clingier; clingiest
: having the quality of clinging to someone or something: such as
: tending to adhere to a surface upon contact
a clingy plastic wrap
clingy fabrics/clothes
In her clingiest [=tightest-fitting] dress she swings into town and soon has the men howling.Peter Travers
: tending to stay very close to someone (such as a parent) for emotional support, protection, etc.
a clingy child
Some kids act out or become whiny to get a parent's attention; others become clingy or fearful.Leah Hennen
clinginess noun
disliked the fabric's clinginess
Any number of women I interviewed cited clinginess in a boyfriend as a major deal breaker. Liza Mundy

Examples of clingy in a Sentence

it took forever to clean up the clingy Styrofoam pellets that had been used as packing material for the lamp
Recent Examples on the Web And, of course, clingy sauces from some dishes — like red curry wings for example — may be difficult to rinse off. Erin Clements, Peoplemag, 10 Feb. 2024 She’s become very clingy and spends a lot of time parked right next to me on the couch. Joan Morris, The Mercury News, 15 Jan. 2024 Underneath the armor, Nas wore a clingy bodysuit completely bedazzled with sparkling gold sequins. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, 2 May 2023 Static electricity builds up on the grounds, leaving a clingy mess stuck in the grinder. Carolyn Y. Johnson, Washington Post, 6 Dec. 2023 When the waiter brings our food, his clingy shirt and white tennis shorts remind Marshall of the athletes she’s dated. Mikael Wood, Los Angeles Times, 20 Nov. 2023 The glossy, inert staleness of the first sequel in 2016 was already proof that the judgmental and clingy Portokalos clan were only sitcom cliches to begin with. Robert Abele, Los Angeles Times, 8 Sep. 2023 Directed by famed photographer Herb Ritts, Madonna – in a clingy black shirtdress – frolicked in the water and flirted with mermen. Cara Lynn Shultz, Peoplemag, 16 Aug. 2023 As your breasts expand during pregnancy, clingy tops might become more constricting than cute—and inside seams could aggravate sensitive breasts. Kimberly A. Daly, Parents, 21 Aug. 2023

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

Word History

First Known Use

1702, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of clingy was in 1702

Dictionary Entries Near clingy

Cite this Entry

“Clingy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 May. 2024.

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