Ladies vs. Women

The main difference between Woman and lady is that Woman generic word for a female human being while lady a woman of refined behavior and speech. According to these simple definitions, a lady is a woman, but not all women are ladies.

Definition of lady

The word lady is a term of respect for a girl or woman, the equivalent of gentleman. Once used to describe only women of a high social class or status, the female equivalent of lord, now it may refer to any adult woman. Informal use of this word is sometimes euphemistic (“lady of the night” for a prostitute) or, in American slang, condescending (equivalent to “mister” or “man”).

“Lady” is also a formal title in the United Kingdom. “Lady” is used before the family name of a woman with a title of nobility or honorary title suo jure (in her own right), or the wife of a lord, a baronet, Scottish feudal baron, laird, or a knight, and also before the first name of the daughter of a duke, marquess, or earl.

Ladies is the plural of lady and is used to show respect for a woman. It is basically used to address those women who have a high status or reputation in society are who belong to a high-class family. Now, this term is widely used to address any respectable adult woman. Moreover, the discrimination between lower and middle-class women had been finished in European and American states. Now the term lady equally used to respect any woman. This word also used as a complement for females with gentlemen in the greetings as “ladies and gentlemen”.

You can use a lady as a polite way of referring to a woman, especially if the woman is present.


  • Her mother was always telling her to act like a lady.
  • He bumped into some lady walking to the bus stop.
  • He helped a little old lady cross the street.

Be Careful! It is almost always better to refer to someone as an old lady or an elderly lady, rather than an `old woman’.

  • I helped an old lady to carry her shopping.
  • She is an elderly lady living on her own.
  • If you are addressing a group of women, you call them ladies, not `women’.
  • Ladies, could I have your attention, please?
  • Good evening, ladies and gentlemen.

Definition of  Women

A woman is an adult female human. Prior to adulthood, a female human is referred to as a girl (a female child or adolescent). The plural women is sometimes used in certain phrases such as “women’s rights” to denote female humans regardless of age.

Typically, women have two X chromosomes and are capable of pregnancy and giving birth from puberty until menopause. Female anatomy, as distinguished from male anatomy, includes the fallopian tubes, ovaries, uterus, vulva, Skene’s glands, and Bartholin’s glands. The adult female pelvis is wider, the hips broader, and the breasts larger than that of adult males. Women have significantly less facial and other body hair, have a higher body fat composition, and are on average shorter and less muscular than men.

You usually refer to an adult female person as a woman. A woman is sometimes used in front of other nouns. Women are the plural of woman and are specially reserved for old age or adult female human. It is also used as a collective noun while referring to whole female humans like women’s rights or women’s NGO. We mostly used this term for every adult or old age female human but in fact, it is used for that female who has passed through womanhood. Womanhood means that she has passed through the period of childhood and teenage and now is at the adult age of 18 or more.


  • His mother was a tall, dark-haired woman.
  • There were men and women working in the fields.

Key Differences

  1. The word women are used generally to represents all age of female human while ladies are used for specific purposes.
  2. The word lady is still used as a complimentary word for example while calling and addressing like “excuse me lady” and “ladies and gentlemen” respectively while women word is not developed for the purpose of respect.
  3. Lady is a more polite word than women. That’s why for the president’s wife, the words first lady are used to addressing.
  4. There are distinctions between games in Olympics both for ladies and girls. For example, ladies can take part in alpine skiing, cross country, figure skating, freestyle skiing, short track speed skating, ski jumping, snowboard,, and speed skating sports in Olympics. While there are limited spots are available for women in Olympics like biathlon, curling, ice hockey, luge, and skeleton.


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