Design

What’s Your Email Sign-Off?

Mary Tyler Moore

How do you sign your emails? This made me laugh…

“Contrary to popular belief, [XOXO] does not mean ‘hugs and kisses,’” Emma Rathbone wrote for The New Yorker. “If anything, it’s intended to convey light affection, like a pat on the butt from a Texan aunt… [XO] is like when you lean in to kiss your Texan aunt on the cheek but you both turn the wrong way and kiss on the mouth.”

What about idiosyncratic sign-offs? My friend David writes, “All good things,” which feels so elegant. “Love and other indoor sports” is the way a Judy Blume character signed all her letters. Writer Sadie Stein goes with “As ever.” An old crush once ended an email, “Yours and yours and yours,” and I almost blacked out from the romance.

I’ve written “xoxo” for so many years that it has now become a part of my name. My sign off, whether I’m writing to my husband or the exterminator, is “Joannaxo.” If it’s an important work email, I’ll sometimes leave it off, but a plain “Joanna” just looks SO RUDE.

Some people really stick with theirs. When Churchill declared war on Japan in 1941, he signed his letter to the Japanese Ambassador, “Your obedient servant, Winston S. Churchill.” When asked about it later, he pointed out, “It costs nothing to be polite.”

Do you have a signature sign-off? Do you ever sign “xo” in work emails? (Busted.)

P.S. The hardest tongue twister, and annoying words.

  1. bisbee says...

    I love the “all good things” and might use it in the future.

    However, I would never sign an email with “xo” unless it were to go to my grandchildren, children, husband or close friends. If I got a work email or an email from a stranger signed with “xo” I would find it very strange and mildly inappropriate.

    • Karyn says...

      I’m pretty sure this is how many of my coworkers feel when they see my xox’s, but I just can’t stop doing it! They fly off my fingers so quickly and I firmly feel we need more affection and goodwill at work.

  2. Elinor says...

    The douche-y guy at work signs his emails “Cordially,” and it makes me want to punch him every time I read them! I don’t normally email sign-off with anything other than thanks, but most of my email correspondence is work-related.

    • katie says...

      Baaaaaaa ha ha!
      I would feel the same way.

  3. Kakes says...

    Years ago, my most elegant lady boss signed all her letters “with every good wish”. I always loved reading that but would never have the nerve to use it myself.

  4. Jenny says...

    Best wishes,
    Jenny Tiskus
    Because it kind of rhymes.

    • katie says...

      Pure gold. It would so delight me to read that. Nice!

  5. Jessica says...

    It always bugs me when people sign emails, “Many thanks.” It seems overly cloying to me for some reason, like they are wringing their hands in anticipation over my hopeful agreement to throw out my old lunch from the fridge on Fridays. However, on the opposite end of the spectrum is my loving father who signs all of his older-white-man chain letter/inspirational quote emails to me and everyone in our immediate family with “Regards, ST,” his first and last initial. Straight and to the point, I guess.

  6. Jacqueline says...

    So, I almost always sign off “Kind regards” or “Warm regards”. I’m a pretty warm and fuzzy person, so I think it works.
    The funny part is how I sign off phone calls. My whole family consistently says “Loveyoubye!” at the end of calls. Less appropriate is when I accidentally said it to my boss before hanging up. Merp.

    • Jessica says...

      Haha, we say “Loveyoubye,” too – and I have made similar gaffes!

  7. Sarah Beth says...

    With my family and friends, I always sign off “xx sb” for two little kisses (I’m not a hugger!) and my initials. It’s automatic at this point, and I’m so used to signing off as “sb” that I often do it at work, too.
    My sorority had a little code that we would use to sign off letters and emails and also say during chapter, and my sorority sisters, who are still some of my best friends almost 15 years later!, still often sign off with that little string of letters. I just searched my emails for it, and it made me so happy to see how often we used it to sign off on emails ranging from baby announcements to taco night!

  8. Ro says...

    I sign off with “thanks!” or “thanks in advance!” as a way to keeping things upbeat in work emails. But if I really mean business (or have already thanked them too many times) I’ll just do a dash and then my name. For private emails and postcards, I like a simple heart. <3

  9. Jamie says...

    Is the xo thing just a New York thing? I don’t think I’ve ever received an email with that, least of all from a colleague or contractor. I work in academia in the midwest and mostly people use “best”, “cheers”, and similar. A girlfriend of mine who is a head of school uses “Onward!” as her sign-off, which is a good one for a leader. I stick to “sincerely.” And often use a smiley as well :)

  10. Andrea says...

    Later tater……….

  11. Ashley H says...

    Usually just a “Thanks! –Ashley”

    Short, sweet, cheerful (maybe?) and I’m usually only emailing someone to ask a question…so it works.

  12. Dana Johnson says...

    I’m a health teacher so it only seems right that mine is, “in good health”.

  13. AD says...

    I work in a VERY consensus and collaboration-centric org. So the start of the email is often thanking them for doing something before I lead into asking for the next thing. Same with external recipients since I’m in fundraising.

    I’ve taken to using the last line to pre-thank them for the next step or their continued involvement, along the lines of “Many thanks for your time and help on XYZ. Looking forward to talking soon.” – Name

    Then I don’t have to stress out over a perfect, brief, or witty sign-off!

  14. Joaquina says...

    The only sign-offs that really chap my hide are the biblical quotes, because I work for a school district. The last one I saw in a co-worker’s email managed to combine politics (Pres. Reagan) AND religion (“Jesus…”). Guess my email sign-off should say something about evolution and atheism.

  15. Love this post! Eeeek! I use to always sign mine “All good things” , then I went to XO, then to Love and Peace, and I have used kindest regards, Warm regards, Blessings and UPMO (you piss me off) LOL! I think I will stick to “All good things” again. It really depends on who I am signing off with and this one is the one I have liked the best so far. Great Post!

    • Brooke says...

      Oh my gosh Kim you made me laugh out loud!! Where does UPMO come from and who do you use it with? So good….

  16. Barb says...

    I think i only ever email my kids’ teachers and so my sign off is, “Thanks for all you do.”

  17. Juliette says...

    This is so weird… I dislike “Warmly” so much, and this thread makes it sound so popular! It’s not cold nor hot, it’s kind of like “moist”, it’s nothing! I really don’t like it. I work in finance and sign everything either “Thank you” (for some reason, “Thanks” sounds too casual) or “Best regards” which I really dislike too but are the standard in my office. Personal emails are signed “Bisous!” because I am French and we ALWAYS kiss goodbye!

  18. Megan says...

    I work at Crayola, and my work email sign off is “Have a colorful day.” (Each letter of “colorful” in a different color of the rainbow.) It makes me happy every time I send an email; I hope it brightens my email recipients’ days too. :)

    • Katie says...

      It does!!! My nonprofit recently worked with Crayola and I LOVED noticing that sign off from an employee. So cheerful.

  19. Madeleine says...

    I sign off all work emails with “Yours truly, Madeleine.” Perhaps most importantly, I always, always use a proper greeting. Email is not a text message and shouldn’t be used as such (and even then, I start texts with “Hi” or “Ola!” if it is someone I don’t have daily contact with). I work in law and at first the formality in communication made me roll my eyes but now I so appreciate it. I appreciate that there are situations where formality is out of place, but respect and elegance never goes out of style.

  20. Lisa Murphy says...

    I sign off with either thank you kindly for a more formal email, and giggles, for friends and family.

  21. Musilla says...

    Thanks in advance is me saying ‘I will seriously flip if this doesn’t happen’
    I teach at second level and often email students, I found this tricky as title + surname is super formal if I’m just letting them know about extra curricular or thanking them for submitting work/helping out. For this I’ve settled on ‘best /thanks, and my initials’
    My very good friends usually get ‘mwah’, or a compliment

  22. Ashley says...

    I live in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan where it feels like an icebox for half of the year. Regularly, I sign my emails off with “Warm regards,” but once we hit low temps I jokingly sign “WARM regards!”

