detergent

adjective
de·​ter·​gent | \ di-ˈtər-jənt How to pronounce detergent (audio) \

Definition of detergent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: that cleanses : cleansing a detergent oil

detergent

noun

Definition of detergent (Entry 2 of 2)

: a cleansing agent: such as
a : soap
b : any of numerous synthetic water-soluble or liquid organic preparations that are chemically different from soaps but are able to emulsify oils, hold dirt in suspension, and act as wetting agents
c : an oil-soluble substance that holds insoluble foreign matter in suspension and is used in lubricating oils and dry-cleaning solvents

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Synonyms for detergent

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of detergent in a Sentence

Noun We have tried different laundry detergents. add the detergent to the washing machine before putting in the clothes
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Using a clean, white cloth, sponge the stain with the detergent-vinegar solution and then blot until the liquid is absorbed. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, 21 Jan. 2021 Last year, an ad for a detergent brand showing a Hindu child protecting a Muslim child during the festival of colors had elicited a boycott call too. Washington Post, 14 Oct. 2020 The washer-dryer makes realistic sounds and boasts quite a few features: detergent drawer, folding tabletop, storage baskets, and tumbling drum. Lindsey Hunter Lopez, USA TODAY, 7 Oct. 2020 Laundry stripping isn't new by any means: Many people, including Good Housekeeping Institute's Cleaning Lab, have used this soaking method for years to remove detergent residue, fabric softener, minerals from hard water, and body oils from textiles. Amanda Garrity, Good Housekeeping, 19 Aug. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Use soap or down wash, not use commercial detergent. Hadley Mendelsohn, House Beautiful, 8 July 2021 Stop using laundry detergent containing petroleum, phosphates, phthalates and parabens. Washington Post, 26 Mar. 2021 Counters: Use a clean, soft cotton cloth with water and a mild, non-chemical liquid detergent to wipe down Formica laminate. oregonlive, 23 Mar. 2021 Harasim recommends using liquid clothes detergent for delicate items or a cleanser made specifically for the type of filler in your pillows. Claire Gillespie, Health.com, 28 Sep. 2020 Some washers work best with specific laundry detergent. Laura Wheatman Hill, chicagotribune.com, 10 Apr. 2021 After the sap is removed, rub the area with a little detergent and wash as usual. Washington Post, 15 Mar. 2021 Place in the washing machine with laundry detergent in the warmest water recommended on your care tag. Tamara Gane, Southern Living, 12 Mar. 2021 To clean your reusable kitchen sponge, wash it in your washing machine with detergent and dry completely. Emily Vanschmus, Better Homes & Gardens, 22 Jan. 2021

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

Adjective

1616, in the meaning defined above

Noun

1676, in the meaning defined above

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Buying Guide

Our team at The Usage has selected the best washing machines of 2021.

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Time Traveler for detergent

Time Traveler

The first known use of detergent was in 1616

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Dictionary Entries Near detergent

detergency

detergent

deteriorable

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Statistics for detergent

Cite this Entry

“Detergent.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/detergent. Accessed 30 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for detergent

detergent

noun

English Language Learners Definition of detergent

: a powder or liquid that is used to clean clothes, dishes, etc. : a chemical substance that is like soap

detergent

noun
de·​ter·​gent | \ di-ˈtər-jənt How to pronounce detergent (audio) \

Kids Definition of detergent

: a substance that cleans

detergent

adjective
de·​ter·​gent | \ di-ˈtər-jənt How to pronounce detergent (audio) \

Medical Definition of detergent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: having a cleansing action

detergent

noun

Medical Definition of detergent (Entry 2 of 2)

: a cleansing agent: as
b : any of numerous synthetic water-soluble or liquid organic preparations that are chemically different from soaps but are able to emulsify oils, hold dirt in suspension, and act as wetting agents

More from Merriam-Webster on detergent

Nglish: Translation of detergent for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of detergent for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about detergent

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