Idioms and expressions in English with “SUIT”

Idioms and expressions in English with "SUIT"

Have you ever worn your “birthday suit” to the bar? If you don’t know what that means, this lesson is well-suited for you! Did you know that “suit” can be a noun, an adjective, and a verb? Watch, and you will learn how the word “suit” is used in business and in your personal life. At the end of the video, there is a quiz for you to see if you understood the material. So suit up, and get ready to learn some new vocabulary! Or don’t… Suit yourself!


Joker, you’ve never been anything but an empty suit. If you ever come to Gotham again, I’ll be all over you like a cheap suit.

Not my best Batman, but… Hi, welcome to engVid. I’m James, and this is Mr. E. Today’s lesson is on the word “suit”. I’m wearing the bat suit, and I’m sure you’ve heard of Batman. And if you haven’t, when you’re done this, go watch the Batman movie and then come back, and this will be funny. All right? Anyway, welcome to engVid. James. Mr. E, and Mr. E. Oh. “Censored”, this means you’re not allowed to look or you can’t see it; there’s something wrong. So, why don’t we talk about why I’m wearing a bat suit, why E is wearing a suit, and why he’s censored over here? Let’s go to the board. [Laughs] Okay, anyway.

So, “suit” is what we’re working with today. “Suit” is a word that could be either a verb or a noun in English, and we usually use it with a lot of expressions. So, today, we’re going to work on the expressions that we use it for.

Let’s start with the first one. I’ve divided the board into business and personal, or should I say: “Personal and business”, because I’m awake, and we’re going to find out how “suit” is used in the business world and in your personal life, so you can use this word outside, you know, with your friends, joking around, having fun or actually when you go to work. Ready? Let’s go to the board.

“Birthday suit”, you’re naked, baby – no clothes whatsoever. And if you look very carefully, E is censored, because he’s in his birthday suit. He has no clothing. He looks a little too happy, right? If you take a look, a little too happy for my liking.

Now, what about him wearing a suit here? We’ve got “birthday suit”, to “suit up”. There’s a program in North America called How I Met Your Mother, and there’s a guy called Barney. Barney’s hilarious. And whenever he wants to go meet women… He’s got a friend. I forget his name. He always goes: “Let’s suit up”, and they go on and they put suits. That’s a suit and a tie, and they dress up. And as you can see here, Mr. E is suited up. He has put on his shirt and his tie. He wants to look good. It means to look good and attractive.

Another meaning for “suit up” is this: in the military, they might say: “Suit up, boys!” It means: get your weapons, get ready for battle or for action. Sometimes they say in sports: “Suit up!” Get your uniform on. Get ready for action. So you could say it’s for putting on a suit, or: put on clothes for action, because you’re ready to do something; military, sports, any kind of activity. First two.

What’s the other one? Well, this isn’t a monkey suit, but it kind of feels like one right now. A “monkey suit” is the informal word for tuxedo. Tuxedo, I’m sure you’ve seen it, when people go and get married, they wear a fancy, special suit because on this suit they have a bowtie. It’s a tie that looks like this, usually used for weddings and formal occasions; big parties. Yeah? So, they call it a monkey suit because… I’ll explain. Even though it’s formal clothing, it’s like a uniform because all the men wear the same thing. They will usually wear a white shirt with a black jacket, a cummerbund, which is this thing they put around their waist, here. Okay? And black pants and black shoes. And all the men wear it, so that’s why they call it a monkey suit, because they’re all doing the same thing. But we also sometimes call uniforms monkey suits. If someone works as a cleaner, they might say: “This monkey suit”, because it’s not… I’m not… I don’t feel human; I feel like one of a group, just a uniform body of people. Okay? “Uniform” meaning the same.

“Bathing suit”. If you wear a bathing suit, it’s not when you take a bath. I know, you think shower, you think bath. A bathing suit is something different. When you go swimming, that’s when you wear your bathing suit. So when you go to the ocean and you’re out there, you’re not in your birthday suit – no, you can’t go naked. But you can put on a little thing, it looks like little underwear. And some girls, their bathing suit is a “bikini”, that’s a two-piece bathing suit, or it can be a one-piece bathing suit. All right?