  23. Sharon in Scotland says...

    Michael Rosen talked about this on his show, “Word of Mouth” on BBC 4. It was so interesting, but for the life of me I can only remember, “all good things” as an ending
    If I’m at work then it’s “sincerely/faithfully” for formal messages, “regards” for people I know well and “hope all is well” for people I have a deeper relationship with.
    I have never used “cheers’ in my life!!

  24. Nicole Wight says...

    “Lovingly” – I believe I got the idea from letters by artist Georgia O’Keefe at a time in my life when I was searching other women’s identities to find my own – a pinch at a time.

  25. Megan says...

    Mine change drastically depending on the nature of the email! For work I most often use “Many thanks”. I did read somewhere that the emails with the highest response rate use “Thanks in advance”. Curious if others agree!

    • Madie says...

      Thanks in advance may get a higher response rate, but I bet it’s only due to it’s vaguely threatening tone! I shudder at Thanks in advance… doesn’t it sound so presumptuous? Like, “I know you’re going to do this thing for me…”
      I use Many thanks too. :)

  26. Emily says...

    I use “Best, Emily” for work, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve caught an email before I hit “sent” where what I’d actually typed was: “Beset, Emily.”

    Some work days one really does feel beset, though!

    • Jenny says...

      AHAHAHA I love this and want to use it forever.

    • Tereza says...

      this is the bes(e)t.

    • Sara says...

      Bahahaha! That is brilliant, if accidental!

    • Nicola says...

      I work in breast cancer, and have mistakenly signed
      Breast,
      Nicola

      (instead of Best, Nicola)

  27. Gretchen says...

    Be best.

    I like to see who’s paying attention. ;)

    • K says...

      hahahahaha this cracked me up!

  28. Emily says...

    what a fun post!
    Warmly,
    Emily

  29. Jackie says...

    I’ve always done, Thank you! at work. I’ve been told my emails can be too “business like”, whatever that means, so I feel like the ! softens it a little bit.

    I work mainly with international winemakers so I feel like anything else could be interpreted incorrectly.

  30. Shannon says...

    For years my sign-offs rhymes as an inside joke with…myself?
    Love you,
    SQ

    Or

    Have a nice day,
    Mrs. Quay

    I sincerely don’t think anyone noticed and I laughed every time. Small joys.

    • Hannah says...

      Hi Shan. Knew this was you before I even saw your name. Love you and your inside jokes.

      Have to go pee pee,
      HD :)

  31. Sawyer says...

    At some point in time my dad started referring to my mom—or maybe she began referring to herself— as “Queen of the Universe” So now she signs all correspondences with him “Love, Q of U” My mother is quite introverted and I appreciate the written assertion of regality.

    • Jamie says...

      Love a good mom sign-off. Mine does: Love, Your MOM. In all caps. I don’t know why but it’s also assertive!

  32. elizabeth says...

    Great post, but any post is better with a picture of Mary Tyler Moore.
    Thank you, COJ, you made my day!

  33. Erin says...

    Does anyone remember a kid’s or young adult’s book where the character signed off “yours ’til Niagara falls”? It’s always stuck in my mind but I’ve long forgotten where it came from!

    • Madeleine says...

      Yes! It is the same book where a character signed off with “yours ’til the meatball bounces” – I’ve never forgotten it …though, like you, I HAVE forgotten the title of the book. Yours in forgetful solidarity, M

    • Reign says...

      Is it the Friends-4-Ever series by Deirdre Corey?

  34. Meghan says...

    This always stresses me out! I read somewhere recently that “Best” is viewed as the worst sign off and a curt “Thanks” isn’t far behind. “Thanks in advance” was the most well received, so I try to use that…but it doesn’t always apply. I used to write “Cordially,” and I still love that, however, now I am in a scientific academic setting and I have felt like it might be a bit pretentious?

    Funny one: my co-worker has decided anyone she wants to stab with scissors gets a “Warm regards” from her. We are in the midwest, so…it makes sense. LOL!

    • Dianna says...

      For most work emails I use “Thank you in advance” after reading that it gets a better response from people too!

  35. Nicole says...

    Signing off with “Thanks” is a pet peeve of mine. Since sign offs are so automatic, I feel like it cheapens the word. I once had a supervisor say “ I always show gratitude to my staff. I say thanks at the end of every e-mail”. My only thought was “Sure, but do you actually mean it?!”.

    Oddly enough, signing with “Love” doesn’t have the same effect. I feel loved every single time. Love wins!

    • Becca says...

      I usually sign off with “thanks.” It think it’s because I’m careful to make it clear what I want out of an email (let me know what you think of __, etc.), so it feels appropriate to preemptively thank the person even if it’s a small request. I’m also a freelancer, so I am actually grateful to the people who employ me.

      I do have to watch it when I sign off on other types of emails — “thanks” doesn’t make sense if I’m just saying “hey, I got your email, I’ll get on it.” Ha!

  36. Sarah says...

    Cheers!
    Sarah

  37. Alex says...

    My dad signs all emails and text messages with “LUD” short for “Love you, Dad.” I love it and it still makes me smile every time.

    • Lara says...

      That is so sweet!

    • Katie says...

      My dad did the same (although he did LYD – he couldn’t come around to “u” in place of “you”) but then one day he decided it should by LYBDE (“love you best dad ever”). He is pretty great so no one has ever questioned the compliment he gave himself, but it always makes me smile!

    • Alli says...

      I always sign all emails and text messages to my boys with “LUM”! Hope it makes them smile too!

  38. Calla says...

    I try to keep my work sign off professional and just use “Best, Calla”. However I really need to learn how to wean myself off exclamation marks. “Thank you for help,” comes across as so blunt to me that I always end up caving and sounding like a maniac whose need for approval is palpable “Thank you for your help! Let me know if you need anything else! Looking forward to discussing on Tuesday! “

    • K says...

      I worked hard over the past few years to eliminate about 90% of my exclamation points in professional emails. At first it felt like I was being so demanding. But I noticed that most of my older colleagues (and especially all the men) never used exclamation points. Like you said, i think it made me seem like a terrible people pleaser and like I craved approval. Sometimes you need to make a declarative statement, and that doesn’t make you a demanding jerk.

    • I feel you on this, Calla. I have to go back into every work email and remove at least half the exclamations. Even here, I’m trying SO hard to restrain myself from using one. :)

    • jessica says...

      Ugh. Such a struggle. I always re-read my work emails to remove exclamation points and excessive apologies.

    • Julie says...

      That’s funny, because I’m the opposite and never never used exclamation Mark’s until I started the job I am currently in (surrounded by women that use so many!) I started trying to include them to not seem so brash, but I am 100% certain I’m not using them correctly. Haha

  39. Kaitlyn says...

    I use “Best” for most work communications, although sometimes I throw in a “Thanks,” just to throw people off my scent. I almost never sign personal emails with anything more than a simple “K;” though to be fair, my personal emails are basically just long text messages, lists of things to do, or links to things I think my mom or sister would like.

    My husband (from the same small city that I grew up in) uses “Cheers” which makes me throw up in my mouth every time I read it. Thankfully, he transitioned to a job where he doesn’t have to write emails frequently, so he doesn’t have to pull that one out too often.

    • K says...

      TOTALLY AGREE on cheers. It’s just too much.

    • Riley says...

      YES! I haaaaate cheers. It feels so contrived and like everyone is trying to be british…? I don’t understand it.

  40. Tesia Geyer says...

    My grandmother, who at 90 still atttends her town’s weekly peace vigil, always signs her email with, “love and peace”. Coming from her, you know she really means it.

  41. Maura says...

    well, for work it varies…but for my friends it’s often LYLAS or LYLAS4EVA (depending on the occasion).

  42. I always do xx, instead of xo. More hugs, less kissing.

    • Jessica says...

      I always thought the X’s were the kisses and the O’s were the hugs (circle of hug arms, pucker of kiss lips).
      Am I the only one?

    • Alison says...

      Where I live the X is the kiss and the O is the hug!

    • Liza says...

      Agreed. O’s are the hugs and X’s the kiss.

    • Madie says...

      Hahaha agreed, the X’s are the kisses and the O’s are the hugs!

