Ser vs. Estar – How to Use Estar

By now, “Ser” should be more familiar to you. But what about  estar to be non-permanent state? Let’s have a closer look at some of the contexts in which you use the verb “Estar”.

For Emotions

What are you feeling? “Estar” is used to convey feelings. Example:
Estou tão triste. I am so sad.

For Weather

“Estar” is often used for weather. Example:
Hoje está calor. It is hot today.

For Temperature

Similarly, “Estar” is also used to describe temperatures. Example:
Está muito frio. It is very cold.

For Describing a Temporary Stay

Staying somewhere briefly? Then “Estar” is what you must use. Example:
Hoje estou na floresta. Today I am at the forest.

For Clothing

If you need to tell someone how you’re dressed, you can use “Estar” too. Example:
Estou de calções azuis, t-shirt branca, e sapatilhas. I am wearing blue shorts, a white t-shirt, and trainers.

For Describing Positions

“Estar” is used to describe your bodily position or how a thing is currently positioned. Examples:
Tu estás deitado na cama. You are lying on your bed.
A Daniela está sentada. Daniela is sitting down.

For Actions

Use “Estar” to describe an action currently being carried out. Example:
Estou a conduzir. I am driving.
There are other ways of using “Estar”, too. Just remember: “Estar” is used for non-permanent (i.e. temporary) conditions, traits, or things.


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