dis·​pos·​able | \ di-ˈspō-zə-bəl How to pronounce disposable (audio) \

Definition of disposable

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : subject to or available for disposal specifically : remaining to an individual after deduction of taxes and necessary living expenses disposable income
2 : designed to be used once or only a limited number of times and then thrown away disposable diapers Replace the disposable razor when the blade becomes dull.



Definition of disposable (Entry 2 of 2)

: something that is disposable

Other Words from disposable


disposability \ di-​ˌspō-​zə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce disposable (audio) \ noun

Examples of disposable in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The somewhat cynical reality here is that Apple products are top shelf, and inflation is eating into people's disposable incomes. Allison Morrow, CNN, 8 Sep. 2022 Russians’ real wages are expected to drop almost 6% this year, and their real disposable incomes set for a 7.5% decline, according to Russian bank VEB. Yvonne Lau, Fortune, 16 July 2022 Some experts say the CDC’s hands-off approach to elastomeric respirators is unintentionally encouraging a return to the nation’s reliance on disposable masks made overseas. Andrew Jacobs, BostonGlobe.com, 3 July 2022 High inflation is already eroding real disposable incomes, which fell by 1.2% in the first quarter of the year compared with last year, while the poverty rate increased, according to official statistics. Georgi Kantchev, WSJ, 16 June 2022 These disposable pleated masks from DemeTech feature three layers of material. Laura Fisher, Health.com, 25 Apr. 2022 With their substantial disposable incomes, higher-income households can, of course, more easily absorb the rising cost of necessities. Rachel Siegel And Andrew Van Dam, Anchorage Daily News, 14 Feb. 2022 With their substantial disposable incomes, higher-income households can, of course, more easily absorb the rising cost of necessities. Washington Post, 9 Feb. 2022 Vaccines continue to be administered, though at a slightly slower pace than before, while stimulus checks helped U.S. disposable incomes jump an unheard-of 29% in March compared to the same month last year. Frank Holmes, Forbes, 27 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Until recently, the chain offered slight discounts when customers brought in their own mugs to encourage using those instead of disposables. Danielle Wiener-bronner, CNN, 9 Mar. 2020 But the holes in the government’s flavor ban have merely opened the door to an array of competing brands that produce disposables, like Puff Bars, blu, Posh, and Stig. Sheila Kaplan, BostonGlobe.com, 1 Feb. 2020 Festivals’ move toward reusable wares has been prompted in part by a new California law encouraging a clampdown on plastic waste from disposables. Elena Shao, SFChronicle.com, 4 Aug. 2019 That was part of Hubble’s motivation — lenses, especially daily disposables, can be expensive, and the major manufacturers have been accused of anticompetitive practices in recent years. Sapna Maheshwari, New York Times, 21 July 2019 And there are significant knock-on effects of improper disposable: many of the drugs identified in the 2017 study are known to kill, harm the health of, or change the behavior of fish, insects and other wildlife. Elijah Wolfson, Time, 30 Dec. 2019 Reduce use of paper products and disposables — Be environmentally friendly. Maria Ward, Houston Chronicle, 20 Sep. 2019 There’s also the question of how environmentally friendly reusable dishware actually is, compared with disposables. Elena Shao, SFChronicle.com, 4 Aug. 2019 But they’re all considerably bigger than regular disposables. Anna Momigliano, Washington Post, 27 June 2019 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'disposable.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of disposable


1643, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1963, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for disposable

Time Traveler

The first known use of disposable was in 1643

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Dictionary Entries Near disposable



disposable income

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Statistics for disposable

Last Updated

15 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Disposable.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/disposable. Accessed 26 Sep. 2022.

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More Definitions for disposable


dis·​pos·​able | \ dis-ˈpō-zə-bəl How to pronounce disposable (audio) \

Kids Definition of disposable

: made to be thrown away after use disposable diapers

More from Merriam-Webster on disposable

Nglish: Translation of disposable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of disposable for Arabic Speakers


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