  43. Rebecca says...

    I’m a Rebecca who is universally known by B names- Becca, Becky, Bex, depending on the group. AND YET, my affectionate sign off is ‘Rx’. Even though NONE of the people I write it to call me by my full name. Ever. WHY? But it’s habit now, and ‘Bx’ looks like I’ve typo’d ‘Bex’, which would look odd to people who call me that AND people who never do.

    I have a close male friend who signs off ‘Best wishes,’ even in quick emails to me, and it really makes me laugh in an affectionate way. At one point he even signed off Whatsapp messages to me ‘Best,’ and his name, which I found both really sweet and really bizarre.

    At work I change between Best, Many thanks, and all best wishes. I used to work in publishing and it was much more kissy huggy environment- I could judge the likelihood of my event pitch coming off based on whether I had graduated to kisses and smily faces in the publicist’s sign off!

  44. Kay says...

    My friend’s father is French, so English isn’t his first language. He used to sign his emails by saying “Best of all, Clement” (instead of “All the best, Clement”)

    • Rose says...

      Hahaha! Very French of him.

    • Kate says...

      Hahahahaha I love this!!

    • Blythe says...

      I love this so much!

    • Erin says...

      This really made me giggle.

    • Nicole says...

      This is so endearing.

    • Neale says...

      This one made me laugh out loud. Too sweet :)

    • ana says...

      Brilliant! haha!

  45. Lane says...

    My 89-year-old grandmother is very hip and just recently learned how to send texts from her brand new iPhone. Not one to give up the habits of traditional snail-mail, she writes out every single text message as if it were a formal letter using a proper introduction and sign-off:
    “Dear Lane,
    How is work today?
    Love, Grandma and Grandpa”

    • Emily says...

      Oh how much I love this! So much better than “Sup”.

    • Ali says...

      My grandmother does this, too! And always misspells my name because she uses Siri to dictate her texts! I love it, though.

    • HH says...

      Love it! On the other end of the spectrum, my 86 year old grandmother has fully embraced the abbreviations of texting and I frequently receive the “HBU?” and using numbers for words like “2” and “4”. I suspect this is because she has an old phone, but I still find it so endearing. What I love most of all, though, is for my birthday she always sends “HBD” and I’m pretty sure she is who I learned that abbreviation from! Nothing like having your grandmother teach you text lingo as a millenial ;)

    • Florencia says...

      Grandparents are the best. When my sister was teaching my 90 year old grandpa to send emails, he wrote me one and hit send. Then he said “oh, but she won’t get it till Monday!” He thought actual people were involved in the exchange and they had the weekends off. Adorable.

  46. Amy says...

    Be Bold, or Live Large, are two of my favorites. I also use Thanks so much, with work stuff.

  47. Gertrude Webster says...

    Fondly is my go to closing, or less often, Hugs

  48. Rebecca says...

    I started “Kind Regards” as my sign-off in college in emails to professors and classmates, but always wondered if it was a bit formal/stuffy for a student.. I liked the alliteration with my name so much though that I kept it for my first workplace. Now I work for a government agency and it’s my department’s policy for all external communication to be signed “Sincerely.” Internal communication is so casual, I usually do “Thanks” or “Thank you.” If I’ve already thanked the recipient earlier in the email, I’ll just sign off with “-Rebecca.” This post makes me miss my old sign-off though!

    Kind Regards,
    Rebecca

  49. Christina says...

    I write,
    “Take Care”
    To my patients in our email correspondence. I’m a mental health therapist so that seems to fit.

  50. I work at the UN and I decided years ago it is “all the best” or “best wishes” , but more often the former.

  51. Alex says...

    For years I’ve signed every letter “truly” except to my husband who always gets “yours always.”

  52. Emma says...

    These comments are making me think of all things funny in emails/texts. An old boss used to text us in all caps. My coworkers and I would shout the texts to each other to convey her messages. When you’re a 20 something college custodian it’s so funny! None of us were brave enough to text her back in all caps. Also my dad texts back lol for EVERYTHING! My siblings and I started texting each other like that and now we’re so used to it we aren’t even making fun of my dad anymore! My little sister’s friend (16) said her dad always texts back “k”. Like what time will you pick me up from school? “K.” Haha
    And I want to send my grandma (88) a text message so badly but I know my mom will kill me because she’ll have to be the one to explain it all to my grandma.

    • elizabeth says...

      Thank you, Emma, for your comment about the all caps. A long time ago, when the internet was new, our HR person wrote in the company newsletter that “using all caps makes people feel they’re being yelled at.” I so agree! And then lo and behold, our division got the boss from hell, and he would occasionally use all caps in the SUBJECT LINE. And sure enough, you were in trouble. And I wish I would have said, “I won’t respond to any email with all caps in the subject line.” Can we make that a workers’ rights movement?

  53. Brooke says...

    My aunt would sign all her postcards and emails to her nieces “yela” which for years I thought was a very weird way to say goodbye. Then I learned it stood for “your ever loving aunt.” Now my cousins and I end our emails and postcards to each other “yelc” (your ever loving cousin). I love that we are continuing our aunt’s funny send-off tradition.

    • Abbie says...

      Stealing that!!!

  54. Emily says...

    I love my grandma’s email signature! When she sends emails to family members in a group email, she signs it –

    “Love – BetBet, Betty, Mom, or whatever you call me”

  55. Diana McNeill says...

    Warm regards, Diana

  56. For personal emails, I use “fondly” unless it’s someone very near and dear, and then they get “love” or “xoxo.” I only use “xoxo” when it’s someone I would actually hug and kiss in real life :)

    For professional emails, I use “Thanks” when appropriate and “Sincerely” otherwise.

    I’d like to work up to “Peace” because I’m a Mennonite and I long for more peace in the world, but I don’t know – somehow it doesn’t feel right yet. . . sounds like I’m a pastor or a religion professor which I’m definitely not.

    • gfy says...

      My mother signs “Peace” and even SAYS “Peace” in place of good-bye, lol. To everyone across the board. I usually sign “All the best” for business, and “Love”, “Lot’s of Love” or “love and light” to everyone else.

  57. Brooke says...

    I had a pastor who once signed all correspondence “Blessings, ..” I thought that was such a nice way to leave someone. Not sure it’s the best for professional situations but it feels beautiful for many others.

  58. Jessica says...

    I am shocked at the number of people here who earnestly use “warmly”! which to me is basically saying

    Moist,
    Jessica

    aka not a fan!! Thanks, Thanks! Have a good day! See you soon, Love you, BOOM. DONE.

    • Emily says...

      Oh my goodness. Spit out my coffee laughing on this one!

    • Patricia says...

      Hahahaha! You made me laugh out loud for realz Jessica.

    • HH says...

      LOL! I’m going to think twice before doing that again!

    • Emily says...

      “Moist,
      Jessica”
      Had me cackling at my desk! I can’t stand when people use “warmly” because it seems so disingenous to me, and now I like it even less :D

    • Rachel says...

      YES! I’m so on your team for this one.

    • Fgb says...

      Hahaha! Warmly is the worst.

  59. Clare says...

    “All the best”

  60. JD says...

    Churchill’s “your obedient servant” reminds me of Hamilton. The song between Hamilton and Aaron Burr is hilarious but I’m pretty sure it’s also based off letters between the two of them. Even though they were rivals and writing each other heated letters they would sign it that same way every time. The dramaaaaaa ;)

    • Jamie says...

      LOL yes! I have the honor to be your obedient servant… A. Ham.

  61. Alissa says...

    I work in marketing and public relations and I commonly finish with ‘Thanks’, ‘Kind regards’, and ‘Cheers’ (sometimes I change up the language with a ‘merci’ or a ‘gracias’). I usually just try to leave off with some positivity and appreciation for the exchange. And Churchill was on point… (en pointe?)

    If it’s family or friends sometimes I will do a ‘with love’, ‘miss you’, or something slightly more intimate closing.

  62. Marki says...

    I have no idea why, but Jane Austen’s characters signed their letters, “I am yours, etc., John Willoughby.” I love the brevity of “etc.,” as if it stands in for a number of warm statements.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      yes!!!! love that so much.

  63. Kt says...

    This is too cute!

