It's easy to say that you outgrew your clothes, but what's the word to indicate the opposite?

I lost so much weight that I _ _ _ _ _ my belt!

  • 1
    the antonym to grow is shrink, but I do not see an antonym to the idiom outgrow
    – mplungjan
    May 6, 2013 at 14:49
  • 1
    "had to shorten"
    – Jim
    May 6, 2013 at 14:59
  • 1
    had to poke new holes in May 6, 2013 at 15:11
  • 4
    You mean you can't say He's lost so much weight lately that he ingrew his trousers? May 6, 2013 at 16:57
  • 2
    I never thought about it until now but "outgrow" is a strange word in that (to me), it implies that my growing outpaced the growing of the article of clothing. What sense does that make? No wonder there is no exact antonym! ;-) May 6, 2013 at 17:38

2 Answers 2


There is no single word antonym in that situation (at least, none I am aware of).

The idiomatic phrase to use would be:

I lost so much weight that I had to tighten my belt!

or for another article of clothing, perhaps:

I lost so much weight that I had to take in my pants.


I don't think outgrew can be used with belt, i.e. I outgrew my belt.

I think what you are looking for is:

I lost so much weight that I had to tighten my belt.

and to explain the original situation:

I added so much weight that I had to loosen my belt.

  • 2
    It is possible to grow so much that the belt is actually too short (and consequently simply loosening would no longer be enough). Although outgrow is not usually applied to belts, it's exactly the same as a baby outgrowing his romper suit.
    – Andrew Leach
    May 7, 2013 at 6:48

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