cleanse

1 of 2

verb

cleansed; cleansing; cleanses

transitive verb

1
: clean
especially : to rid of impurities by or as if by washing
cleansed the wound
It's that mystical state most athletes are lucky to achieve a few times in their careers. The mind is cleansed. The body is free. Jon Wertheim
2
: to expel, imprison, or kill (the members of an ethnic minority) in (an area) : to subject to or remove by ethnic cleansing
In 1996, tens of thousands of ethnic Tutsis, most of them of Rwandan origin, were murdered or ethnically cleansed in the Masisi region of eastern Zaire.David Rieff

intransitive verb

: to engage in or undergo a cleanse to remove toxins from the body
Some people who cleanse say they experience dramatic physical changes.Karen Hube

cleanse

2 of 2

noun

: a very restrictive short-term diet primarily intended to remove toxins from the body
Under the supervision of her nutritionist … Gillian Anderson has reportedly participated in cleanses that consist of little more than liquids for 10 days.J. D. Heiman
… told me about her 28-day cleanse, which limits the caffeine, sugar, gluten, dairy and red meat in your diet.Jon Harris

Examples of cleanse in a Sentence

Verb The cut should be cleansed gently with mild soap and water. in an elaborate ritual the priestess cleansed the gathering of supplicants
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
Next, develop an analytics hub that enables collecting, cleansing and slicing data in all the ways required. Michelle Bogan, Forbes, 14 Feb. 2024 The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) suggests changing diapers frequently, gently cleansing the skin at each diaper change, and choosing absorbent diapers that keep the skin dry. Sarah Bradley, Parents, 13 Feb. 2024 This mist works to pen up and deeply cleanse your pores. Hyphensocial Contributors, Rolling Stone, 7 Feb. 2024 According to their site, peppermint invigorates the scalp, while apple cider vinegar deeply cleanses as the sugar scrub gently exfoliates. Essence, 5 Feb. 2024 Conditioner can help your now clean hair return to a healthier look and feel after the shampoo cleansed it. Amber Smith, Discover Magazine, 2 Feb. 2024 With a variety of different modes to choose from, this device will not only cleanse your skin but remove any blackheads or buildup that may be sitting around too. Katiee McKinstry, Rolling Stone, 31 Jan. 2024 Cleanser Men and women alike should cleanse their skin two times per day: once in the morning and once in the evening before bed. Leslie Baumann, Miami Herald, 30 Jan. 2024 Chefs will also be serving Buddha’s Delight, a traditional meal that cleanses the soul and spirit. Emma Hall, Sacramento Bee, 29 Jan. 2024
Noun
One of the kinds of data-broker sites Mozilla Monitor aims to help you cleanse of your details. Kevin Purdy, Ars Technica, 6 Feb. 2024 Supplements can be dangerous for teens Teens may also embrace fads like fasting, juice or tea cleanses and supplements, which are especially used for bodybuilding and weight loss. Rochelle Koff, Miami Herald, 30 Jan. 2024 To publicly acknowledge the cleanse would have been to jinx it, not to mention an example of the kind of self-aggrandizement that social media encourages. Kyle Chayka, The New Yorker, 13 Jan. 2024 Find it on Amazon This Body Brush To Exfoliate Fast Shower time just got a lot more fun with this Body Brush that will work to cleanse, massage, exfoliate, and pamper your skin to perfection. Kat Romero, Rolling Stone, 31 Jan. 2024 But while washing your hair might seem straightforward, a truly effective cleanse requires some thought and expertise. Caitie Kelly, New York Times, 29 Jan. 2024 Some products aim to both remove makeup and cleanse, particularly cleansing oils and makeup balms. Iman Balagam, Vogue, 25 Jan. 2024 It’s formulated with pink clay to improve circulation while delivering a deep cleanse. Talia Connor, Rolling Stone, 22 Jan. 2024 To start, even famous faces need a good daily cleanse. Jenny Berg, Vogue, 25 Dec. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'cleanse.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Verb

Middle English clensen, from Old English clǣnsian to purify, from clǣne clean

First Known Use

Verb

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

Noun

1999, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of cleanse was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near cleanse

Cite this Entry

“Cleanse.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cleanse. Accessed 26 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

cleanse

verb
cleansed; cleansing
: to make clean

Medical Definition

cleanse

1 of 2 transitive verb
ˈklenz
cleansed; cleansing
: to make clean

intransitive verb

: to engage in or undergo a cleanse to remove toxins from the body

cleanse

2 of 2 noun
: a very restrictive short-term diet primarily intended to remove toxins from the body

More from Merriam-Webster on cleanse

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