  64. Emily L says...

    My mom and my aunt have the cutest ones to each other. My mom signs “LSS” for “Little Sister Sue” and my aunt signs “BSS” for “Big Sister Sal.”

    I sign “Best” and my husband uses “Respectfully” for EVERYTHING, a habit he picked up working for the military.

  65. Sarah says...

    My favorite sign-off ever:

    “Bye,
    Sue”

    (the sender’s name was Sue) I have no idea where Sue learned this or why she thinks it’s normal, but I don’t know her well enough to ask.

    • kaela says...

      LOL I love this.

    • Alison says...

      this one made me laugh out loud :)

    • Cheryl says...

      For casual emails where my feelings toward the recipient fall somewhere between regards and best:

      Positively,
      Cheryl

      Now, should the regards in “Kind regards” be capitalized or not?! Emails are all over the place on this.

  66. Nina says...

    My grandmother signed every card I ever received XOXOXO and I do that now. She totally meant kiss hug kiss hug kiss hug…I can almost feel her soft skin giving me a kiss on my cheek and the warmth of her love when I write it myself. (she also included a $2 bill so they always hold a special place in my heart). Emails i usually write: best. I had an attorney who wrote Best Regards and he said the same thing as Winston Churchill (never knew he was a total plagiariser) and it made me think but…Best Regards can seem sarcastic…Best – you never really know what BEST I’m wishing you ;) Even if I despise you I am still wishing you the Best – best painful death…best no friends or love ever…you just never know

    • Julie says...

      Bahahhaaha. I always use ‘Best’ too and now I will think of it in another light.

  67. Ella says...

    I almost always end with “Speak soon” but now I’m reading these comments and I think I’m the only one haha. It just always seemed professional (I’ll be following up on this and getting back to you asap) and warm (can’t wait to talk again soon). Works for everyone.

    • Amanda says...

      Ella, “chat soon” is one of my go-tos!

    • Kerri says...

      I do “talk soon” depending on the person :)

  68. Meghan Hole says...

    “Warmly” is my favorite email sign-off. It feels polite, genuine and friendly—something that a lot of signatures seem to lack. I also really like “talk soon” for its conciseness.

    • Jen says...

      Did you see the “moist” comment above? Made me laugh so hard because I always used to use warmly!

  69. Amanda G says...

    My husband always signs off emails to me as “LVU, Me” It drove me batty at first – why not type out “love you”??? But I’ve grown to adore it over the years…

    At work, I always use “Best, Amanda” if trying to be more formal, and “Thanks! Amanda” in almost every other situations. I had totally forgotten about the sign-off “Warmly” and just adore it – will have to use it more :)

  70. Annie says...

    I think an “xo”, as sweet as it is, could be negatively misconstrued or come across as awkward in a professional setting or to someone that is not close to you.

    • Heather says...

      I would definitely get written up or fired for signing off xo or xoxo!

  71. Sarah says...

    I teach college level business writing and always recommend sticking with “Sincerely” for any professional correspondence. Can’t go wrong with that. “Thank you” and “Thanks” are safe bets too. I dislike the abruptness of not using a sign off at all.

    For my personal correspondence, I stick with “Take care.” It covers most relationships.

  72. Katherine says...

    I work in the wine industry, so I always sign off with, “Cheers, Katherine”. Any excuse to remind people there are exciting wines out there to try!

  73. CC says...

    That picture is so funny!!! What a great pairing with this article.

  74. Dana says...

    When my son was in second grade, he turned in a note to his teacher about why he hadn’t done his homework the night before. The teacher instantly knew he’d forged the note because he’d signed it “XOX, Momma”…

    • Alex says...

      Hahahahahaha! I love kids.

    • Caitlyn Kady says...

      OMG, chuckling out loud!

  75. Beth says...

    I always sign my emails- work and personal- with “Take care, ____”. It just seems warm like my personality. In the end, I do truly wish people to take care of themselves and others, even if it a business I don’t know. It’s nice to know a stranger wishes you well.

  76. C says...

    I use best as my email auto signature. Definitely not thanks! or xo. (I am a professor & many of the emails I get are from people in all roles emailing to ask for something that they could do themselves… I am not thanking them for laziness. Ha.) Loving everyone’s ideas. Now for how to start out the email! That’s where I struggle.

  77. shannon says...

    With friends, I prefer “Aloha”… being from hawaii. If its outside of work but not a “friend”, then “Regards” works for me.

    Otherwise for work, I just include my name, unless I’m actually asking a favor, then “thanks” works as well as anything. I like “with gratitude” which someone suggested above but it sounds way too formal for my work setting.

  78. Kate says...

    I oscillate between xoxo, cheers, best, and regards – all depending on how familiar/professional the relationship is. I sometimes stress to a too high degree about the sign-off, when the reality is, I rarely think much of other peoples’ sign offs! Unless they are particularly charming, in which case, it’s never a bad thing!

  79. Sonja says...

    I’ve got a few! Cheers, Best, Warm regards, Thanks! – because intense enthusiasm when asking for something at work goes a long way!

  80. Jane says...

    I work in an administrative position in higher ed, and I email with students quite a bit. They range from very formal sign offs (e.g., “sincerely,” “kind regards,” and “thank you very much for your time”) to quite informal (e.g., just ending abruptly, no punctuation or sign off at all, as if they were whisked away unexpectedly but juuust managed to hit send). I always find the particularly formal ones so endearing – they’re much more formal than my own emails!

  81. Carla says...

    “Later Sk8r”
    But only if I like you:)

  82. JennP says...

    Hahaha! My sign off has been “Best” for years; it’s even on my email signature. Then I clicked on the link, read what it means, and laughed out loud. BTW, I do own beautiful fountain pens.

  83. Ashley F. says...

    Best,

  84. Megan says...

    When I was in college, I was a nanny for an 8 year old girl who had very wealthy and often absent parents. Her dad was always out of town on business and when he returned, he often spent his time watching sports rather than catching up with her. On one particular occasion when he returned from a long business trip, his daughter ran up to his car, grabbed his hand and started gabbing about all the things she wanted to show him in the garden. In response, he told her he didn’t have time as he needed to unpack and watch the game. Under her breath, she mumbled “You’ve been gone for a MONTH and you can’t even spend a few minutes with your daughter?” He didn’t hear and asked her to repeat it. In response, she flipped her hair and with brilliantly fake enthusiasm said, “Nevermind, love yaaaaa!” She had learned that it was best to just accept that he won’t be around as much as she wants, put a smile on and pretend that everything was okay. It was a sad realization for an 8 year old (and her nanny!) but I was proud of her for not putting too much energy in a relationship that would never be perfect. To this day (almost 7 years later), I, along with my friends and family, sign off on phone calls, letters and emails with “Love yaaaaa!” Some things just stick.

  85. M says...

    A close friend of mine sent me a text one day saying “I just accidentally signed a work email ‘Love, Ciara’ and sent it, what do I do”

    I truly don’t know what to do in that situation, but thinking of what the respondent’s reaction was when they received that email still makes me laugh.

    • Last week, I had two emails open: One to my husband and another to a publicist. I accidentally signed off, “I love you!” to the publicist. It was totally embarrassing, but we both got a good laugh.

  86. Rachel says...

    My goofy sister admitted that she would sign emails to our Spanish speaking friends “con carne” (which means “with meat”) since it looks like a typo for the more traditional “con cariño”. Which means with affection.

    • HH says...

      “Con carne” made me laugh! I once signed “Gutentag” to a guy I was getting to know. Autocorrect changed it to “Gluten Nacho.” (!?) So we started signing off Gluten Nacho… which transformed, when texting, into a bread emoji followed by a taco emoji. Bread taco.

      As part of my dissertation, I’m researching an artist who worked as a commercial illustrator during the 1890s. He signed all of his notes to clients, friends, and family “In haste,” I found that amusing and so true to the life of a commercial artist! Some things never change!

      Bread taco, all.

    • Emily says...

      These two are my favorite! Keep your warmly, best, sincerely. I’ll take a gluten nacho and con carne any day!

