crin·​kle | \ ˈkriŋ-kəl How to pronounce crinkle (audio) \
crinkled; crinkling\ ˈkriŋ-​k(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce crinkling (audio) \

Definition of crinkle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to form many short bends or ripples
b : wrinkle
2 : to give forth a thin crackling sound : rustle crinkling silks

transitive verb

: to cause to crinkle : make crinkles in



Definition of crinkle (Entry 2 of 2)

2 : any of several virus diseases of plants marked by crinkling of leaves

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Other Words from crinkle


crinkly \ ˈkriŋ-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce crinkly (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for crinkle

Synonyms: Verb


Synonyms: Noun

crease, crimp, furrow, wrinkle

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Examples of crinkle in a Sentence


The corners of his eyes crinkle when he smiles. a paper seat cover that crinkles with every move


little crinkles at the corners of his mouth showed whenever he smiled
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Here Ahmari’s eyes crinkled with the requisite disgust. Osita Nwanevu, The New Republic, "The Right Wing’s Cultural Civil War Is a Drag," 9 Sep. 2019 Upstairs, paper covering the floor crinkled under her feet. Los Angeles Times, "Broadway Place’s homeless residents were promised homes. Had the city forgotten them?," 15 Aug. 2019 The videos continue to trend on YouTube, but only certain people seem to benefit from them. What’s with all the lip-smacking, slime-poking, plastic-crinkling content on YouTube lately? Karen Pallarito,, "How Does ASMR Work? The Science Behind Those Brain-Tingling Sounds," 6 June 2019 Common stimuli that act as ASMR triggers include whispering, hair brushing, crinkling objects, nail tapping, crunching, chewing and slurping. Annie Vainshtein,, "Everything you ever wanted to know about ASMR," 27 June 2019 That ridge pins the ice in place and slows its flow, forcing ice upstream to pile up, fold, crinkle, and sometimes crack. National Geographic, "This giant chunk of ice could break off Antarctica any day," 25 Mar. 2019 Glue a smattering of leaves to your jar, then brush an additional layer of glue on top of each one; the glue will crinkle your newspaper a bit and ensure that your leaves stay put. Lauren Oster, Redbook, "Autumn DIY: Paper-and-Glass Leaf Votives," 18 Nov. 2010 Leaves are crinkled, twisted and in some instances almost transparent. Tom Maccubbin,, "Strange happenings among citrus trees," 29 June 2018 According to a small new study from Western University in Ontario, crinkling around the eyes makes smiles and frowns appear more sincere. Amanda Macmillan,, "Smile! Wrinkles Around Our Eyes Make Us Appear More Sincere," 12 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The street stand’s menu includes fried chicken with four levels of heat, available in brioche sandwiches, in tacos with flour tortillas or served over crinkle fries. Hadley Tomicki, Los Angeles Times, "A former Mozza chef is making tacos at Bee Taqueria in West Adams," 6 Aug. 2019 How about a ShackBurger, crinkle-cut fries and shake from Shake Shack? Savor a bowl of hummus, braised lamb and califlower quinoa tabbouleh at Cava Grill, or a watermelon and heirloom tomato salad from Tocaya Organica. Pam Kragen, San Diego Union-Tribune, "One Paseo: A day in the life of San Diego’s new urban village," 11 July 2019 The fast-food chain, known for its Pat LaFrieda beef and crinkle cut fries, is watching the vegan burger trend that’s been turbocharged by Beyond Meat Inc.’s massive post-IPO stock rally. Craig Giammona,, "Shake Shack holds back on vegan burger, not sure if fake meat is more than a fad," 21 June 2019 The pink of her gums and crinkles by her eyes did not belong to her voice. Lauren Mechling, Vogue, "Confessions of a Pod Person," 27 May 2019 The crack is upstream from a set of crinkles, visible from the satellite photos, called the McDonald Ice Rumples. National Geographic, "This giant chunk of ice could break off Antarctica any day," 25 Mar. 2019 Shake Shack Shake Shack is luring people to the ballots with their famous crinkle cuts. Suzannah Weiss, Teen Vogue, "7 Election Day Free Food Deals," 6 Nov. 2018 Sonny’s BBQ: Classic crinkle-cut fries are only 50 cents Friday, dine-in only. Taco Bell: Nacho Fries have returned for a limited time. Natalie Dreier, ajc, "Celebrate National French Fry day with what else, french fry deals," 13 July 2018 Sonny’s BBQ: Enjoy 50 cent crinkle cut fries on July 13. Lauren Delgado,, "Here's how to celebrate National French Fry Day," 13 July 2018

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


circa 1600, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a


1596, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for crinkle


Middle English crynkelen; akin to Old English cringan to yield

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Statistics for crinkle

Last Updated

20 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for crinkle

The first known use of crinkle was in 1596

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More Definitions for crinkle



English Language Learners Definition of crinkle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to form small, thin lines on the surface



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

: a small, thin line that appears on a surface


crin·​kle | \ ˈkriŋ-kəl How to pronounce crinkle (audio) \
crinkled; crinkling

Kids Definition of crinkle

1 : to form or cause little waves or wrinkles on the surface : wrinkle

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More from Merriam-Webster on crinkle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with crinkle

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for crinkle

Spanish Central: Translation of crinkle

Nglish: Translation of crinkle for Spanish Speakers

Comments on crinkle

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