Let's say you can't open a strawberry jam's jar, and you are describing it this way:

The strawberry jam is sealed.


The strawberry jam is sealed off.

Which of them is expressed correctly?

1 Answer 1


I would be more inclined to use:

The strawberry jam is sealed tight.

(Grammatically, one might be inclined to use adverb tightly, but the word tight can be used in this context as well. See this ELL question for more on that.)

It might also be better to describe the lid rather than the jam:

This lid is too tight.

I don't think sealed off is the right expression to use. When I hear that expression, I think of the police sealing off a crime scene, or a work crew sealing off an area with a dangerous leak. Cambridge defines seal (something) off as:

seal off (phrasal verb) to prevent people from entering an area or building, often because it is dangerous: Two more bombs have been discovered since the police sealed off the area.

  • Thx. Can I say ''the strawberry jam's lid is tightly sealed'' or sealed tightly only?
    – John Arvin
    Commented Oct 4, 2018 at 11:43
  • 1
    Basically agree. Tight is not needed really. It can be used. But let's not forget to seal off for anything where there is a flow of liquid or other substance. They sealed off the pipes in the basement after the flood. seal off=stop a flow, even of people. Also, in every day language, we do say: the jam is sealed to mean the jar....
    – Lambie
    Commented Oct 4, 2018 at 13:36
  • 1
    @Lambie - I concur on all the points you've made. Most of the suggestions in my answer weren't meant to be corrections, but thanks for clarifying.
    – J.R.
    Commented Oct 4, 2018 at 14:20

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