  • Put up with: To tolerate or endure unpleasant noise or disruptions. Example: "Living near the airport, they had to put up with the noise from planes taking off and landing."

  • Turn down: To lower the volume of music or sound. Example: "They turned down the music to avoid disturbing the neighbors."

21. Planning & Organising:

  • Draw up: To create or design a plan or document. Example: "They drew up a detailed schedule for the project."

  • Sort out: To organize or arrange things systematically. Example: "She sorted out her paperwork to make it more manageable."

  • Lay out: To plan or arrange things systematically. Example: "Before starting the project, they laid out the steps to follow."

  • Carry out: To execute or complete a plan or task. Example: "They carried out the plan with precision and achieved success."

  • Set up: To establish or arrange something, like a meeting or event. Example: "They set up a meeting with the team to discuss the project."

22. Remembering:

  • Write down: To record information or notes in writing. Example: "To remember important details, she wrote them down in her notebook."

  • Keep track of: To monitor and maintain awareness of something, like dates or events. Example: "He uses a calendar to keep track of his appointments and deadlines."

  • Look back on: To reflect on past experiences or events. Example: "As she looked back on her childhood, she cherished the memories of family vacations."

  • Memorize: To learn something by heart so that it can be recalled from memory. Example: "He memorized the important formulas for the exam."

  • Jot down: To quickly write a brief note or reminder. Example: "She jotted down the key points from the lecture."

23. Security:

  • Lock up: To secure and fasten doors or windows with locks. Example: "Before leaving the house, they locked up to ensure security."

  • Keep safe: To protect or safeguard valuables or important documents. Example: "He keeps his passport in a safe place to keep it safe during travels."

  • Break in: To forcefully enter a building or property unlawfully. Example: "Their house was broken into, and valuable items were stolen."

  • Set off: To trigger an alarm or security system. Example: "The intruder accidentally set off the alarm while trying to break in."

  • Watch out for: To be vigilant and alert for potential threats or dangers. Example: "In the area with high crime rates, it's essential to watch out for any suspicious activity."

24. Shops & Shopping:

  • Shop around: To visit multiple stores or websites to compare prices or products. Example: "Before buying the new phone, she shopped around to find the best deal."

  • Stock up on: To buy a large quantity of something to ensure you have enough for future use. Example: "They stocked up on groceries before the storm arrived."

  • Try on: To put on clothes to check their fit and appearance. Example: "She tried on several dresses before choosing the one for the party."

  • Pick out: To choose or select something from a variety of options. Example: "They picked out a gift for their friend's birthday."

  • Go shopping for: To go out with the intention of buying specific items. Example: "They went shopping for new shoes and clothes."

25. Sky or Space:

  • Look up: To gaze or search for objects in the sky, like stars or planets. Example: "On clear nights, they love to look up at the stars."

  • Set off: To start a journey, especially in the context of space travel. Example: "The spacecraft set off on its mission to explore distant planets."

  • Gaze at: To look at something with wonder or admiration, like the night sky. Example: "They gazed at the beautiful sunset over the horizon."

  • Explore: To travel and discover new places or regions, including outer space. Example: "Astronauts explore space to learn more about the universe."

  • Stargaze: To observe stars and other celestial bodies in the night sky. Example: "During camping trips, they often stargaze by the bonfire."

26. Sport & Exercise:

  • Work out: To engage in physical exercise for better fitness. Example: "She works out at the gym to stay healthy and fit."

  • Train for: To prepare and practice for a specific sport or athletic event. Example: "He's training for the marathon, following a strict exercise regime."

  • Take up: To start doing a sport or physical activity. Example: "They took up tennis lessons to learn the sport."

  • Warm up: To do light exercise or stretching before engaging in more intense physical activity. Example: "Athletes warm up before a game to prevent injuries."

  • Cool down: To do gentle exercises after physical activity to gradually reduce the heart rate and prevent muscle stiffness. Example: "After the intense workout, they cooled down with stretches."

27. Study or Work:

  • Take on: To accept or assume responsibility or a new task. Example: "She took on the challenging project at work."

  • Catch up on: To get up to date with missed work, assignments, or learning. Example: "He needs to catch up on the lectures he missed last week."

  • Get through: To complete or finish a task or course of study. Example: "With determination, she got through the difficult exam."

  • Hand in: To submit assignments or work to a teacher or supervisor. Example: "They need to hand in their essays before the deadline."

  • Call off: To cancel a meeting, event, or appointment. Example: "Due to unforeseen circumstances, they had to call off the scheduled meeting."

28. Taking Photos:

  • Snap: To take a quick photograph. Example: "She snapped a picture of the beautiful sunset."

  • Capture: To take a photograph that successfully represents a moment or scene. Example: "The photographer captured the emotion of the winning goal."

  • Shoot: To take a series of photographs. Example: "During the photoshoot, they shot different poses and angles."

  • Zoom in/out: To adjust the camera lens to bring the subject closer or make it smaller. Example: "To focus on the details, he zoomed in on the flower."

  • Pose for: To position oneself or others for a photograph. Example: "They posed for a group photo at the party."

29. Travel & Holidays:

  • Set off: To begin a journey or trip. Example: "They set off on a road trip to explore the countryside."

  • Pack up: To put belongings into suitcases or bags for travel. Example: "Before leaving the hotel, they packed up their luggage."

  • Check in: To arrive at an airport or hotel and officially register as a guest. Example: "They checked in at the hotel reception upon arrival."

  • Tour around: To explore various places and sights during a trip. Example: "During the vacation, they toured around the city and visited famous landmarks."

  • Wind down: To relax and unwind after a busy day of sightseeing. Example: "In the evening, they wind down by the beach and watch the sunset."

30. Teachers, School & Subjects:

  • Look up to: To admire and respect someone, like a teacher or mentor. Example: "She looks up to her science teacher for inspiration."

  • Stand out: To be exceptional or prominent among others, like a memorable teacher. Example: "His creativity and dedication make him stand out as a remarkable teacher."

  • Take on: To accept responsibility for something, like challenging lessons or subjects. Example: "She took on the difficult math problem and solved it."

  • Brush up on: To review or refresh knowledge on a particular subject. Example: "Before the exam, they brushed up on their history facts."

  • Participate in: To take part in activities or events, like sports or extracurriculars. Example: "They actively participate in the school's drama club."

31. Weekends & Free Time:

  • Hang out: To spend leisure time with friends or family. Example: "On weekends, they like to hang out at the park."

  • Chill out: To relax and take it easy during free time. Example: "After a long week, they chill out by watching movies at home."

  • Kick back: To relax and unwind, often with feet up. Example: "He kicked back on the couch and read a book."

  • Make the most of: To take full advantage of free time or an opportunity. Example: "During weekends, they make the most of their time by exploring new places."

  • Catch up with: To spend time with someone you haven't seen in a while. Example: "They caught up with old friends over coffee."

32. Work or Study:

  • Carry out: To execute or complete a task or project. Example: "They carried out the research for their thesis."

  • Break down: To divide a complex task or topic into smaller and more manageable parts. Example: "He broke down the project into different phases."

  • Get ahead: To progress and make significant advancements in work or studies. Example: "By staying focused, he managed to get ahead in his career."

  • Fall behind: To lag or not keep up with the pace of work or studies. Example: "Due to illness, she fell behind in her coursework."

  • Work on: To dedicate time and effort to improve skills or complete a task. Example: "She's working on improving her presentation skills for the upcoming seminar."


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