25

What adjective would be used to describe an attitude where one is not too demanding about something (like the food they eat, the clothes they wear, etc.).

I'm looking for a word that sounds fairly informal or colloquial.

  • 2
  • 10
    Not posting as an answer because you are specifically looking for another word and there are several valid answers here, but I would say that in my AmE experience simply "I'm not picky"/"(S)he's not picky" seems to be a very common informal/colloquial phrasing. – Bryan Krause May 30 '18 at 17:34
  • 1
    Can't share as an actual answer, but how about "Indifferent"?. Meaning unconcerned regarding the outcome. any of the available options are fine. I use it routinely myself when a group of friends are deciding where to go for food and ask for my opinion "Eh, I'm pretty indifferent, they're all good" – Ruadhan2300 May 31 '18 at 10:08
  • 1
    For what it's worth, one problem you'll run into with this topic is that we use different words to talk about ourselves and others. "I'm easy/open/game for..." versus "He's not demanding/fussy/particular about..." In general, we frame ourselves in terms of attitude and others in terms of how much of a pain they're being. – lly May 31 '18 at 13:38
  • 1
    You should provide an example sentence or sentences with a blank where you want the adjective to go. – CJ Dennis May 31 '18 at 23:33

12 Answers 12

29

I might use easygoing, which is synonymous with undemanding. M-W lists it as any antonym of fussy, which can be applied to tastes in food or clothes.

One definition that fits this context is:

easygoing (adj) relaxed and informal in attitude or standards

An example sentence might be:

Diane is really picky about what she eats, but her sister Jill is much more easygoing.

An idiom that might work is go with the flow, which Macmillan defines as:

go with the flow (phrase) do what seems like the easiest thing in a particular situation

This may not a precise fit, but it could work depending on what you were trying to convey:

Every time we go to the mall, Diane is really picky about clothes, but Jill just goes with the flow. She'll pretty much agree to anything we suggest.

The phrase go with the flow suggests a calm and accepting attitude.

  • 2
    If you mean "picky" as in willfully selective (i.e. not wanting to eat something rather than genuinely not liking it), then "open [to something]" can also be a workable antonym. Picky can be used in a few different cases (related as to how/why a certain option is discarded), which influences the correct antonym. This is similar to how the antonym of "man" can change with a different context: woman (gender), boy (maturity), mouse (courage), animal (civility), machine (organic/artificial) – Flater May 31 '18 at 7:38
  • More idiomatic to me would be "adventurous", especially with regard to food. – Alex Reinking May 31 '18 at 22:15
  • @AlexR - I agree; I think "adventurous" would be an excellent word to use, especially when one is trying a food they have never eaten before. – J.R. May 31 '18 at 22:35
  • @J.R. - I can't add an answer of my own, but feel free to add it to yours if you like it :) – Alex Reinking May 31 '18 at 23:09
  • "Go with the flow" means you are happy to do what everybody else is doing. That can mean someone is agreeable and undemanding in general, but I don't see how that could apply to clothing. Would that mean wearing what other people want? Or wearing what everybody else is wearing? – Astralbee Jun 1 '18 at 6:45
29

We can use flexible, which is often used casually.

Formally, this is defined as: (of a person) ready and able to change so as to adapt to different circumstances.

In context:
- "I'm hungry, let's eat! Any preferences?"
- "Oh anything's fine, I'm flexible."

  • 1
    Flexible is by no means the opposite of picky, not even in your example, especially because one can be picky and flexible at the same time (the former doesn't mutually exclude the latter). – gented May 31 '18 at 13:58
  • @gented - Agreed. "Flexible", which can mean you're open to options in this case, typically is still couched in the fact that the flexible person is picky, but there is a little leeway for other options. You can only be so flexible before you flex too far and "break". – BruceWayne May 31 '18 at 21:08
15

I would suggest:

  • undemanding (if speaking about food or requirements)
  • casual (about clothing or attitude in general)

In colloquial speech (bear in mind I am a native British English speaker. My colloquialisms may not be quite the same in American English) you may hear:

"I'm easy"

in response to a question about tastes, likes, dislikes. This conveys a casual attitude, that you have no specific likes or dislikes.

Or:

"I'm not fussy" (informal)
"I'm not particular" (slightly more formal)

  • 2
    "I'm easy" works well in the US, too. It's commonly heard and general-purpose enough to work in these situations. – J.R. May 30 '18 at 13:59
  • 5
    Be careful about using "I'm easy" without supplying immediate context, since it can imply specifically "I am the opposite of picky when it comes to sexual partners." – Bryan Krause May 30 '18 at 17:31
  • 2
    Errr... sure, with no context. If I asked someone "How do you like your eggs?" and they responded with "I'm easy." I'd take it to mean "whatever way you cook them", not "hey lets smash"... – Adonalsium May 30 '18 at 20:29
  • 2
    @Adonalsium I personally wouldn't understand the intended meaning in that context either (this thread is the first I've heard of this meaning to be honest) and would assume you wanted your eggs over easy. – Sparksbet May 31 '18 at 7:03
  • 2
    @user46359 I mean, I'm hardly gonna claim "easy" is never used as described in this answer, but I would be very hesitant to use it like that -- if a native speaker in her 20s is unfamiliar with using "easy" to mean "not picky", it might go over quite a few other people's heads, and I think it's best to generally tread carefully when it comes to anything with potential sexual connotations (after all, think of the potential confusion with a statement like "we should invite her to dinner; she's easy.") – Sparksbet May 31 '18 at 7:08
7

If asked for a general preference, e.g.

