How to Write a Descriptive Essay: Outline, Topics, Sample

descriptive essay

If you clicked on this article, you are most probably wondering "what is a descriptive essay" and want to find out more about it, including descriptive essay examples. It might be because your instructor has recently assigned you descriptive writing. I say - think no more; we got you! After reading through our piece, you'll feel as confident as ever to embark on your descriptive essay writing.

Descriptive Essay Definition: What Is It?

First, let's delve into the descriptive essay definition to be able to paint a clear picture for the upcoming sections concerning how to write a descriptive essay. So, a descriptive essay describes a particular genre of writing that calls for the writers to explain specific objects, people, memories, events, places, or experiences. To create a mental image for the audience, descriptive essays appeal to all five senses to make the reading process truly an immersive experience. This is why the descriptive essay should be clear and focused with rich details and vivid language.

The finest descriptive essays are quite detailed. Use sensory information to make a lasting impression in your reader's mind. Keep in mind to stick to the descriptive essay format for your writing to be easily readable and understandable for the audience. Speaking of the format, we will explore more about it below!

Check out artice about process analysis essay and how to write a definition essay guide at EssayHub blog.

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How To Start A Descriptive Essay

Planning ahead is vital for a descriptive paper. Keep in mind what or who is needed to be described. What is the reason for writing this essay, and what quality or what are the key aspects of the topic that need more attention than others? For the sake of the descriptive essay itself, ensure that the paper has a general theme and an overall purpose. A message needs to be conveyed to readers, or else the essay will seem blotchy and scattered, and the readers will get lost in writing.

Nonetheless, the writing will lose its quality. So, therefore, check what sights, smells, and textures are important for the progression of the description. There might not be a need to splurge on all details. Background information or other such information should be kept to a minimum when it is not directly linked to the topic and serves no particular purpose.

While wondering how to start a descriptive essay, it is best to refer to a checklist that can help with organization and keep the momentum going.

Descriptive Essay Outline

A lengthy and tedious description essay will only confuse the readers if it is not properly organized. Therefore drafting an outline for the paper is paramount for its ease of understanding for the readers. This way, the essay will also become more engaging for the readers. So the writer should describe one thing at a time. For example, when describing a person, it is perfectly alright to start with their appearance. The freckles on their face, bushy eyebrows, and hazel-colored eyes behind old and broken spectacles. You can then move on to describing their deep voice, vocabulary, and accolades and achievements in the field of medicine, but it would be wrong to again go back to describing the size of their nose or their deep, dark skin tone.

Proofread, it is best to follow a general outline or framework. The paper should start with an intriguing introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion.

5 senses


Developing a thesis statement is the next step after coming up with the topic. This one concept will be present repeatedly throughout your article. It outlines the essay's goal and specifies how the material will be presented in the entire essay. There should be a hook sentence in the introductory paragraph that summarizes the essay and completely engages the reader. You should do so by presenting thorough sensory details and figurative language that support your viewpoint. Don't forget to use clear and concise language. This implies that words are carefully picked, paying particular attention to their applicability to the subject of your intended description. Also, give a brief and relevant background description so the readers can easily relate to the writing.

Body Paragraphs

The body paragraphs must carry forward the description of the topic. This can proceed in three ways.

If you are looking to describe a particular place, then you can do so in a spatial order which intends to give its audience a camera like a movie that moves along to describe the place. But, again, ensure that you put in factual details to avoid empty spaces or waste sentences.

The chronological method can be employed if the essay is about an event or a series of events. The description moves from scene to scene, from what happened in the beginning, to describing what happened at the very end. The ascent of the order of time is key here.

Thirdly if looking for a generic approach that can be used for practically any topic or subject, the paper can proceed in a climatic order that places value on the importance of particular details. This means that the essay goes on from describing items arranged in a manner of less importance to the most. This is so that the best can be saved for the last and readers leave with a powerful impression in their minds.


Have your conclusion tie up the entire paper. Therefore make sure to give a purpose and let the readers know why they read the descriptive essay in the first place and what they got out of it. Next, tell them how the description affects them and how it is relevant. Apart from this, explain the significance of your most important terms and details of the essay. Again, let them know why they were there and what impact these essential details created. After this, end with a "one hell" of a statement so that the message resonates with the audience and gives them food for thought.

Descriptive Essay Topics

While there can be many descriptive essay topics that you can simply start writing about, below are some of the best example topics prepared by our professional writers from write my essays service that you can refer to for inspiration:



  • Describe your favorite place that you grew up going to.
  • Describe the place you are in at this particular moment.
  • Describe your perfect world.


  • Describe your best friend.
  • Describe yourself.
  • Describe your idol.


  • Describe your most prized possession.
  • Describe that one thing you would take to a deserted island.
  • Describe your perfect evening outfit.


  • Describe your most cherished memory.
  • Describe your birthday party.
  • Describe your most memorable vacation.

Descriptive Essay Sample

This is a sample descriptive essay paragraph about a mysterious place:

The deeper we ventured, the more spellbinding, profound and elaborate it became. The foliage grew thicker with each of our steps. The umber brown color of the sky high and primitive trees stood unwavering above us. The smell of the forest seemed fresh and organic with a flower bed full of blossoming red roses just beside us. But even these roses could not bring us any joy. We decided to move on, to follow a deep dark shadow that had led us into this canopy of trees, the murky and glutinous mud on the mossy mattress floor. We knew that we had to get out before nightfall fo that night would be the darkest and the deepest night we would ever see – a night that not even the stars which were like sliver asters, bright, radiant and shimmering could light up this dark and gloomy forest.

Tips And Tricks

Use symbols to represent concepts or feelings - Some words cause us to think of a specific sense or emotion. Similar to how particular colors are linked to concepts and feelings. Use descriptive language and these strategies to establish a tone or setting for your essays.

Be organized - a successful presentation of ideas in your writings depends on it. The readers of your writings will be able to easily follow them if you develop them utilizing a logical framework. Examine samples of well-written descriptive essays to learn how to create a sound topic framework.

Finally, never forget to proofread your writing or turn to an essay writer online for assistance. This can eliminate any chances of careless mistakes that only reduce the quality of the essay and make it seem unprofessional.

Need A Little Help?

It is perfectly alright if you need a little extra hand from a pro descriptive essay writer. EssayHub, an professional essay writing services, would be more than happy to craft an ideal descriptive essay for you in no time! You can order essay and we will help you with your any assignment.

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