  87. R says...

    Someone once signed off “hearts, bunnies and rainbows,” and I THINK she was being serious. My friend and I, 10+ years later, still use it as our sign-offs to each other (sarcastically of course).

  88. Katie says...

    For work it’s usually Thanks, but all friend and family emailing is “hugs”. Because I love hugs, and as I’ve grown realize how lovely they can be.

    • Brooke says...

      Katie I love this. My mom received a wordplay card years ago where the front of the card was a drawing of little pigs eating brunch and inside the card inside it said “Hogs and Quiches”. We still use this to this day which feel affectionate and silly.

  89. Jess says...

    Two of my relatives have my favorite email signatures ever. My aunt signs everything with “LOL, Nancy” and it took me *so long* to figure out that she means lots of love, not laughing out loud! And when my uncle writes emails to his siblings, he signs them “Brother, Mike.”

  90. MS says...

    Hilarious – I love it. I would love to have different signatures for different scenarios in the career field I am in…
    Your’s truly annoyed
    Not-so-humbled by your attitude
    You Are Truly Special

  91. Kristina L says...

    My sweet grandma learned how to use the internet in her 80s (seriously, how amazing is that?), and she would always sign her notes, “About to push send…..wheeeeeee! Here it goes!” as if she were imagining her email message flying from her computer to mine like a little bird soaring through the clouds. It made me smile every time.

    • Rebecca says...

      I love this!

    • M says...

      This is so adorable

    • Brooke says...

      Oh my goodness Kristina this is delightful! Your grandmother has so much whimsy :).

      I’m adoring this post for showing that we all think about these little things – it’s so human. Also learning so many dear and hilarious stories of people’s colleagues and loved ones and grandparents.

  92. Molly says...

    “Warmly,”
    Then my name

    I feels nice but not too sweet.

    • annie says...

      i always feel good when someone signs off ‘warmly, …’ —it’s the perfect balance between friendly and professional (but not cold, because… it’s warm!).

      i’ve used ‘warm regards’ in cover letters before and i really like that, too. it just feels a little more lovely than ‘Regards’ which seems so blah.

  93. Molly says...

    I always use “All my best” for work emails. When writing to my husband – “Forever yours” or “All my love”.

    I once found a letter from when my mom was a kid at camp, writing to her parents and signed it “Your Daughter In Christ” which I still laugh about. So formal and disconnected feeling!

  94. Megan says...

    I typically sign off with “Have a wonderful day/afternoon/evening/weekend.” For me it’s a “best wishes” but a little more specific? Who knows?!

    Have a wonderful afternoon,
    Megan

  95. Nadege says...

    Can I just share the craziest sign off that I am still a bit reeling from? I’m at work reading this, closed a few windows for our IT guy to install something on my computer, and as he was leaving, I thanked him and (i’m cringing here) he replied: “love you” AHHHH!!!! like you know the auto-reflex way one does when saying goodbye on the phone to ones mom!? AHHH!! I stood frozen for like a full minute trying to make time reverse so that this could un-happen.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Hahahah omg I am cringing and laughing so much reading that!!

    • Rebecca says...

      That happened to my friend when she was dropping her kid off at school. Her kid was leaving the car and she shouted to him, “LOVE YOU.” Then the parent dad who had volunteered to help the kids get out of the cars that morning shouted back, “LOVE YOU TOO!”. It was total auto-reflex.

    • Nadege says...

      … and he heading back here in like 10 minutes to see how the install is coming along… i’m dying.

    • Marcella says...

      Lol!! One time in college the lady who swiped in our student IDs in the dining hall who always said “welcome!” after every swipe, i responded “welcome!” back, haha. then i was like wait why did i just say welcome back!? lol.

    • Heather says...

      I feel like there’s nothing else to say than, “You too, buddy.”

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      @heather hahahaha

    • Heather D says...

      I accidentally said that to the guy who delivers our office supplies. I signed the delivery slip, he said, “Thanks, have a good one!” and I said, “love you, bye! ” Then I died and have resurrected myself just to share my embarrassment with strangers on the internet.

  96. Jen says...

    I’m so torn! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve changed my work signature. Right now I’m on “Very Respectfully,” and I used to use “Best,” and then switched to “Best regards.” I work in government, and it’s all about the chain of command. I wish I could just sign off without any ending at all, but that has its own connotations!

  97. I sign mine “Warmly, Andrea.” It feel nicer than “best” but still vague enough to pass in the workplace.

    Can you do another post on how to START emails? My fiance always starts his “Hey,” and it drive me NUTS.

    I prefer to skip the salutation and go straight to the good stuff.

    • Katie says...

      Ha, this reminds me how my husband thinks its so weird I answer “Hello?” when he calls, even though I know it’s him. Habit I guess!

    • Meredith says...

      I always write “Hello Andrea!”

      It seems to work in all situations for me. Friendly, not too informal or too formal, and perky!

    • Carol says...

      I always start with “Hi [name]” I think it’s friendly and not too formal while still staying professional. And for the record, I pretty much always sign off with “thanks!” even when it doesn’t seem to fit the context of the email…I would never say something like “best regards” in normal conversation so it would feel so awkward for me to type it!

    • Jennifer says...

      Interesting, this. My husband would prefer I skipped unnecessary words in emails because they waste time and energy. But I see it differently now. I served on a board a few years ago and there was a lot of sniping happening between board and other members of the organization. The president began encouraging all of us to use salutations and closings in our emails to make things more civil. I didn’t really believe it would work, but it did! It forced everyone to contemplate who the receiver was, and to decide how they wished to be viewed. Now I always do it. In this fractious world we live in, it seems like it can’t hurt to be just a little bit more kind. It only takes a few seconds.
      I dislike “Best” but appreciate “Warmly”, or “Sincerely Yours”. “Take care” is also good for almost any situation.

  98. Hannah says...

    For work stuff, “Thanks!” or “Yours” (*do* people read that as weirdly intimate? I think it’s slightly warmer than “Sincerely” without the creepy fake-Britishness of “Cheers!”) or just my initial for close colleagues.

    For friend stuff, XOXO, but also (when complaining about whatever silly nonsense is bothering me) “Yours in the struggle,” which always made me roll my eyes when earnest political friends did it in grad school, but makes me laugh when I’m making fun of my own pettiness.

    • Mary says...

      I’m living in Germany and a doctor here (treating me in English) once finished an email with ‘sincerely, yours’. it seemed an odd mixture of out of place formality and inappropriately but amusingly romantic. Etiquette isn’t the same in both languages and his English was amazing but you know how it goes with nuances. Oh the dangers are a lurking at every turn, even when you’re speaking your own mother tongue. God help anyone I speak German to. I’m all about the kind regards btw.

    • Sonja says...

      Hahaha! Maybe I should rethink my use of Cheers! I always use it as a sign off when a project or ask is complete like, Cheers! We’re done!

      I’ve only received Yours in personal settings which I always think is so nice. But reading this is a good reminder to assume positive intent! Colleague doesn’t mean it in an intimate way but more as Yours (buddy, colleague, partner, etc).

  99. I’ve adopted “xx” from my British husband and his family. :)

    • Tina Lemna says...

      I’ve adopted the same from my British friends ☺️

    • Tina Lemna says...

      I’ve adopted xx from my British friends ☺️

  100. Jennie says...

    This was actually enlightening to me. I had such a negative, visceral reaction to signing off work emails as XO, but I know it is perfectly fine for you to do so! For me, a Marketing Executive in a 460,000+ employee business consulting firm, it would be utterly unprofessional and also not how I want to project myself. My signature is “thanks in advance” if there is an ask and “I look forward to your perspective” if I am expecting them to respond. Everyone is so crazy busy that I like to use my sign off as a final call to action (Marketing Executive here!) When all else fails “Thanks” or “Warmly” fits the bill. Everyone else gets “Love” except my 6 year old son. I sign off on correspondence to him as “All My Love, Mom”. I did that since the day he was born, because the love was so huge and unlike anything I ever felt I felt it needed a special sign off. Which is odd because I used to never even want kids and waited until I was 38 to have one!

    • Sonja says...

