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Integrity vs. Sincerity: What's the Difference?

Edited by Harlon Moss || By Janet White || Updated on September 22, 2023
Integrity refers to the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles, while Sincerity is the absence of pretense, deceit, or hypocrisy in one's actions or words.

Key Differences

Integrity is a broad term that encompasses the virtues of honesty, ethics, and moral uprightness. It often implies that one's actions are guided by a set of core principles or values. On the other hand, Sincerity specifically focuses on the genuine nature of one's words or deeds, usually in the context of interpersonal relations. Sincerity is about being free from deceit or hypocrisy.
While both terms share the common element of honesty, Integrity extends further into one's character. Someone with integrity not only speaks truthfully but also behaves in a manner consistent with their values, even when it's difficult or unpopular. Sincerity, in contrast, doesn't necessarily imply a moral stance but stresses the truthful and straightforward expression of oneself.
Grammatically speaking, both Integrity and Sincerity are nouns. However, the former often sees use in more formal contexts like corporate values or philosophical discussions, while the latter is more common in everyday language, often used to describe simple, honest interactions between people.
In summary, while both Integrity and Sincerity are positive qualities relating to honesty, they apply to different aspects of human behavior. Integrity is a more comprehensive term that relates to one's overall character and moral standing. Sincerity is narrower in scope, dealing primarily with the absence of deceit or pretense in specific interactions or statements.

Comparison Chart


Moral uprightness and honesty
Genuine, truthful expression


Broad, overall character
Narrow, specific interactions

Moral Implication

Implies strong moral principles
Does not necessarily imply morality

Grammatical Role

Mostly used as a noun
Mostly used as a noun


More formal contexts
More common in everyday language

Integrity and Sincerity Definitions


His integrity was never in question.


Honesty in expression
His sincerity was palpable.


Consistency of values
She acted with integrity throughout her life.


Lack of deceit
I appreciated her sincerity in admitting the mistake.


Moral uprightness
She demonstrated her integrity by refusing to lie.


Absence of pretense
She spoke with refreshing sincerity.


The integrity of the structure was compromised.


Genuine feelings
His actions were driven by sincerity.


Integrity is one of his defining characteristics.


His sincerity is one of his most admirable qualities.


Steadfast adherence to a strict moral or ethical code
A leader of great integrity.


The quality or condition of being sincere; genuineness, honesty, and freedom from duplicity.


The state of being unimpaired; soundness
The building's integrity remained intact following the mild earthquake.


The quality or state of being sincere


The quality or condition of being whole or undivided; completeness
Replaced a lost book to restore the integrity of his collection.


The quality or state of being sincere; honesty of mind or intention; freedom from simulation, hypocrisy, disguise, or false pretense; sincereness.
I protest, in the sincerity of love.
Sincerity is a duty no less plain than important.


Steadfast adherence to a strict moral or ethical code.


An earnest and sincere feeling


The state of being wholesome; unimpaired


The quality of being open and truthful; not deceitful or hypocritical;
His sincerity inspired belief
They demanded some proof of my sincerity


The quality or condition of being complete; pure


A quality of naturalness and simplicity;
The simple sincerity of folk songs


(cryptography) With regards to data encryption, ensuring that information is not altered by unauthorized persons in a way that is not detectable by authorized users.


The trait of being serious;
A lack of solemnity is not necessarily a lack of seriousness


(aviation) The ability of systems to provide timely warnings to users when they should not be used for navigation.


Trustworthiness; keeping your word.


The state or quality of being entire or complete; wholeness; entireness; unbroken state; as, the integrity of an empire or territory.


Moral soundness; honesty; freedom from corrupting influence or motive; - used especially with reference to the fulfillment of contracts, the discharge of agencies, trusts, and the like; uprightness; rectitude.
The moral grandeur of independent integrity is the sublimest thing in nature.
Their sober zeal, integrity, and worth.


Unimpaired, unadulterated, or genuine state; entire correspondence with an original condition; purity.
Language continued long in its purity and integrity.


An unreduced or unbroken completeness or totality


Moral soundness


Is sincerity the same as honesty?

They are related but not identical. Sincerity focuses on the absence of deceit or pretense.

Is integrity a skill?

Integrity is more of a character trait than a skill.

Can integrity be taught?

While the basics can be taught, integrity is often developed through life experiences.

Can integrity apply to organizations?

Yes, an organization can be said to have integrity if it adheres to ethical standards.

Can you be sincere without integrity?

Yes, one can be sincere in specific instances without having overall integrity.

Does integrity imply morality?

Generally, yes. Integrity often involves adherence to ethical or moral principles.

Can sincerity be faked?

By definition, faked sincerity is not sincerity.

Can sincerity be a weakness?

In rare cases, excessive sincerity could be perceived as naivety.

Does sincerity apply to actions?

Yes, sincerity can refer to genuine actions as well as words.

Does integrity relate to reliability?

Yes, a person with integrity is often considered reliable.

Is integrity always ethical?

Integrity generally implies ethical behavior, although interpretations may vary.

Is integrity the same as honesty?

While related, integrity is broader and includes consistent moral principles.

Can you measure integrity?

Integrity is difficult to quantify but can be assessed through behavior over time.

What's the opposite of sincerity?

Insincerity or deceit would be the opposites of sincerity.

Is sincerity always positive?

Generally, yes, although sincerity without tact can sometimes be hurtful.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.

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