plastic

noun
plas·​tic | \ ˈpla-stik How to pronounce plastic (audio) \

Definition of plastic

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a plastic substance specifically : any of numerous organic synthetic or processed materials that are mostly thermoplastic or thermosetting polymers of high molecular weight and that can be made into objects, films, or filaments
2 : credit cards used for payment

called also plastic money

plastic

adjective

Definition of plastic (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : made or consisting of a plastic
2 : having a quality suggestive of mass-produced plastic goods especially : artificial sense 3 plastic smiles
3a : capable of being molded or modeled plastic clay
b : capable of adapting to varying conditions : pliable ecologically plastic animals
4 : capable of being deformed continuously and permanently in any direction without rupture
5 : relating to, characterized by, or exhibiting neural plasticity
6 : of, relating to, or involving plastic surgery
7 : formative, creative plastic forces in nature

Definition of -plastic (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : developing : forming thromboplastic
2 : of or relating to (something designated by a term ending in -plasm, -plast, -plasty, or -plasy) homoplastic neoplastic

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Other Words from plastic

Noun

plasticky \ ˈpla-​sti-​kē How to pronounce plasticky (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for plastic

Synonyms: Adjective

malleable, moldable, shapable (or shapeable), waxy

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Choose the Right Synonym for plastic

Adjective

plastic, pliable, pliant, ductile, malleable, adaptable mean susceptible of being modified in form or nature. plastic applies to substances soft enough to be molded yet capable of hardening into the desired fixed form. plastic materials allow the sculptor greater freedom pliable suggests something easily bent, folded, twisted, or manipulated. pliable rubber tubing pliant may stress flexibility and sometimes connote springiness. an athletic shoe with a pliant sole ductile applies to what can be drawn out or extended with ease. ductile metals such as copper malleable applies to what may be pressed or beaten into shape. the malleable properties of gold adaptable implies the capability of being easily modified to suit other conditions, needs, or uses. computer hardware that is adaptable

Examples of plastic in a Sentence

Noun

The toy was made of plastic. a company that manufactures plastics She used plastic to pay for her new computer.

Adjective

Silly Putty is famous for being very plastic. there's usually a plastic cordiality at these corporate events
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

After dozens of residents spoke in support of banning plastic bags in Glastonbury supermarkets and other stores, the Town Council voted to limit the bags that are six mils in thickness from retail stores. Steve Smith, courant.com, "Glastonbury Bans Plastic Bags," 14 June 2019 Oregon Salem: The state could become the latest in the nation to prohibit single-use plastic shopping bags. USA TODAY, "Pride pickup, sphinx on move, Tony Stark’s cabin: News from around our 50 states," 13 June 2019 In 2014, the council voted 11-1 to prohibit retailers from distributing plastic bags. Scott Dance, baltimoresun.com, "Baltimore Councilman to propose ban on plastic bags, checkout bag surcharge at city retailers," 13 June 2019 Over 1 million plastic bags are used every minute, most of which are filled once, then discarded. Dave Quinn, PEOPLE.com, "Supermarket 'Shames' Customers Who Don't Bring Reusable Bags by Offering Embarrassing Plastic Ones," 12 June 2019 Alexander’s girls spin in sweaty, frenzied laps, chasing each other and flying plastic bags behind them like parachutes. John Gastaldo, National Geographic, "Navigating the booming cost of urban life," 12 June 2019 House Bill 242 would prohibit local governments from banning or imposing a tax or fee on the use of plastic bags. Emily Bamforth, cleveland.com, "Greater Cleveland Partnership supports state bill which would repeal Cuyahoga County bag ban," 11 June 2019 New this year, Rubio’s is giving out reusable lunch bag totes as a replacement to using paper or plastic bags. Jessica Yadegaran, The Mercury News, "Freebie Monday: Rubios giving out free insulated lunch bags," 3 June 2019 New York became the second state to pass a ban on single-use plastic bags as others consider making the move. Tawnell D. Hobbs, WSJ, "New York Passes a Plastic-Bag Ban," 1 Apr. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The Senate voted 17-12 to prohibit grocery stores and restaurants from providing plastic checkout bags. USA TODAY, "Pride pickup, sphinx on move, Tony Stark’s cabin: News from around our 50 states," 13 June 2019 Bring a white, cotton T-shirt and a plastic bag and make your very own colorful creation to take home. courant.com, "Community News For The Windsor Locks Edition," 12 June 2019 Past efforts focused on single products, like bans on plastic shopping bags and straws. Dustin Gardiner, SFChronicle.com, "California takes on an ocean of plastic waste, considers crackdown on industry," 12 June 2019 Authorities say the baby was found wrapped in a plastic bag shortly before noon Tuesday in the city of Stockton, south of Sacramento. Fox News, "Newborn boy rescued from Northern California dumpster," 12 June 2019 California was the first state to prohibit plastic bags with New York state following suit earlier this year. oregonlive.com, "Oregon on its way to banning plastic bags," 11 June 2019 Flimsy plastic bags, the kind commonly used to tote groceries, are gumming up Orange County’s recycling effort. Stephen Hudak, orlandosentinel.com, "Recycling plastic grocery bags? It’s ‘a waste of effort,’ Orange County says," 11 June 2019 Spread between two soft pieces of white bread and packaged in a green plastic bag, Augusta National’s famous pimento cheese sandwich is almost as legendary as the golf tournament that birthed it. Meghan Overdeep, Southern Living, "Alert: The Masters’ Famous Pimento Cheese is Now Available to Order Nationwide," 10 June 2019 Noemi Hernandez-Madrigal, 18, is suspected of having three separate plastic zip-lock bags containing more than 3,200 pills, described as M30 pills, showing the presence of fentanyl, police said. Molly Hudson, azcentral, "3 Arizona students arrested after M30 Fentanyl pills were seized at San Luis high school," 6 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'plastic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of plastic

Noun

1803, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1624, in the meaning defined at sense 7

History and Etymology for plastic

Adjective

Latin plasticus of molding, from Greek plastikos, from plassein to mold, form

Adjective combining form

Greek -plastikos, from plassein

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Statistics for plastic

Last Updated

17 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for plastic

The first known use of plastic was in 1624

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More Definitions for plastic

plastic

noun

English Language Learners Definition of plastic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a light, strong substance that can be made into different shapes and that is used for making many common products
informal : a credit card when used for payment

plastic

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of plastic (Entry 2 of 2)

: made or consisting of plastic
informal : not real or sincere
technical : capable of being made into different shapes

plastic

adjective
plas·​tic | \ ˈpla-stik How to pronounce plastic (audio) \

Kids Definition of plastic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : made of plastic plastic bags a plastic bucket
2 : capable of being molded or modeled plastic clay

plastic

noun

Kids Definition of plastic (Entry 2 of 2)

: any of various manufactured materials that can be molded into objects or formed into films or fibers

plastic

adjective
plas·​tic | \ ˈplas-tik How to pronounce plastic (audio) \

Medical Definition of plastic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : made or consisting of a plastic
2 : capable of being deformed continuously and permanently in any direction without breaking or tearing
3a : capable of growth, repair, or differentiation a plastic tissue
b : relating to, characterized by, or exhibiting neural plasticity
4 : of, relating to, or involving plastic surgery plastic repair

plastic

noun

Medical Definition of plastic (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a plastic substance specifically : any of numerous organic synthetic or processed materials that are mostly thermoplastic or thermosetting polymers of high molecular weight and that can be made into objects, films, or filaments
2 : an object made of plastic

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