30 Idioms About Science with Meaning and Examples

science idioms

Have you ever heard someone say, “It’s not rocket science” when they mean something is not very hard to understand? Or maybe you’ve heard the phrase, “reinventing the wheel,” used to describe doing something in a more complicated way when a simple way already exists. These phrases are called idioms, and they are a fun and interesting part of the English language. Idioms are groups of words whose meaning isn’t always obvious from the individual words, but they add color and imagination to our daily conversations.

In this article, we’re going to explore idioms about science. Science is all around us. It’s in the way our phones work, how the weather changes, and even in the food we eat. Sometimes, science can seem a bit tricky or hard to understand. That’s where science idioms come in! They help us connect big, complicated science ideas to things we already know and understand in our everyday lives. So, let’s start this adventure and discover the interesting world of science idioms together.

Table of Contents

Idioms for Science

Here are 30 English idioms about science, along with their meanings and examples in simple sentences:

“Nuclear option”

    • Meaning: The most extreme or drastic action possible.
    • Example: “Laying off staff is the nuclear option we want to avoid.”

“Splitting the atom”

    • Meaning: Working on something very intricate or detailed.
    • Example: “This puzzle is like splitting the atom.”

“Bright as a button”

    • Meaning: Very intelligent or quick-witted.
    • Example: “She’s as bright as a button, always acing her tests.”

“Under the microscope”

    • Meaning: Being closely examined or scrutinized.
    • Example: “Our project is under the microscope by the boss.”

“A drop in the ocean”

    • Meaning: A very small amount compared to what is needed or expected.
    • Example: “My contribution is just a drop in the ocean for this project.”


    • Meaning: Simple, basic, or obvious.
    • Example: “The solution was elementary once we discussed it.”


    • Meaning: Extremely important or significant.
    • Example: “The decision was atomic for our small business.”

“Eureka moment”

    • Meaning: A moment of sudden, brilliant discovery.
    • Example: “When I figured out the solution, it was a real eureka moment.”

“A chain reaction”

    • Meaning: A series of events, each caused by the previous one.
    • Example: “His resignation set off a chain reaction in the company.”

“Out of one’s element”

    • Meaning: Feeling uncomfortable or not in a usual situation.
    • Example: “I was out of my element at the dance party.”

“A litmus test”

    • Meaning: A method that helps to make a decision or form an opinion.
    • Example: “This interview is a litmus test for his suitability for the job.”

“On the same wavelength”

    • Meaning: Thinking in a similar way or understanding each other well.
    • Example: “We’re on the same wavelength; we always agree on business strategies.”

“A slippery slope”

    • Meaning: A situation that could lead to serious problems.
    • Example: “Skipping classes is a slippery slope to failing the course.”

“Quantum leap”

    • Meaning: A significant, revolutionary change or advance.
    • Example: “Smartphones were a quantum leap in technology.”

“Element of surprise”

    • Meaning: A surprising aspect or feature.
    • Example: “We used the element of surprise in our marketing campaign.”

“Reinvent the wheel”

    • Meaning: To waste time creating something that already exists.
    • Example: “Don’t reinvent the wheel; use the existing software.”

“A lightbulb moment”

    • Meaning: A sudden realization or idea.
    • Example: “I had a lightbulb moment about how to solve the problem.”

“In one’s element”

    • Meaning: In a situation where one is comfortable and performs well.
    • Example: “He’s in his element when working on car engines.”

“Blinded by science”

    • Meaning: Confused or bewildered by technical complexity.
    • Example: “I was completely blinded by science during the lecture.”

“Building blocks”

    • Meaning: Basic elements or fundamentals of something.
    • Example: “Good communication skills are the building blocks of a successful team.”

“It’s not exactly brain surgery”

    • Meaning: It’s not very complicated.
    • Example: “Don’t worry about making tea; it’s not exactly brain surgery.”

“Not rocket science”

    • Meaning: Not very complicated or difficult to understand.
    • Example: “Cooking pasta is not rocket science.”

“Pushing the envelope”

    • Meaning: To go beyond the usual limits; to innovate.
    • Example: “With this new model, we’re really pushing the envelope in design.”

“To have chemistry”

    • Meaning: To have a natural connection with someone.
    • Example: “We really have chemistry; we get along so well.”

“Carbon copy”

    • Meaning: Something or someone very similar to another.
    • Example: “He’s a carbon copy of his father.”

“Rocket science”

    • Meaning: Something very complex or difficult to understand.
    • Example: “Don’t worry, fixing a bike isn’t rocket science.”

“Back to the drawing board”

    • Meaning: To start something again from the beginning.
    • Example: “The plan failed; it’s back to the drawing board.”

“Down to a science”

    • Meaning: Perfectly understood or mastered.
    • Example: “She has her morning routine down to a science.”

“A gray area”

    • Meaning: Something unclear or not exactly defined.
    • Example: “The rules about remote work are a bit of a gray area.”

“In a vacuum”

    • Meaning: Isolated from others, without outside influence.
    • Example: “You can’t make decisions in a vacuum; consider the team’s opinions.”

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