acryl·​ic | \ ə-ˈkri-lik How to pronounce acrylic (audio) \

Definition of acrylic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of or relating to acrylic acid or its derivatives acrylic polymers
2 : made or consisting of an acrylic an acrylic window



Definition of acrylic (Entry 2 of 2)

b : a paint in which the vehicle is an acrylic resin
c : a painting done in an acrylic resin

Examples of acrylic in a Sentence


a painting done in acrylics

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Created in 2016, the installation includes acrylic pumpkins, LED lighting and black glass inside a mirrored room. Domenica Bongiovanni, Indianapolis Star, "5,000 pumpkins and a pumpkin-covered bridge: Newfields unveils Harvest festival details," 21 Feb. 2019 Wu selects dozens of wrinkled papers and individually pastes them flat onto the canvas, sealing each layer with acrylic gel before adding a new one. Laura Mallonee, WIRED, "You Can't Photoshop This Mountain," 29 July 2019 In the portrait of a corpse, acrylic paint achieves the gummy texture of gore. Eren Orbey, The New Yorker, "A Photographer’s Elaborate Transformations in His Childhood Bedroom," 18 July 2019 What to Know Before You Get Started It’s usually best to use acrylic fabric paint. Kelly Dawson, House Beautiful, "How to Choose the Best Fabric Paint for Your Project," 13 June 2019 Simon secured the snake with his tongs as Brown began to unload an arsenal of equipment from his backpack: scale, scissors, acrylic paint, pens, and several notebooks. James Mcwilliams, Outside Online, "The Town That Lives with Rattlesnakes," 10 June 2019 This requires affixing shoulder-length hair and a wavy beard made out of cotton and acrylic paint; donning a white robe and beret hat; and applying thick white makeup to his face, including his eye lids and lips. Claudia Kalb, National Geographic, "See where Leonardo da Vinci still walks the streets," 6 June 2019 Cedric Johnson created his complex, swirling pattern with colored pencils, markers, and acrylic paint, while Aurie Ramirez painted her flying unicorn with pastel watercolors. Michaela Bechler, Vogue, "Method Soap Bottles Get a Colorful Makeover Thanks to Oakland’s Creative Growth Art Center," 5 Feb. 2019 Lucite’ acrylic lacquer—the same paints used on General Motors automobiles. Henry Robertson, Popular Mechanics, "Can Guitar Paint Affect Your Tone?," 31 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

To Ruby, nothing can top a bulky Christmas sweater that his grandmother knitted for him, in the eighties, out of red, green, and white acrylic yarn. Christina Binkley, The New Yorker, "Sterling Ruby’s Mixed Media," 2 Sep. 2019 Later Rosenblatt sharpened up the colors with long lasting acrylic paint. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Artist donates mural to YMCA," 30 Aug. 2019 Some specimens had an unimpeded line of sight, while others were temporarily blindfolded with black acrylic paint. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, "These Caterpillars Can Detect Color Using Their Skin Not Their Eyes," 27 Aug. 2019 Jones collected donations from houses of worship in Morton Grove to fund the mural, which was made on a canvas with acrylic paints and will be on display during Saturday’s festivities. Maia Anderson,, "Morton Grove to celebrate interfaith peace fest to promote harmony after attacks," 20 Aug. 2019 After Dale sketches the design, a small but dedicated group of volunteers including Regina, Lisa and Janice Davis and her granddaughter, Elle Power, paint the blocks with industrial acrylic paint that doesn’t fade. Michelle Matthews |, al, "The story behind Alabama barn quilts," 14 Aug. 2019 Architect Bruce Goff used acrylic for transparent handrails that curl through the nautilus-like interior. Mimi Zeiger,, "La Brea Tar Pits’ trippy new pavilion from Spain’s Selgascano could be L.A.’s next selfie magnet," 27 June 2019 Her portraits can be done in several mediums, including acrylic with an oil look, charcoal, duotone, or watercolor. Julia Sayers,, "Commission the perfect pet portrait from these Birmingham artists," 27 Mar. 2018 Piper's kit fixes that by including nearly everything your child needs to transform the Pi's bare circuit board into a working wood-and-acrylic computer, including a speaker, a battery, a 9-inch display, and a kid-scale mouse. Adam Rogers, WIRED, "Top 3 Computers for Introducing Your Kids to Comp Sci," 20 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'acrylic.' 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 acrylic


1843, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1942, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for acrylic


borrowed from French (acide) acrylique, partial translation (with addition of the suffix -ique -ic entry 1) of German Acrylsäure, with acryl- from Acrolein acrolein + -yl -yl

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Statistics for acrylic

Last Updated

29 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for acrylic

The first known use of acrylic was in 1843

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English Language Learners Definition of acrylic

: a material that is made from a chemical process and that is used for making many different products (such as clothing and paints)
: paints that contain an acrylic substance and that are used by artists


acryl·​ic | \ ə-ˈkril-ik How to pronounce acrylic (audio) \

Medical Definition of acrylic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: of or relating to acrylic acid or its derivatives acrylic polymers



Medical Definition of acrylic (Entry 2 of 2)

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More from Merriam-Webster on acrylic

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with acrylic

Spanish Central: Translation of acrylic

Nglish: Translation of acrylic for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about acrylic

Comments on acrylic

What made you want to look up acrylic? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


involving a confidence or trust

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