col·​or·​ing | \ ˈkə-lə-riŋ How to pronounce coloring (audio) \

Definition of coloring

1a : the act of applying colors
b : something that produces color or color effects
c(1) : the effect produced by applying or combining colors
(2) : natural color
d : change of appearance (as by adding color)

Synonyms for coloring


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Examples of coloring in a Sentence

Her favorite activities include playing with stuffed animals and coloring. Our product contains no artificial coloring or flavoring. She added some blue food coloring to the icing. This scarf will look great with your coloring. He has very light coloring.
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Recent Examples on the Web Finally, artificial food coloring may be of particular concern for children. Lorne J. Hofseth, The Conversation, 9 Dec. 2021 New York City trichologist Bridgette Hill calls attention to the effects of hair coloring and other in-salon chemical treatments on the scalp. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, 28 Oct. 2021 The fake blood is made out of red food coloring and corn syrup, Novak explains in videos on his social media accounts. Malak Silmi, San Antonio Express-News, 19 Oct. 2021 Add cooled white chocolate mixture and food coloring; beat just until combined. Torie Cox, Country Living, 4 Nov. 2021 The plaintiff also takes issue with the absence of information regarding artificial flavoring and added coloring on the front label and marketing materials. Ayushi Agarwal, ABC News, 27 Oct. 2021 With its form-fitting collar and angelic white coloring, the shirt gave the self — that sometimes static figuration of identity — poetic velocity. Jason Parham, Los Angeles Times, 16 Sep. 2021 Due to the unlikely duo measuring the same height from floor to shoulder — 31 inches — and their near-identical brown and white coloring, the animals look like twins. People Staff,, 22 Nov. 2021 Either of his entrants would be a worthy winner, and both are easy to spot during races with their gray coloring. Larry Stumes, San Francisco Chronicle, 27 Oct. 2021

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for coloring

Time Traveler

The first known use of coloring was in the 15th century

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Dictionary Entries Near coloring

color in


coloring book

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Statistics for coloring

Last Updated

8 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Coloring.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for coloring



English Language Learners Definition of coloring

: the act of adding colors to something (such as a picture in a coloring book)
: something that produces color
: the color of a person's skin and hair


col·​or·​ing | \ ˈkə-lə-riŋ How to pronounce coloring (audio) \

Kids Definition of coloring

1 : the act of applying colors His favorite activities are doing puzzles and coloring.
2 : something that produces color This cookie has no artificial coloring.
3 : the effect produced by the use of color His paintings are famous for their bright coloring.
4 : natural color The cat has beautiful coloring.
5 : complexion That red shirt looks great with your coloring.

More from Merriam-Webster on coloring

Nglish: Translation of coloring for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of coloring for Arabic Speakers


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