Difference Between Do And Make

Do is sometimes confused with make.

When to use do

To talk about indefinite activities

We use do (and not make) when we do not say exactly what we are doing. For example, we use do with words like something, anything, nothing, what, thing and everything.

  • I like doing nothing. (NOT I like making nothing.)
  • I am going to do something. (NOT I am going to make something.)
  • What shall we do now? (NOT What shall we make now?)

To talk about work and jobs

We use do to talk about work and jobs.

  • Have you got any work to do? (NOT Have you got any work to make?)
  • Do your homework. (NOT Make your homework.)
  • I will do the ironing. (NOT I will make the ironing.)

When to use make

Make is often used to talk about constructing, creating, building etc.

  • Who made this cake?
  • I am going to make a boat.

Common fixed expressions with do

Do good

Do harm

Do business

Do one’s best

Do a favour

Do sport

Do exercise

Do one’s hair

Do one’s teeth

Do one’s duty

Do 70mph

Common fixed expressions with make

Make a journey

Make an offer

Make arrangements

Make a suggestion

Make a plan

Make a decision

Make an attempt

Make an effort

Make an excuse

Make an exception

Make a mistake

Make a noise

Make a phone call

Make money

Make a profit

Make a fortune

Make love

Make progress

Make war

Make peace

Make a bed

Make a fire

Make a fuss

Make an enquiry

Make a comment

Make a fool of oneself

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Manjusha Nambiar

I am the founder and editor of http://www.perfectyourenglish.com, http://www.ielts-practice.org, and http://ncertguides.com

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