      Jennie – all of this is awesome! I am pinching “I look forward to your perspective.” Professional but sincere.

  101. Mims says...

    Peace out,
    or
    Keep on, keepin on.
    or
    groovy,

    Because, basically I am a hippy at heart.

    • ls says...

      I cannot read/hear the phrase “keep on, keepin’ on” without adding “life’s a garden, dig it” in my head! XD Thank you for that one, Joe Dirt.

  102. Amanda says...

    Best Regards mostly. Having 4 kids I email a lot of teachers, pto, coaches etc…
    Best if I’m pissed off.
    Respectfully if I’m apologizing.
    Sending love and light in sensitive situations.

  103. Rebecca says...

    For work emails, I sign off “Thanks!” if I’m in a good mood, but “Thanks,” if I’m pissed.

    • Claire says...

      I do this too!

    • Mel says...

      YES. 100%. Me too

    • Marisa says...

      Haha same!! I always wonder if the intent comes across.

    • Amanda Gwaltne says...

      Haha, this is totally me too. If you have inconvenienced me, you get less exclamation marks!!

    • Linsey says...

      Hahahahahaha!

    • Katy says...

      Same! And I feel so boring. Hoping to pick up a new one in this comments section.

      Thanks!

      Katy

    • Carol says...

      Haha! This is exactly what I do also.

  104. Monica says...

    I love this conversation. I usually sign off with blessings, kindly, or thanks. I have spent way too much time thinking about signing off certain emails! Glad to hear I’m not the only one. 😊

  105. Lindsay says...

    In the legal profession, we quite often use “Respectfully, _____” but I just saw a hilarious tweet that was in reference to a political scandal we’re having in Canada right now. The tweet said that “With Respect” or “Respectfully” is really just parliamentarian for “Listen here Mother Fucker” and I cannot unsee this and it is in fact entirely accurate.

    • Michelle says...

      Canadian, here, who respectfully agrees with you.

    • Kari says...

      Absolutely. The fine art of deciphering Canadians’ varying levels of politeness…

  106. Caitlin says...

    “An old crush once ended an email, ‘Yours and yours and yours,’ and I almost blacked out from the romance.”

    This is like, the funniest sentence I’ve read all week. I just cackled aloud at my desk. As if I need reminding why I refresh this site multiple times a day :)

  107. Heather Lawler Sears says...

    My two go to sign offs are

    “thanks for all you do” and “happy trails”

    With that said, I love the Cup of Jo blog!

    Thanks for all you do!
    Heather

  108. I’ve never understood the usage of ‘Cheers,’ as a sign off. In the UK, it means thank you, so is the equivalent of signing off “Thanks,”*(which I do do sometimes) – but it seems like ‘Cheers’ is being used when it doesn’t mean thank you! Can anyone please explain? Cheers!

    *not to be confused with “Cheers!” when you clink glasses.

    • Michelle says...

      I live in Canada but often sign my emails with cheers. I consider it a friendlier, less formal way of saying thank you. Maybe sometimes people just mean, “cheers for taking the time to read my email?”

    • Katherine says...

      This might help explain the British use of cheers…
      https://www.seattletimes.com/life/lifestyle/americans-are-barmy-over-britishisms/
      “I’m getting sick of my investment banking clients saying ‘cheers’ to me,” said Euan Rellie, a socially prominent British-born finance executive in New York. “Americans say ‘cheers’ like Dick Van Dyke in ‘Mary Poppins,’ with too much enthusiasm. It must be delivered laconically.”

    • Haylee says...

      Cheers is a relatively new one for me! I’m in the US, and I started using it after a particularly positive experience with a customer service representative from Outdoor Voices (haha…why not). It sounded light, informal, and friendly when she used it (a bit less stuffy than my previous default “kind regards”). I know you distinguished it from the “clinking glasses” cheers, but that’s more what it feels like to me, like a celebratory nod to the other person/acknowledgement of some sort. I never connected it back to its origin with the Brits or Aussies, as a sign-off it just felt like a different context with different meaning. That’s my explanation! I’m curious to see if that’s how others around the US interpret it? Otherwise I might need to go back to the old default :)

    • Mary says...

      It’s a very handy way of being casually polite and saying thanks. Mostly men use it with each other I find but certainly not exclusively. It’s not over the top gushy in any way. It’s also what people say to each other like in the article quoted from. I struggled to find the correct sign off for a male health practitioner for ages -I used ‘love, Mary’ a few times like I do with everyone I know well and like I would were he female in that position but it seemed a bit…inappropriate maybe?! So cheers came to the rescue and replaced it. Phew! 😅 haha.

    • Bailey says...

      I thought the ‘Cheers’ sign off was only a thing within my field (the wine industry), in which case I’ve always found it kind of charming given the cute double meaning! No idea anyone used it in the US otherwise haha

  109. elise says...

    I often use “Chow.” Why? I lived in Italy and cannot spell. And I love dogs. Oh, and I am silly.

    • Jennifer says...

      I love this, Elise!

    • Em says...

      omg the silliest! love it!

    • Laura C. says...

      This made me laugh! :D

    • annie says...

      my dad uses ‘chow’ to sign off and it always makes me laugh out loud a little. it’s just so funny and sweet.

  110. Caitlin says...

    I feel like it seems kind of blah, but I’m a “sincerely” gal, and I open with “I hope you are doing well” too, despite the claw back a few years ago from The Cut and others saying to stop using it because it’s meaningless… I’m a really sincere person and I genuinely hope my email recipients are doing well, and I genuinely send all of my emails with sincerity, even the boring ones (and I mean most of them are boring).

    • Maggie says...

      I so agree with you! If you hope your email recipient is well, say so and it’s up to them how they take it (:

  111. Katie says...

    My mother-in-law signs emails “love, MOM”. It’s a complete mystery why mom is in all capitals, but my husband and I both find it funny, and for years we’ve always signed emails and cards to each other with our names in all caps. So my emails and cards to him are always signed off with “I love you, KATIE”. For others, I often use “thanks” or “best” or “cheers”, all of which feel boring.

    My favorite story along these lines: an old boss used to always end his emails with “Thanks and please let me know if you have any questions.” It turns out he’d set up his own autocorrect shortcut, so that he would just type “tx”, and it would “autocorrect” into that full sentence! Still makes me laugh and strikes me as so brilliant at the same time.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      i love that brilliant shortcut! and so cute about your mom. my mom used to sign her text messages, which i thought was so freaking cute.

    • Robyn says...

      Ha Ha Joanna, my dad signs all his texts too. Once while I was with my brother he received a message from our dad that WASN’T SIGNED. We immediately noticed and couldn’t resist replying “sorry, who is this?”. To which he obviously replied “Dad. Dad.” It still makes me smile when I think about it. I am sure he has reliably signed every text since.

      Robyn.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Omg!! Dad. Dad. DYING. Love that so much.

    • mb says...

      Robyn’s story–two texting-thumbs up!

    • ls says...

      I do the same text replacement trick to avoid typing out my whole email address (and also to avoid accidentally misspelling it!) — I just type my initials and it autocorrects to the full email.

    • My dad signs his texts with “blessings, Larry.” Already so dad-like, but you haven’t lived until you’ve been stuck in a car with him and you realize that he voice-texts everything. Which means that he yells out loud “BLESSINGS COMMA LARRY!”

    • Brooke says...

      “BLESSINGS COMMA LARRY”!!

      Ginny, I’m crying laughing. That’s amazing. 🤣

  112. Jen says...

    A former colleague has this as his “Sent from my iPhone” signature:

    “All thumbs on my iPhone. Sorry for any typos or the dreaded autocratic.”

    It cracks me up!

    • joy says...

      A former colleague had this, “iPhone. iTypos. iApologize.”

  113. Claire says...

    It varies some according to who I am writing to, but “all best wishes” is one of my go-to’s. If it’s a friend then “love you, dear one” or something fun along those lines.
    And I have this quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson as part of my signature. I often forget it’s on there, but I’ve heard from recipients that they appreciate it, and often they tell me it was just the thing they needed to read.
    ” Finish every day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities crept in. Forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; you should begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense. “

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      what a GREAT quote.

