Can you plz tell me the difference between even up and even out with some examples?

And which one do you think would be better to use for this situation?

ex) I made two cocktails at the same time and they have different portions. Do I have to say 'I should even them up or I should even them out'?

1 Answer 1


even out usually means to make something more even, flat or fair.

ex. She will get more money up front, but you will get more later, and it will even out in the end. The pavers worked all day to even out the road

even up has a very similar meaning, but implies a more active role, or demonstrates that two things have come to the same level.

ex. After the poker game, the players cashed in their chips to even up.

After I poured the drinks, I saw that one cup was half-filled, so I used water to even them up.

  • 1
    Yes, but I would say that in reference to physical things like drinks and paths "even up" tends to mean "add material to the smaller or lower to bring it up to the level of the larger" as in your last example whereas "even out" means "move material from the higher or larger to the other to make them the same". In other words "even up" means "augment the deficient" but "even up" means redistribute without adding more.
    – BoldBen
    Commented Jul 19, 2020 at 10:07

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