hy·​dro·​phil·​ic | \ ˌhī-drə-ˈfi-lik How to pronounce hydrophilic (audio) \

Definition of hydrophilic

: of, relating to, or having a strong affinity for water hydrophilic proteins

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from hydrophilic

hydrophilicity \ ˌhī-​drə-​fi-​ˈli-​sə-​tē How to pronounce hydrophilicity (audio) \ noun

Examples of hydrophilic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The pink-and-white hydrophilic sponge is almost too pretty to use — almost. Devon Abelman, Allure, "The New Beautyblender Swirl Is Almost Too Pretty To Use," 7 July 2017 NBS Corning Corning, New York NBS – as in nonbinding surface – is a nonionic hydrophilic polymer coating that prevents traces of proteins, DNA, or drug compounds from sticking to test tubes or assay plates. David Pescovitz, WIRED, "Stuff Love," 1 Jan. 2001

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

First Known Use of hydrophilic

1901, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hydrophilic

New Latin hydrophilus, from Greek hydr- + -philos -philous

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about hydrophilic

Share hydrophilic

Statistics for hydrophilic

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hydrophilic

The first known use of hydrophilic was in 1901

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for hydrophilic


hy·​dro·​phil·​ic | \ -ˈfil-ik How to pronounce hydrophilic (audio) \

Medical Definition of hydrophilic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: of, relating to, or having a strong affinity for water hydrophilic colloids swell in water and are relatively stable soft contact lenses are made of hydrophilic plastic, which absorbs water — compare lipophilic, lyophilic, oleophilic

Other Words from hydrophilic

hydrophilicity \ -​fi-​ˈlis-​ət-​ē How to pronounce hydrophilicity (audio) \ noun, plural -ties



Medical Definition of hydrophilic (Entry 2 of 2)

More from Merriam-Webster on hydrophilic

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hydrophilic

Comments on hydrophilic

What made you want to look up hydrophilic? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to boil down or concentrate

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Original Meanings Quiz

  • rembrandt-painting-a-young-scholar-and-his-tutor
  • Which of the following is the earliest known sense of the word awe?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!