As a Persian speaker, we do use "In fact" and "Actually" in the spoken and written language. And it is quite formal. I think when we want to add more details to something, or say something in another way (as it is in other words, however we have this phrase too), or to be more clear and factual and direct we use it.

But as I used it in some English sentences, I am told that is informal! OK, then what are the formal ways for it?.

For example these are some literal translation of the phrase usage in my language and I do feel a need for a formal equivalent phrase (for "in fact", and "actually") in English.

In this paper we do this..., In fact we simulate the way a human user do this.

We should help each other, in fact it is the sign of our humanity.

A pregnant woman shouldn't smoke, in fact, smoking pose hazards for the infant.

2 Answers 2


Your three examples look almost fine to me. I'll tell you first that "in fact" certainly doesn't sound informal to me. I have used and do use "in fact" in papers for class quite often to add exrta information of emphasis.

HOWEVER, the mistake that you're making here is that you're using commas. I don't think you'll ever find "in fact" not at the beginning of a sentence. There are rare instances where it can appear within a sentence, but usually, the use looks like this:

Running is very good for your health. In fact, 9 out of 10 doctors in the US recommend running daily to improve your health.

So, now to improve your three examples:

In this paper we do this.... In fact**,** we simulate the way a human user do this.

We should help each other**.** In fact, this is the sign of our humanity.

A pregnant woman shouldn't smoke**.** In fact, smoking pose***s*** hazards for the infant.

(Sidenotes for you on grammar: "smoking" is a single subject, so the verb should be conjugated as poses in the third example. "In fact" is basically always followed a comma.)

  • Then you say it is quite formal and common for native speakers? because I don't see much equivalent phrases for it, if you know please let me know
    – Ahmad
    Jul 9, 2015 at 15:26
  • 1
    There are in fact many places where "in fact" occurs at other than the beginning of a sentence. Actually, no matter where it pops up, "in fact" sounds a bit less than formal to me.
    – Ast Pace
    Jul 9, 2015 at 22:40

There is a case to be made for 'in fact' to be formal and informal. My view is that formal use would be as the start of a sentance. informal use, such as in speach, would be to drop 'in fact' within a sentance to add emphasise. So much like a lot of English it is the use that determines if it is formal or informal.

  • Please do not provide opinions as answers, but referenced facts. This is the purpose of this site.
    – fev
    Jul 24, 2021 at 15:20

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .