10 Different Ways to Say “Bless You” When Someone Sneezes

Are you trying to figure out the best way to respond after someone sneezes?

Perhaps you want to say “bless you,” but you’re worried about the religious connotations behind it.

Don’t worry; this article is here to help!

We’ll explain other ways to say “bless you” to help you out!

Can You Say “Bless You” When Someone Sneezes?

You can say “bless you” when someone sneezes. It is generally the default response after someone sneezes, and most people (even non-religious people) will thank you for it.

The original phrase had religious connections, as it was “God bless you.” However, “God” has since been dropped, and most people simply say “bless you” after a sneeze.

It is rude not to say it after someone sneezes. So, you should make an effort to use it when you hear someone sneeze.

You do not need to say it after a cough, though. It’s a common misconception, but it’s not necessary after a cough.

Here’s an example showing you when it might work:

Bless you, Michael! That was quite a hefty sneeze.

Oh, bless you! I hope you don’t have anything contagious.


  • It’s polite and caring.
  • It’s a social convention to use it after a sneeze.


  • It can be deemed as religious, which wouldn’t work well with non-religious speakers.
  • It’s a bit repetitive.

While “bless you” is certainly a good phrase after a sneeze, that doesn’t mean it’s your only choice.

Keep reading to learn alternatives to “bless you” that’ll help you to mix things up the next time someone sneezes.

Alternatively, if you want to learn what to say for a blessing, you can refer to this article: 9 Other Ways to Say “God Bless You”

What to Say Instead of “Bless You”

  • Gesundheit!
  • Blessings!
  • Salud!
  • To your health!
  • Bless you, and stay well!
  • God bless!
  • Take care!
  • Be well!
  • Blessings upon you!
  • May you be safe and healthy!

1. Gesundheit!

There are a few funny things to say instead of “bless you” when someone sneezes. One of the more common funny responses is “gesundheit.”

Generally, “gesundheit” is funny but sincere. People say it to make a joke, but they also mean it and want to wish you well after you sneeze.

So, as far as synonyms go, this funny option is one of your best bets! It’s highly effective and shows you care about the sneezing person.

You should also refer to these examples to learn more about it:

Gesundheit! I wish my sneezes could be as powerful as that! That almost sounded like it hurt.

Oh, gesundheit! I’m sure it’s nothing, but you really should watch it with those sneezes, especially if they get worse.

2. Blessings!

When trying to figure out what to say instead of “bless you,” you need not look further than “blessings!”

This one-word exclamation helps to keep things sincere and caring when wishing someone well.

It still has some religious connections. So, it might be best to avoid using it when a non-religious person sneezes.

Nevertheless, it’s still an interesting choice and works well to show you wish someone well.

Feel free to review these examples if you’re still unsure:

Blessings, my friend! That sounds like a bad one. I’ve got my fingers crossed that it passes quite soon.

Blessings to you! It’s such a shame that you’re coming down with something at a time like this.

3. Salud!

Another great word to use after someone sneezes is “salud!” This is a Spanish phrase meaning “to your health.”

It’s similar to using “gesundheit” (which is German), and it shows that you care about someone’s well-being.

We recommend using it as a fun and light-hearted alternative. It’s a great way to make someone laugh after they sneeze.

Also, we recommend checking out the following samples:

Salud! I learned that once in Spanish and have used it ever since when someone sneezes.

Oh, salud! I’m so sorry. I hope you’re not coming down with anything too serious.

4. To Your Health!

You can also use “to your health!” as an exclamation after someone sneezes.

Interestingly, we’ve already covered this phrase twice in this article. However, both times, the phrase has been in another language (“gesundheit” and “salud”).

So, it’s worth using it in English to wish someone well. It’s positive and friendly and shows that you hope someone feels better after sneezing!

Here are some great examples to show you more about it if you’re still unsure:

To your health! It’s never nice to have a sneeze catch you off guard. That’s for sure!

To your health! I’m sure this was a one-off, but you can still never be too safe.

5. Bless You, and Stay Well!

You can also use an extension for “bless you” to show that you care about someone.

“Bless you, and stay well!” is an excellent thing to say after someone sneezes.

It’s polite and positive. It also shows that you’re taking an interest in someone’s well-being, as you want them to “stay well.”

After all, sneezing can sometimes mean that someone is coming down with a sickness. So, using this phrase shows that you hope that isn’t the case and they don’t need medical aid.

We also recommend reviewing these examples:

Bless you, and stay well! You certainly won’t want to go and catch a cold now! It’s a bad time for it.

Bless you, and stay well, Jade. I’m so sorry I can’t do more, but I need to head home.

6. God Bless!

While “bless you” has removed most of the religious connotations surrounding it, that doesn’t mean you’re not allowed to use “God bless!” after someone sneezes.

However, we only recommend using it on religious people. It’s best to avoid mentioning “God” in your blessing after someone sneezes if they’re not religious.

After all, “God bless!” doesn’t hold as much weight as it used to. Therefore, most non-religious speakers won’t be very impressed with it.

Also, these examples should help you to understand more:

God bless! I wish there was something I could do to take that away. It sounded quite violent.

God bless! What a remarkable sneeze that was! I’m honestly quite impressed you didn’t lose an eye.

7. Take Care!

Another great phrase to use after someone sneezes is “take care!”

It’s a great way to let someone know you care about their health. It suggests that you want them to look after themselves and hope that the sneeze doesn’t mean anything negative.

Generally, this is a more fun and friendly way to wish someone well after they sneeze.

We also recommend checking out the following examples:

Take care! I’m not sure whether you’re coming down with something, but you need to be careful.

Oh, wow! Take care with that sneeze! You’ll wake the whole house up if you’re not careful.

8. Be Well!

You may also use “be well!” instead of “bless you.” It’s a great phrase that shows you hope for the best after someone sneezes.

Generally, it shows that you want someone to recover from whatever ails them. This is a fun and light-hearted way to show that you support them and want them to feel good.

If you’re still unsure, check out these examples:

Be well! The last thing you want right now is to get sick! You’ve got a few important dates coming up.

Be well, Adam! I hope that isn’t anything serious, and I definitely don’t want to catch it!

9. Blessings Upon You!

Going back to slightly more religious connotations, you can use “blessings upon you!” after someone sneezes.

Again, it’s best to use this when speaking to a religious person. Generally, non-religious people won’t find much value in this phrase after they sneeze.

However, it still shows that you want to wish someone well, which is the main reason why we bless people in the first place after a sneeze.

If you still want to see it in action, refer to the following:

Blessings upon you after that one! It sounds like you might be coming down with something.

Blessings upon you! I hope you’re doing well. I’m sure it was a one-off, but you really should be careful.

10. May You Be Safe and Healthy!

Finally, we recommend using “may you be safe and healthy!” It’s a great option that gives you a different way to say “bless you” after someone sneezes.

The implication is that when someone sneezes, they aren’t currently healthy. They might have simply had to sneeze, but they could also be coming down with something more serious.

So, using this phrase is kind and caring. It shows that you want to wish someone well and hope they stay in good health.

Feel free to refer to these examples to learn more about how it works:

May you be safe and healthy! That sounded like quite an intense sneeze. I hope everything is okay.

Oh, wow! May you be safe and healthy! Hopefully, you won’t have another one quite like that.