What type of X do you like?

the most natural responses to my ears are:

I'm not fussy.

I'm not picky.

I'm easy. (adjective, sense 6)

Although easy can have a sexual connotation, most of the time it won't. You'll get a knowing glance because of the double entendre, but people won't accidentally misunderstand.

If directly asked for a choice, e.g.

What type of X do you want?

other possible responses are:

I don't mind. (verb, sense 3)

I'm not bothered.

I'm not fussed.

6

I would suggest unfussy. It was my immediate reaction when I saw the question title.

  • 5
    I think "not fussy" would sound more natural – Melkor May 30 '18 at 18:35
  • 2
    @Melkor Right? I was even starting to say that 'unfussy' would work better with things than people... but even things are 'not fussy' rather than 'unfussy'. I suppose it might work in a parallel structure with some other un- prefixed adjectives, though. – lly May 31 '18 at 13:50
6

Easy, easygoing, and game are all good choices and already mentioned.

Since no one posted it yet, though, I'll also throw out laid back or laid-back. The OED has it in the figurative sense of 'relaxed' since at least 1974:

It's all cheerfully grotty and relaxed in the usual laid-back Montreal style.

Wiktionary is unsourced but claims it goes back to the '50s.

Really, any synonym for 'relaxed' is going to work here with a little context. Some fairly popular recent slang would be chill or down for whatever. The later can have sexual connotations as a general description, but works just fine in response to a focused question.

Whaddya wanna eat?

Man, I'm down for whatever.

3

A less popular but still sometimes used word is catholic (lower case "c"):

2 : comprehensive, universal; especially : broad in sympathies, tastes, or interests - a catholic taste in music

Merriam Webster

  • 2
    That was new to me. Interesting find. I knew Catholics had more fun! – Peter A. Schneider May 30 '18 at 22:05
  • 3
    Much less popular and not informal at all. This sense of catholic has to reach all the way around the Roman church to the original Greek sense of 'general', 'universal', 'all-encompassing'. It could definitely work in some tightly honed fiction like Nabokov, though. – lly May 31 '18 at 13:47
  • People are likely to misinterpret this word as meaning more fussy, not less, based on common beliefs/stereotypes about religious people and especially Catholics. – Sman789 May 31 '18 at 14:11
  • @lly I don't know, I've never read Nabokov and I've heard and read this word used in this sense many times over the course of my life. An ngram search suggests this word has fallen out of favor and is much less common than "picky" is today. Which I think explains why this word sprang to my mind but seems unusual to others: a large portion of my reading has been science fiction from the 30s - the 50s, when the word was more popular than it is today. – Todd Wilcox May 31 '18 at 14:40
  • Even the Creed of the (protestant) Church of England contains the line "... holy, catholic, and apostolic church" so it has had meaning outside of one specific Church for some time. – Alchymist May 31 '18 at 15:16
3

Related to Martin Bonner's and Astralbee's answers, the best single-word antonym I can think of is unparticular:

adjective: Not particular; especially not exacting, fastidious, or fussy.

3

Relaxed is another good word: "Don't worry, she's pretty relaxed about food." Merriam-Webster defines it as "easy of manner" which seems to fit your request.

"Relaxed" also comes up in a search for a translation of "fünfe gerade sein lassen" (literally "let five be even", i.e. don't insist on formalities, don't be fussy, be flexible — the German answer to your question).

2

A word that's very similar in meaning to the adjective picky would be finicky. The opposite of finicky then would be unfinicky which is defined simply as:

not finicky

You could also consider the word unfastidious which, as with unfinicky, is simply the opposite of fastidious:

not fastidious: not extremely or excessively careful, selective, difficult to please, etc.

In all honesty though, you would probably be better off sticking to not finicky and not fastidious rather than the contrived-sounding unfinicky and unfastidious:

He's not finicky about the food he eats. So, when it comes to food, he's a person that's not very hard to please.

She's not very fastidious about the clothes she wears. In fact, she buys most of her clothes in second-hand stores.

0

It may not be a special word, but in my experience, the most common antonym for picky is not picky.

"Where would you like to eat dinner" "Oh anywhere is fine, I'm not picky."

"It's easy taking my daughter clothes shopping, she's not picky about brands."

"Did you see the guy Sheila was out with last week? Looks like someone is not very picky..."

  • The expression "not picky" was already suggested by @CJ Dennis – Mari-Lou A Jun 1 '18 at 19:23
  • Yeah, that's the problem with having six or seven suggestions in a single answer, it's hard to tell what's been posted before, and impossible to vote for just one. Oh well, as a mere human, I am subject to such failings. – barbecue Jun 1 '18 at 21:23
-3

I know only two one-word words, but both are rather formal:

  • Unpretentious
  • Modest

You could also say "not too picky" or "not too demanding".

If about food, you could say "hearty eater".

  • 2
    I'm not native English speaker, but those two words looks formal and more applicable to clothes than to food, don't they? What about "unfussy"? (I've found that one in the link provided by Tetsujin) – RubioRic May 30 '18 at 10:20
  • 2
    @RubioRic Neither of those could be applied to taste in food, and "unfussy" is what I was about to suggest! – Martin Bonner May 30 '18 at 14:53

protected by J.R. May 30 '18 at 16:55

Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site (the association bonus does not count).

Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead?

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.