    • Britt says...

      Love that quote! Thank you for sharing.

    • Kim says...

      Claire, that would have been a gift to receive the other day, after I sent an email to the wrong person and only found the undo button seconds after the undo period had expired!

      After experimenting with many closing phrases/words that didn’t feel like me, I finally landed on “Enjoy your day” accompanied by a smiley face for my work emails. I use it as a friendly whisper that no matter how your day is going, you can still (barring extreme circumstances) choose to find something about it to enjoy and no one can take that away from you. But if you’ve made me mad, all you get is “Thanks.” :D

      Also, I simply *adore* the COJ comment community! I feel like I’m laughing with girlfriends while reading these threads and it’s one of my favorite treats throughout the week. If my day is ridiculous, I can escape here for some fresh air. Thank you for creating this!

  114. DM says...

    Currently living in Jamaica and I’ve seen very serious work emails signed off with an “One Love”. Yes!

    • Jennie says...

      Ok this I love!

    • Emily says...

      LOVE this!

    • Mary says...

      Cool! So cool! 😎

  115. Carrington says...

    Always use “Best!”
    Because that’s true. Whether I’m requesting the best of someone or trying to give the best of myself.

  116. Fran says...

    Sometimes I write “Cheers,” but it feels kind of too hipster for me. “Best” if it’s a total stranger. “Fx” for family and friends, though it was pointed out to me once that this is medical shorthand for something that I can’t remember at the moment!

    • Cindy says...

      Fracture!

    • Fran says...

      Ah! Thank you! :)

  117. April says...

    My great aunt always used “Kind love,” to sign off on handwritten letters and correspondence. The gentleness of it always made my heart warm. ❤️

  118. Alison says...

    thanks! is my go to – but typically it is work related. I HATE when people sign Best, it feels so odd to me! like – where is the rest of it? Personal notes I either do love (hand written), a heart, xo, or love you!

    • Catherine says...

      Oh my gosh, YES! Best sounds so rude to me, for some reason. It just leaves a bad taste in my mouth, ha ha.

    • meg says...

      I’m a thanks! person, too. My coworker signs her emails “all best” which I just find so curt that it loses any warmth, makes me cringe. All best what? Is it too hard to type “all the best”?

    • my sign offs are exactly the same! although, sometimes with work emails, “thanks” doesn’t fit (I’m not always thanking them for anything!) but nothing else feels right. occasionally, its just “stacy”. I also don’t understand “best”… best what?? haha

    • Mary says...

      I’ve only seen best a couple of times but always wondered best what too! It seems curt and lazy to me. Best wishes is lovely if that’s what it’s short for though. I love those heart emojis too and use one even when I’ve said love in a personal/casual mail.

  119. laura says...

    When reading “xoxo,” I can’t help but read it in Kristen Bell’s voice, and think, “xoxo, Gossip Girl.”

    • Hillary says...

      Same – can’t help it!

    • Katie H says...

      Ditto!

    • ana says...

      same – everytime!!

  120. Respectfully: when it’s a serious matter to someone who is senior to me.

    Best: a more formal email to a peer.

    Thanks/Thank you: in everyday work emails.

    Sending light and love: when someone has expressed that they are going through a difficult time.

    I stopped doing the whole dash and name, “-Colleen” unless I’ve said thank you already in the body of the email or letter. I’ve read that it can be taken the wrong way.

    XO: to family and friends.

    • Kari says...

      I also use “Sending light and love” when giving condolences or offering support! I think it’s a really sweet, sincere little phrase.

  121. Eileen says...

    My go-tos are “Thanks, Eileen” for work, “E.” for personal, and “Much love, E.” for close friends and family.

  122. Franny says...

    To friends and family I always write xo (or xoxo if I’m feeling particularly lovey), but after my name I do the same thing on letters/thank you notes.

    For professional emails I have levels: best, all best, all my best, and finally, with best wishes. Usually things start at best and it goes up from there. Occasionally, I’ll switch things up and try thanks! Or “with my thanks,” but that is on the rare side.

  123. i also used to sign my letters “love + other indoor sports” and i had NO IDEA WHAT IT MEANT.

    now, if i’m inclined, i write “love + sunshine”. otherwise, i write kthxbyeeeeee or something equally obnoxious.

    for work, it’s “Thanks and have a great day.”

  124. Jill says...

    You’re just such a good writer. How can a tiny piece on email signatures make me laugh? XOXO

    • had the same thought!
      xx

  125. Beth says...

    My boss texted me a happy birthday message this week and I wrote back “thank you! xoxo” as a total reflex since I had been texting that back to friends all day. An hour later I was driving and suddenly panicked that maybe saying “hugs and kisses” to your boss is really weird! It sounds like it’s more normal than I realized – thank you for relieving my anxiety!

  126. Taylor says...

    I’m a fed with a gender neutral name and have found (kinda as a bummer) that I’m taken more seriously when I lean into “less nice” e-mailing.

    I end all my e-mails with “v/r”

    V/r,

    Taylor

    • Genevieve says...

      But what does “V/r” mean?

  127. Melanie says...

    Absolutely cannot stand when Americans sign off “cheers” – it’s not something they normally say in conversation and just seems like they’re trying so hard to be British!

    • Susan says...

      I always took it that Americans use “cheers” in emails as a generic best wishes send-off only for emails, whereas British use it more in speech for “thanks.”

    • t says...

      that’s funny. I always think when Americans are doing this they mean american cheers (like a toast or saying bottoms up) and not the British goodbye or thank you?

  128. Rachel Mcdonald says...

    I was talking about this with my students (who are professionals in a grad program) and someone complained they don’t like “Best” – one of my students replied that she loves seeing “Best” next to her name, and thinks of it like “Best Bridget!” not “Best, Bridget” – I love that way of thinking about it in a work context!

  129. At work, I always say “Thanks, Lisa” even if I’m not really thanking them for anything… I will sometimes use Kind Regards. I work in finance which is such a formal, male-dominated industry so we stick with very boring sign offs!

    Outside of work, my sign-off varies. I rarely write emails anymore but when I do, it’s usually to a friend or family member and I usually close with “love, Lisa”.

    A friend and I had a debate over the use of “yours.” She didn’t think it was as meaningful as “love” but I thought it was equally intimate!

  130. I almost always sign off “Cheers,” but sometimes say “take care” which is what my dad says–in real life. The part about sounding rude made me laugh, because that’s how I feel about not using lots of exclamation points. Which I used to hate! Now it feels so mean if I’m not effusively expressing everything. Haha.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      “take care” is such a sweet one.

    • Jessica says...

      I’m a fan saying and writing take care too, although it always makes me think of Seinfeld’s bit about “take care”….
      https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=6oMYcurEXtE

    • Ali says...

      I once got dumped via text with a “take care”. Brutal! haha.

  131. mb says...

    Oh, and a close cousin to this topic: quotes in the email signature. “Be the change you want to see in the world” takes on a new level of triteness in an email about how the office’s color printer should not be used to make copies.

    • Neen says...

      Hahaha – – so true! Although I’m not into the email signature quotes…it reminds me of AIM away messages from the AOL days.

  132. Louisa says...

    My husband and I always sign emails to each other as if we’re talking for our dog. I don’t know when or how this started – but our dog is now 14 1/2, so I’m guessing it’s been about 14 years.

    I ruff you,
    Louisa.

  133. Meredith says...

    My college roommate always does, “Kindest regards,” which I really like but don’t think I could pull off. At work I find myself defaulting to “Thanks” which isn’t great—-I’ll use it even when I’m the one doing the favor!

  134. Natasha says...

    This is a constant topic for debate between me and my husband!! He always signs off as “Best,” and I always say that seems so short and almost rude! And “best” what?” Best day? Best regards? Best slap in the face?? Way too sassy for my tastes.

    I sign everything with either “Kindly” or “Kind Regards” in professional emails and “Hugs” in my emails to friends. I think Hugs is also awesome when you want to say “Love” but don’t know if you’re there yet in the relationship.

  135. mb says...

