bleach

verb
\ ˈblēch \
bleached; bleaching; bleaches

Definition of bleach 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to remove color or stains from
2a : to make whiter or lighter especially by physical or chemical removal of color bleach clothing the sun had bleached her hair
b : to remove, make dull, or sanitize as if by removing color bleaches colonialism of its genocidal legacy— H. A. Giroux

intransitive verb

1 : to grow white or lose color
2 of coral : to expel symbiotic zooxanthellae exposing a white skeleton

bleach

noun

Definition of bleach (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or process of bleaching
2 : a preparation used in bleaching
3 : the degree of whiteness obtained by bleaching

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Other Words from bleach

Verb

bleachable \ ˈblē-​chə-​bəl \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for bleach

Synonyms: Verb

blanch, blench, decolorize, dull, fade, pale, snow, wash out, whiten

Antonyms: Verb

darken, deepen, embrown

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Examples of bleach in a Sentence

Verb

bones bleached white by the sun She bleached her hair blonde.

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Why Go NowThe gorgeously sun-bleached, 58-villa Six Senses Ninh Van Bay has been quietly besting the competition for years, luring a chic yet low-key clientele that’s a world apart from the boozy bacchanal of Nha Trang itself. Peter Jon Lindberg, Condé Nast Traveler, "How to Take Your Vietnam Trip to the Next Level," 20 Nov. 2018 Blue-leaved varieties will bleach to green with too much direct sun. Kris Wetherbee, Good Housekeeping, "How to Grow the Most Stunning Hostas," 7 Aug. 2018 One family tried desperately to bleach themselves and their homes to keep away the contagion, blinding themselves in the process. Verge Staff, The Verge, "Seven scary stories to tell by the light of your screen," 31 Oct. 2018 Face: Strawberry Facial Cleanser Ingredients: 4-6 ripe strawberries, 2 drops of peppermint oil Uses: Strawberry juice has gentle astringent & bleaching properties and is a great light everyday cleanser. Womansday.com Staff, Woman's Day, "WD on TV: Make Your Own Beauty Products," 20 Jan. 2011 Marmur and Sadick agree that pads with a rough texture or made from a material that has been bleached or treated with other chemicals can be too harsh on skin and trigger allergic reactions. Devon Abelman, Allure, "Korean Cotton Pads Are the Secret to a Proper K-Beauty Skin Routine," 4 Oct. 2018 The products at the drugstore all have essentially the same whitening ingredient - the bleaching agent peroxide. Jill U. Adams, chicagotribune.com, "The pros and cons of whitening your teeth," 1 May 2018 My shocked realization happened in 2014, as the third global mass-bleaching event began. Rebecca Albright, Scientific American, "Scientists Are Taking Extreme Steps to Help Corals Survive," 1 Jan. 2018 Back home, Ahn is a fixture at Seoul Fashion Week and easy to spot, thanks to the signature bleached shag that, for many seasons, had been a cool sleet gray. Monica Kim, Vogue, "24 Hours With Ahreum Ahn, the First It Girl From Seoul," 15 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The directions for care are simple—just throw them in the washing machine with warm water and detergent, avoiding bleach or fabric softeners. Sarah Wu, Glamour, "This $30 Aquis Towel Completely Saved My Hair Color," 10 Dec. 2018 The Issue: Mildew If the grout is mildewed or badly stained, mix a 50/50 solution of oxygen bleach and water, and apply it with a sponge or pump-up sprayer. Joseph Truini, Popular Mechanics, "How to Clean Dirty Grout," 5 Dec. 2018 After cleaning, pour 1/2 cup bleach into the water. Amanda Garrity, Good Housekeeping, "How to Get Rid of Unwanted Odors in Your House," 29 Nov. 2018 Non-bleach options still yield fun, bright results. Sam Escobar, Good Housekeeping, "How Young Is Too Young to Dye Your Kid's Hair?," 15 Oct. 2018 Now, her once bleach-blonde hair is a little darker, and her hair has been cropped and layered to just under her ears. Jenna Rosenstein, Harper's BAZAAR, "Emilia Clarke Just Cut Off All Her Hair And It's SO Short," 27 Sep. 2018 In fact, Jordyn shared a photo to her Instagram Stories of the pair twinning from head to toe in grey sneakers, black workout clothes, and bleach-blonde hair. Zoë Weiner, Teen Vogue, "Jordyn Woods Dyed Her Hair a Bright Blonde," 27 Aug. 2018 The science site suggests using boiling water and a small amount of bleach to get rid of larvae. Jennifer Earl, Fox News, "New Hampshire beach covered in thousands of 'nasty' maggots," 7 Sep. 2018 Surprisingly enough, five minutes of bleach got that out of my extremely light hair. Marci Robin, Allure, "A Bride's Blue Pen Exploded in Her Hair Days Before Her Wedding, and the Photos Are Dramatic," 18 Aug. 2018

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

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

1746, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bleach

Verb

Middle English blechen, from Old English blǣcean; akin to Old English blāc pale; probably akin to Latin flagrare to burn — more at black

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Dictionary Entries near bleach

bld

bldg

bldr

bleach

bleached ginger

bleached rattler

bleacher

Statistics for bleach

Last Updated

24 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for bleach

The first known use of bleach was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for bleach

bleach

verb

English Language Learners Definition of bleach

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to remove color or dirt and stains from (hair, clothing, etc.) especially through the effect of sunlight or by using chemicals : to make (something) whiter or lighter in color

bleach

noun

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

: a strong chemical that is used to make something clean or white

bleach

verb
\ ˈblēch \
bleached; bleaching

Kids Definition of bleach

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to make white by removing the color or stains from

bleach

noun

Kids Definition of bleach (Entry 2 of 2)

: a chemical used for bleaching

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More from Merriam-Webster on bleach

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bleach

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bleach

Spanish Central: Translation of bleach

Nglish: Translation of bleach for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bleach for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about bleach

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