Difference Between Miss and Ms

Main Difference – Miss vs Ms

Miss and Ms are two titles that are used with the full name and last name of women. Though they are both titles used for women that are pronounced similarly, there is a distinct difference between them. The main difference between Miss and Ms is that Miss a title that is used to refer to unmarried women whereas Ms is a title that can be used to refer to a woman irrespective of her marital status.

Miss – Meaning and Usage

Miss is derived from the word Mistress which was in usage in the 1600s. This term was originally used to address young, unmarried ladies of upper-class households. Now Miss is a title that is used with young women and unmarried women. It is used to address teachers in some countries. It is also used to name beauty pageants such as Miss USA, Miss Universe, Miss World; the contestants in these pageants are unmarried women.

Miss can be used with the last name of a woman (Ex: Miss. Anderson) or with the full name. (Ex: Miss. Miriam Anderson) Miss. is pronounced as /ˈmɪs/. Misses is the plural form of Miss.

Difference Between Miss and Ms

Miss Erin Brady won the Miss USA crown in 2013.

Ms – Meaning and Usage

Although the title Ms. came into usage a long time ago, it only became popular in recent times. The titles Mrs. and Miss. that were used for married women and unmarried women respectively, were the most used titles in the past. However, in the recent past, many writers’ associations and feminist began to suggest that there should be a female equivalent of Mr.(Mister), which doesn’t indicate the marital status of an individual. This was when the title Ms. began to be popular. Ms is now a commonly used title, especially in business and official context. Ms. doesn’t indicate the marital status of a woman. Therefore, it can be used with married, unmarried and divorced women.

Like Miss., it can be used with both the last name (Ex: Ms. Anderson) and the full name of an individual.  (Ex: Ms. Miriam Anderson) Ms. is pronounced as /ˈmɪz/. Mss. or Mses are the plural form of Ms.

Main Difference - Miss vs Ms

Ms. Anne Miroux is the Head of the CSTD Secretariat.

Difference Between Miss and Ms


Miss is a title used for young or unmarried women.

Ms is a title that can be used for women regardless of their marital status.

Marital Status

Miss can be only used for unmarried women.

Ms can be used for unmarried, married, divorced or widowed women.

Professional Use

Miss is sometimes used to address teachers.

Ms is often in business and official context.


Miss is pronounced as /ˈmɪs/.

Ms is pronounced as /ˈmɪz/.


Miss is derived from Mistress.

Ms originated as an equivalent to Mr. (Mister)

Plural Form

Miss is written in the plural form as Misses.

Ms is written in the plural form as Mss. or Mses.Difference Between Miss and Ms - infographic

Image Courtesy:

“Erin Brady 2014″ by Toglenn – Own work. via

“Ms. Anne Miroux” by   via

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