You type an email for the first time to an important person and you want to know how you should sign off on that email in an appropriate way.
Best or Bests
Can you say best or bests when concluding the email? The truth is bests is not a correct word. We would say best, as in, “best regards.” We can’t say “bests regards.”
When signing off the email with best, we can say:
All The Best (formal)
Best Regards (formal)
Best Wishes (formal)
Some people like to shorten “best wishes” or “best regards” to best. Using the term best alone implies something without really saying what it is. Best may be seen as too impersonal and flippant for formal emails.
This is the third-person present for the verb “best.”
The verb “best” means to outwit or outdo someone. You do better than the others.
She bests the competitors in the chess game.
They were bested (beaten) by the other athletes in the race.
Bests is not correct in emails but may have been used when email and texting first started years ago. It is no longer in fashion, and I would recommend avoiding this term.
However, there may still be a regional or personal preference for using bests, but most English speakers do not use or even know this term for signing off emails.
Best of the Best
If you want to talk about the absolute greatest or best, you might say “the best of the best.”
The best of the best is an idiomatic expression. If the good or service is of the highest quality or if someone is an expert in their field, we might call them “the best of the best.”
The lawyers were highly-trained and the best of the best in the city of Dublin.
The seafood in this Michelin star restaurant is the best of the best.
Other Ways to End an Email
There are many ways to conclude an email.
We might end an email with regards, kind regards, warm regards, or best regards. Regards is one of the most common ways to end an email.
“Best regards” and “kind regards” are more formal.
You might want to use warm regards when talking to friends or family. Usually, you do not end a business email with “warm regards” unless you have met the people before and know them socially.
Sincerely or yours sincerely is commonly used when the author of the email knows the recipient’s name.
This should be reserved for very formal emails, such as job applications and formal business correspondence.
Yours Faithfully (formal)
Just like yours sincerely, yours faithfully is very formal and may be used for job applications of formal business correspondence.
It is used in emails and letters when the recipient is not known.
If you know the person very well, you might end the email with “cheers.”
This is very informal and more commonly used in Britain or Australia.
Cheers may be said when making a toast at dinner. It is a way of wishing others good times. It makes a friendly way to sign off an email.
As ever/ as always (informal)
Wishing that communications continue as they always have. It’s a reassuring way to end an email by saying that everything is good and there is nothing to worry about.
Thanks/ Thanks in advance
This expresses gratitude for something or can be used when you expect someone to do something for you.
This may come off as demanding, so be careful when using it formally.
I appreciate your input/help/feedback
This expresses gratitude for helping you out in some way.
Find more ways to end an email here.
Can you say the best of the bests?
No, we cannot say “the best of the bests.” The idiomatic expression is “the best of the best.”
Is best an appropriate sign-off?
Yes, best is an appropriate sign-off when communicating with colleagues, but it may be too impersonal for formal emails. If you feel that the email is too colloquial, you could say “Best regards” for the initial email.