Seduced by wrong word? Sensuous vs. sensual

What’s the difference between an enjoyable afternoon of wine tasting and a night of artful seduction over wine? One is “sensuous” and the other is “sensual.”

“Sensuous” means to appeal to the senses or to have strong sensory appeal, as in The Klingon found the Grapok sauce sensuous.

“Sensual” pertains to fleshly or sexual appeal, as in The Klingon warrior found B’etor’s ample bosom quite sensual.


My name is Rob Bignell. I’m an affordable, professional editor who runs Inventing Reality Editing Service, which meets the manuscript needs of writers both new and published. I also offer a variety of self-publishing services. During the past decade, I’ve helped more than 300 novelists and nonfiction authors obtain their publishing dreams at reasonable prices. I’m also the author of the 7 Minutes a Day… writing guidebooks, four nonfiction hiking guidebook series, and the literary novel Windmill. Several of my short stories in the literary and science fiction genres also have been published.