la·​tex | \ ˈlā-ˌteks How to pronounce latex (audio) \
plural latices\ ˈlā-​tə-​ˌsēz How to pronounce latex (audio) , ˈla-​ \ or latexes

Definition of latex

1 : a milky usually white fluid that is produced by cells of various seed plants (as of the milkweed, spurge, and poppy families) and is the source of rubber, gutta-percha, chicle, and balata
2 : a water emulsion of a synthetic rubber or plastic obtained by polymerization and used especially in coatings (such as paint) and adhesives

Examples of latex in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Latex: These mattresses are made from natural and synthetic latex which can be antimicrobial and hypoallergenic. Daisy Kelly,, "The best mattress for the money," 11 Apr. 2021 That's because the oil from these products can actually degrade the latex, says Dr. Levine. Zahra Barnes, SELF, "Can You Get Pregnant With a Condom?," 29 Dec. 2020 Do be careful when pruning figs about getting the sap or latex on your skin. Janet Carson, Arkansas Online, "What a beautiful spring week!," 11 Apr. 2021 The combination of a sturdy leather upper attached to a latex sole via a Norwegian welt was a home run, especially for French farmers who needed durable, waterproof footwear. Benedict Browne, Robb Report, "Why This Cult Shoe Brand Is Beloved by Farmers and Street-Style Stars Alike," 1 Apr. 2021 The snail, played by Maria Pia Timo, was created with prosthetic makeup, a latex bodysuit and a fiberglass shell pulled on a small trolley. Emily Zemler, Los Angeles Times, "‘Pinocchio’ hair and makeup team creates a seamless blend of animals, humans, puppets," 22 Mar. 2021 Made from all-natural and organic materials — such as Birch wool from New Zealand, latex tapped from trees, organic cotton and steel coils — Birch mattresses are ultra comfy and nontoxic. Kami Phillips, CNN Underscored, "The top 12 mattress-in-a-box brands to shop now," 15 Mar. 2021 Apply one coat of primer, followed by two topcoats of acrylic latex paint. Tim Faszer, Popular Mechanics, "How to Build a Fishing Tackle Cabinet," 13 Mar. 2021 However, latex is among the most expensive materials used in comfort layers. Anthony Marcusa,, "What is a hybrid mattress?," 11 Mar. 2021

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

See More

First Known Use of latex

1832, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for latex

New Latin latic-, latex, from Latin, fluid

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about latex

Statistics for latex

Last Updated

3 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Latex.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 May. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for latex



English Language Learners Definition of latex

: a white fluid produced by certain plants that is used for making rubber also : a similar material that is used for making various products (such as paint and glue)


la·​tex | \ ˈlā-ˌteks How to pronounce latex (audio) \

Kids Definition of latex

1 : a milky plant juice that is the source of rubber
2 : a mixture of water and tiny particles of rubber or plastic used especially in paints


la·​tex | \ ˈlā-ˌteks How to pronounce latex (audio) \
plural latices\ ˈlāt-​ə-​ˌsēz How to pronounce latex (audio) , ˈlat-​ How to pronounce latex (audio) \ or latexes

Medical Definition of latex

: a milky usually white fluid that is usually made up of various gum resins, fats, or waxes and often a complex mixture of other substances frequently including poisonous compounds, is produced by cells of various seed plants (as of the milkweed, spurge, and poppy families), and is the source of rubber, gutta-percha, chicle, and balata

More from Merriam-Webster on latex

Nglish: Translation of latex for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of latex for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about latex

Comments on latex

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Star Wars Words Quiz

  • cu jedi training
  • The bounty portion of bounty hunters (such as Boba Fett) comes from a Latin word meaning
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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