Valuable vs Invaluable: Difference and Comparison

If I asked you what is the most valuable thing to you? Many of you might mention an expensive item that you own or might just mention something that has a definite worth.

But what about your friends and family and all those people who are dearest to you in some way or the other? Something that you can’t exactly give the estimate the worth of. We can make them invaluable.

But how is invaluable different from valuable when they both show some importance to us? Though they are very similar even, they have their differences.

Key Takeaways

  1. “Valuable” describes something with high monetary or sentimental worth, due to its rarity, quality, or usefulness.
  2. “Invaluable” refers to something priceless or irreplaceable, possessing a value that cannot be accurately quantified or measured.
  3. Both “valuable” and “invaluable” describe objects or qualities of high worth, but “valuable” implies a measurable value, while “invaluable” suggests an immeasurable or incalculable value.

Valuable vs Invaluable

Valuable refers to the importance of anything, a person, place, animal, etc. Valuable things can have emotions behind them or memories connected to them. Invaluable refers to something that is not affecting anything with its presence or absence. It is something that doesn’t have any value.

Valuable vs Invaluable

Valuable refers to everything that has value. Something which can be bought/sold/trade-in terms of money or something.

In terms of psychology, valuable is anything that doesn’t have an emotion behind it and just because it doesn’t have any emotion or isn’t related to any personal life events, it is considered valuable.

Invaluable refers to everything that has value in someone’s life. Something which can not be bought/sold/trade-in terms of money or something.

In terms of psychology, invaluable is anything that has an emotion behind it, and just because it has an emotion or is related to one’s personal life events, is considered invaluable.

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Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonValuableInvaluable
Definitionsomething that has a materialistic worth.something that has inestimable worth.
UsageUse for things to measure their value.Use for things to show the emotion behind it.
SynonymsTreasure, prizedindispensable
Parts of speechNoun and AdjectiveAdjective
Examples“My watch is very valuable”“the watch gifted by my mother to me is invaluable”

What is Valuable?

Everything of value is considered valuable. In monetary terms, it can be bought, sold, or exchanged. The term “valuable” is used for things to measure their value or what they are worthy of.

The value of worth can be anything, such as money or trade of any other valuable item. This system of trading one valuable item in terms of other valuable items is also known as the barter system. Some other words for the term “valuable” are

  • expensive
  • Precious
  • Rich
  • Worth
  • Worthy

Psychology states that anything that doesn’t have an emotional component is valuable. It is considered valuable because it does not have an emotional component or nothing to do with a personal event.

The term “valuable” can be used both as a noun as well as an adjective. A few sentences are given below for both of the parts of the speech.

  • Put all your valuables in the cupboard. (noun)
  • Trade some of your valuables for money. (noun)
  • All of my valuables are stolen. (noun)
  • My watch is quite valuable. (adjective)
  • The stamp I bought recently is very rare and is very valuable. (adjective) All the paintings in the museum are very valuable (adjective)
valuable

What is Invaluable?

The word “invaluable” is used to describe everything valuable in one’s life. A property that cannot be exchanged for money or bought or sold.

Psychology believes that something is invaluable if it has an emotion behind it and that something with that emotion behind it is associated with a person’s life events is valuable. This emotion or sense of belongingness could be anything. For example, it could be your first school uniform or a souvenir from your favourite family trip.

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Anything that has an untold story behind it is invaluable as one can never think to give it away for some money. Invaluable is all those things that are beyond estimation.

It means that the item which is very dear to you can not be given away in any aspect. Some other words for the term “invaluable” are

  • Priceless
  • Irreplaceable
  • Vital
  • Dearest

Some sentences based on the term “invaluable” are

  • The sweater my grandmother knitted for me is invaluable.
  • All the belongings of my dead mother are invaluable.
  • That car is invaluable because that is my first car.
  • These toys are invaluable because these are the first toys I ever played with when I was a small child.

Main Differences Between Valuable and Invaluable

  • Valuable is something that can be bought/sold in terms of money whereas invaluable is something that is beyond the estimation of money.
  • Valuable is something that doesn’t have any feeling behind it, whereas invaluable has an untold story behind it.
  • Valuable is mostly used as a noun, whereas invaluable can only be used as an adjective.
  • Valuable advice is something which your teachers give because you pay the school fees, whereas invaluable advice is something that the elderly people in your home give.
  • Valuable is similar to or lower than invaluable, whereas invaluable is at the apex as it carries an emotional worth.
Difference Between Valuable and Invaluable
References
  1. https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1769848
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3053520/

Last Updated : 25 July, 2023

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