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Someone's got some hair blocking his eyes, how to say to remove it from his face?

  1. Brush away the hair.
  2. Put away the hair.
  3. Remove the hair.
  4. Hand-brush away the hair.
  5. ?
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  • 3
    If you are telling someone to do the action, I would use "Brush the hair out of your eyes."
    – Casey
    Aug 27, 2016 at 18:53

2 Answers 2

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Of your options, I'd go with #1 ("brush away the hair"). To put away the hair does not make sense in this context, and removing it implies you're cutting it off. Hand-brush away just sounds awkward.

That said, aside is probably a better suited adverb for this meaning.

aside (adv.): 1. to one side; out of the way.

The only other note is that "the hair" feels slightly awkward and you would be more likely to specify it was "his hair" without any other context. If you were already talking about it, I suppose, then you may say "the hair" but I still think I'd be more likely to just replace it with a pronoun altogether ("he brushed it aside").

He brushed his hair aside.


As was mentioned in comments, in a command (rather than a narrative) it's more natural to just say "brush the hair out of your eyes." You can also be more forceful and say "get the hair out of your [eyes/face]" but this also can sound like frustration or disdain for the person having his hair in his face to begin with. This is likely how a parent would say it to a child.

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It is a good question you have Joe Kim. I often use the action in my prose and thought you might consider using it in this context. It is a good combination of working words and glue words, but not overused and it explains the details to your readers.

"He brushed aside tendrils of hair that fluttered against his brow."

Have fun.

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  • You have left out an article in your example.
    – mdewey
    Dec 5, 2022 at 13:36
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