elbow grease

noun

Definition of elbow grease

: hard work There is just no substitution for the elbow grease involved in promotion. You just have to get out there and work hard to get the word to the stores that the book is available.— Andy Shafran especially : vigorously applied physical labor or effort Best of all, the metal handle is bendable, making it easy to defat liquids of varying depths. Kudos to a kitchen tool that spares elbow grease. — Grace Young

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Examples of elbow grease in a Sentence

It's going to take some elbow grease to get this counter clean. with a little polish and a lot of elbow grease, I was able to make the old silver teapot shine again

Recent Examples on the Web

With a rolling pin and a lot of elbow grease, the home cooks of centuries past were able to deliver beautiful bowls of handmade pasta on a nightly basis. Audrey Bruno, SELF, "How to Make Homemade Pasta Without a Machine," 7 Jan. 2019 When choosing a layered haircut, keep in mind that daily styling might involve some extra elbow grease on your part. Jaime Osnato, SELF, "10 Styling Hacks to Create Thicker-Looking Hair," 5 Jan. 2019 Getting rid of that all that gunk often takes hours—and some serious elbow grease. Marlisse Cepeda, Woman's Day, "This Trick Will Forever Change How You Clean Your Oven," 14 Mar. 2016 With a bit of elbow grease, some paint, and tape, Shannon turned this dingy cart into a sophisticated necessity for holiday cocktail parties and outdoor barbecues too. Wendy Manwarren Generes, Country Living, "How to Give a Simple Thrift Store Bar Cart a Makeover," 9 Oct. 2014 Keep in mind that any existing stain, paint, or varnish will take some extra elbow grease to fully remove. Maggie Burch, House Beautiful, "Everything You Need to Know Before Painting Your Cabinets," 14 Nov. 2017 Thankfully, the cast didn't have to put too much elbow grease into the house's decorations. Jennifer Aldrich, Country Living, "Hallmark's 'Christmas at Pemberley Manor' Was Filmed in This Connecticut Town You Can Visit," 27 Oct. 2018 Each has their drawbacks and benefits, and all come with a hefty amount of DIY elbow grease. Megan Barber, Curbed, "5 surprising vehicles you can convert into a home on wheels," 27 July 2018 Our profile of hard-charging film producer Jason Blum, founder and CEO of Blumhouse Productions, shows that discovering the next big thing is sometimes a matter of elbow grease and determined belt-tightening. Kristina O’neill, WSJ, "WSJ. Magazine Editor’s Letter: Incredible Journeys," 26 July 2018

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

1672, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for elbow grease

Last Updated

22 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for elbow grease

The first known use of elbow grease was in 1672

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More Definitions for elbow grease

elbow grease

noun

English Language Learners Definition of elbow grease

informal : physical effort : hard work

More from Merriam-Webster on elbow grease

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