    Ahh! I love this topic because I had a hard time landing on mine. I tried a few but for the past four or so years I have signed off with a “Best,”– I want it to be like an informal “best regards, best wishes, best everything that you want to have implied within this email!” It retains a professional demeanor and distance (which is critical in my work with college-aged students, I don’t want to come off as a pal).
    For some reason “Cheers,” really pisses me off. In my head “Cheers,” evokes the image of an overly enthusiastic morning person. You know the ones…those people who delight in pre-8:30 am conversations and jokes as if I can be “cheered” into waking up.

    • Ahahaha. I do “Cheers” but be assured I am not an overly enthusiastic morning person. I promise.

    • KW says...

      Dear everyone,

      Unless you are from the UK or AU, please stop using “Cheers” as your sign off.

      Kind regards,
      Me

  136. Regina says...

    The “yours and yours and yours” just gave me a bit of a shiver, how romantic! I will say I really need to work on my signoff now. I’ve been using xoxo for a while, thinking I’m gossip girl, but now I’ve been demoted to Texan aunt which is definitely not what I’m going for!

    • Emily L says...

      I am decidedly NOT romantic, so “yours and yours and yours” gives me a shiver, but in the opposite way! If a BF had said that in an email, I probably would have run away in fear and passive-aggressively ignored my way out of ending that relationship like a real adult.

  137. Bobbi says...

    I stick with “All the best,”

    • Cole says...

      Same! For some reason just writing ‘best’ looks so cold to me.

  138. Katie says...

    So interesting! I sign almost every single email with “Thanks!” or “Thanks,” depending on the overall tone of the email and who it’s being sent to. I also begin with either “Hi ___,” or just their name. Now that I think about it, I even email my mom that way!

    I am in the business field, and that’s been my experience of how most in this field communicate via email.

    • KW says...

      I follow this exact formula. I start just about every email with Hi ___, and close with Thanks! or Thanks, depending on how much I like them. Ha! If I end up in a multi-email chain with someone, I stop including the hi or thanks to keep from sounding like a robot.

      I work closely with another woman in my office (my boss) and we are copied on lots of emails together, so many people start emails to us with “Hi ladies” which I really hate. I don’t know why it bothers me, but blech.

      The majority of my work day is spent on email communicating with a variety of clients and I feel like most people these days just open an email with the recipient’s first name and close with their name. No extra fluff.

      In a semi-related sidenote, I read an article a few years ago about how often women use the word “just” in emails, particularly in professional settings. It’s something like 10 times as often as men. Women say things like “I just wanted to ask…” or “just checking” to soften their tone and not come off as demanding or aggressive in the workplace. Ever since I read that article, I go back through every important email before hitting send and remove a “just” or two. It’s my version of feminism in the workplace!

    • Rachel says...

      Ditto on the “thanks!” or “thanks,” depending on how chipper I want to sound (and how much I like them). And to KW below, YES! I also try to go back and delete a “just” or two. I must’ve read the same thing you did, but now when I see “I’m just following up on…” it reads as totally undermining!

    • Rebecca says...

      KW – I read that same article and ever since have gone out of my way to remove ‘just’ from my emails and texts. I agree the ‘hey ladies’ seems wrong.
      In general I start all emails with Hi and sign off either thanks, many thanks, or kind regards. If it’s friends then just xxx

  139. Ellie says...

    This is one of my favorite topics! Haha. I am always fascinated by people’s email signoffs. For some reason in my industry (publishing) a very common one is “Yours,” which I find SO intimate! “Yours”?? I am not Yours! I am mine! I refuse to use it. My favorite one (that I don’t think I can pull off) is “anon,” which a very wise old friend of my dad’s used to use. I stick with the very simple “My best,” at work, and “xo E” for personal.

    • mb says...

      I have a work colleague that signs off to everyone as “Your” not even “Yours”–I always feel like I am on some one-sided and unwarranted intimate friendship level with him when I read that.

  140. Amanda says...

    I started a new job last fall and adopted our CEO’s sign off: “with gratitude”. It feels more personal than the standard “thank you” or “thanks” and helps me remember that I am grateful for my job, my colleagues and our clients.

    With gratitude,
    Amanda

    • Jorden says...

      Oh this is good. I may steal this.

    • Cherie says...

      I have never agonized about this until this post. I like; with gratitude, the best and will adopt it right now.

  141. Maggie says...

    I sign off with:
    Thanks,
    Maggie

    I work in government, so anything beyond “best” “yours” or “sincerely” is generally considered … strange? I have a constituant who’s signature is “tootles!” and while I think that its ridiculous, it definitely brings a simle to my face each time I read it.

  142. Linds says...

    Always simply: Best, Lindsay

    My favorite college professor signed her messages that way, and I love that I can close an email and send someone positive wishes with a single word.

  143. Alice says...

    I have agonised over this so much that I now just write ‘A’. Like I can’t even be bothered, when in fact I am over bothered.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      “Like I can’t even be bothered, when in fact I am over bothered.”
      = hahaha that’s basically the story of life.

    • Neen says...

      Over-bothered…yes! This is how I’ve started signing my emails, too. I feel like it denotes some friendliness and familiarity?

    • Haylee says...

      Hahaha I relate to this so much. I might need to go this route to save some agonizing about all the interpretations out there.

    • Alison says...

      SAME. I just use my initials “-AM” as my final sign off. I have a formal signature saved in my email for when I’m sending work emails outside of company/to someone new. If I’m on an email chain where I keep sending notes back and forth with the person, it just seems so impersonal to use this auto-saved thing, and really it’s unnecessary to thank you for the third time in one day for working on whatever this message is about with me. Let me worry about other more important things! Man.

      For personal/family emails, I rarely sign my name. You know me. Clearly. Especially my husband. We had bumped into each other at an out of town concert while not dating and not staying in touch for several years. I sent him an email the day after titled “Fong’s Pizza” in reference to a restaurant in Des Moines he should visit on his way home. I definitely didn’t include any type of signature or my name in the message! We’ve responded to the same email chain (still titled Fong’s Pizza, ha!) ever since 2015, through long distance dating, moving in together, marriage, and now daily life. Neither of us have ever signed our names to the chain, despite over 3,000 responses back and forth. It’s become a long love letter and diary of our life all in one. Signing my name to every one of these messages would seem so impersonal! I like the idea that we are always just picking up where we left off and carrying on a long, never ending conversation with one another.

  144. Lately, I’ve been signing off my emails “Sincerely, Darcy.” For me it strikes the perfect balance of not too affectionate (“Love, Darcy”) or too stiff (“Best, Darcy”).

    • Sara says...

      I think that sounds like it should be the title of your memoir. :D

  145. kari says...

    An old boss used to sign off with “Warmly,” which I still find to be the perfect balance of, well, warmth, and elegance. Affectionate and personal enough for someone dear to you, professional enough to use in an office setting. It’s become my go-to.

    • Erin says...

      I use warmly. I’m in a client-facing role so I always start with it and then if the chain continues and continues sometimes I’ll switch to “thanks,” “thanks so much,” or just my name.

      But I like “warmly” for the initial contact.

    • Mary says...

      I use kind regards formally but I like this ‘warmly’ of yours. I might steal it! Thanks! Haha.

  146. Tereza says...

    I work in a research lab, and it seems that the academic sign off is “cheers”. Whenever my supervisor writes “Best,” I secretly wonder if she’s mad at me. Wahen someone wrote “Best” in an email thread organizing an event between friends, I really did…

  147. Ooh, this is a good one. I’ve been thinking about it lately because I often just use “Thanks,” but sometimes that doesn’t work! In my newsletter I’ve been doing “Cheers” or “Peace.” My spiritual director signs off “Warmly” which I like. I’ve worked in the Christian world (mostly higher ed) for a long time, and I’ve worked at plenty of places where “Blessings” is a common sign-off, but it makes me cringe. I might steal David’s “All good things”!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      hahahahahaah that is so good!!!

    • Nade says...

      as I’m non native English speaker I’ve been always intrigued if these interpretations are actually true :)

    • Claire says...

      This is excellent! Thanks for sharing it!

    • Franny says...

      Wow that is hilarious!