detergent

adjective
de·ter·gent | \-jənt \

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

cleaner, cleanser, soap

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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: Noun

Theft Three bottles of laundry detergent were reported stolen March 24 from Walgreens, 6 North Ave. John Hilliard, BostonGlobe.com, "Passenger dies on United flight headed to Boston," 27 June 2018 Make sure none of the detergent accidentally drops into the water. Science Buddies, Scientific American, "Surface Tension Science: Build a Raft Powered by Soap," 26 June 2014 The researchers tested a batch of Acinetobacter found on NASA spacecraft by starving them of ordinary nutrients and then subjecting them to pure ethanol, isopropyl alcohol, and Kleenol 30, a floor detergent. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "It Turns Out Bacteria Can Eat the Chemicals NASA Puts on Spacecraft to Kill Them," 6 June 2018 Use a scrub brush to wash cans in a strong detergent solution. Diane Mason, Cincinnati.com, "Flood waters may contaminate foods," 20 Feb. 2018 Spray another cloth with the cold water, and use it to rinse the detergent solution from the carpet, then blot again with a dry cloth. Lauren Smith, Good Housekeeping, "The Ultimate Guide on How to Clean Carpets," 17 Jan. 2018 Drain the detergent solution and wipe the sink if soap residue remains. Jolie Kerr, Town & Country, "How to Keep Your Lilly Pulitzer Clothes Looking Great All Summer Long," 16 June 2017 Having a heated seat in your car or using dishwasher detergent were also good wealth indicators. Don Reisinger, Fortune, "Here Are the Best Indicators of Whether You're Rich," 9 July 2018 The difference between the two bottles results from adding dish detergent to the Oil+Water+Soap bottle. Megan Arnett, Scientific American, "Mix It Up with Oil and Water," 24 May 2018

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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Phrases Related to detergent

dish detergent

dishwashing detergent

Statistics for detergent

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for detergent

The first known use of detergent was in 1616

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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 \

Kids Definition of detergent

: a substance that cleans

detergent

adjective
de·ter·gent | \di-ˈtər-jənt \

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

a : soap sense 1

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

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Comments on detergent

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