How to Say “Wet” in Japanese: A Comprehensive Guide

When learning a new language, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with common words and expressions. In this guide, we’ll delve into various ways to say “wet” in Japanese. Whether you’re looking for a formal or informal term, we’ve got you covered. So, let’s explore different words and phrases to express this idea!

Formal Expressions

When it comes to formal situations, it’s crucial to use polite language. Here are some formal terms you can use to convey the sense of “wet” in Japanese:

  1. Shimeite: This formal term is often used for “wet.” It is commonly employed in formal settings when discussing damp objects, surfaces, or clothes. For example, you could say, “Kono tōru wa shimeite imasu” – “This towel is wet.”
  2. Nurete imasu: Another formal expression for “wet” in Japanese, this phrase can be used to describe objects, such as clothes or paper, that are soaked or drenched. For instance, “Shinpuru na nōto ga nurete imasu” – “The notebook is wet.”
  3. Bishonure: This is a more formal term commonly used in written language. It describes something that is thoroughly wet. For instance, you could say, “Ima, mado no soto wa bishonure desu” – “The outside of the window is wet.”

Informal Expressions

In casual conversations or informal situations, you can use more relaxed and simplified expressions to convey the idea of “wet.” Here are some common informal terms:

  1. Mizete: This is a straightforward and commonly-used word for “wet” in everyday conversation. For example, you could say, “Kono fuku wa mizete iru yo” – “These clothes are wet.”
  2. Shibotte iru: This informal expression can be used when something is damp or moist. It’s versatile and can describe anything from clothes to surfaces. For example, “Hataraku mae ni, tebukuro o shibotte iru” – “I’m wetting my gloves before working.”
  3. Nureru: This is a frequently-used, straightforward term to describe something being wet. It is often used when talking about getting wet in the rain or wetting clothes accidentally. For example, “Ame no naka de nureru noga kirai” – “I don’t like getting wet in the rain.”

Regional Variations

Japan is a diverse country with regional dialects that can vary greatly. While the terms mentioned above are widely understood, it’s interesting to note different variations from various regions of Japan:

Kansai Dialect: In the Kansai region, some people may use the term “shikke” instead of “shimeite” to indicate something is wet. For example, “Kono tawaru wa shikke dekita” – “This towel got wet.”

Remember, regional variations are not necessary to learn and understand basic Japanese. However, being aware of them can enhance your cultural understanding.

Tips for Using “Wet” in Japanese

To ensure you use these words and expressions correctly, here are a few valuable tips:

  • Context Matters: Always consider the context in which you’re using the term “wet” in Japanese. The appropriate word choice may vary based on the situation.
  • Pay Attention to Politeness: Be mindful of the formality level required in a given situation. Use formal expressions when speaking to superiors, strangers, or in formal settings.
  • Listen and Observe: Pay attention to how native Japanese speakers use these words in various conversations. It will help you become more fluent and comfortable.
  • Practice Speaking: The more you practice incorporating these words into conversations and language exercises, the more confident you will become.
  • Use a Japanese Dictionary: Refer to reliable online dictionaries or language resources to expand your vocabulary and further explore different ways to say “wet” in Japanese.


In conclusion, there are several ways to express “wet” in Japanese, depending on the context and formality level. This guide has covered formal and informal expressions, as well as regional variations. Remember, context and politeness are key factors when choosing the appropriate term. By following the tips provided and practicing these expressions, you’ll develop a solid foundation to accurately convey the concept of “wet” in Japanese. Enjoy your language-learning journey!

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Written by Kimberley Lily

Konnichiwa! I'm Kimberley, your go-to guide for everything Japanese language related. With a passion for linguistics and love for "nihongo", my heart races as I explore the cultural depth behind every character and phrase. Whether it's the Japanese expression for "alchemy" or deciphering how to formally address a "college student", I've got you covered. Away from words and kanji, you'll find me sampling matcha dessert, drowning in Ghibli films, or nurturing my amateur archery skills. My mission? To bridge the linguistic gap, one beautifully constructed Japanese word at a time. Let's embark on this language journey together!

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