messy

adjective
\ˈme-sē \
messier; messiest

Definition of messy 

1 : marked by confusion, disorder, or dirt : untidy a messy room

2 : lacking neatness or precision : careless, slovenly messy thinking

3 : extremely unpleasant or trying messy lawsuits a messy divorce

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Other Words from messy

messily \ˈme-​sə-​lē \ adverb
messiness \ˈme-​sē-​nəs \ noun

Examples of messy in a Sentence

Painting a room can be messy work. Some kinds of glue are messier than others. a delicious but messy sandwich
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Recent Examples on the Web

For example, the sink is actually tucked around the corner to keep messy dishes out of sight; a large pantry holds essentials behind closed doors. Samantha Weiss Hills, Curbed, "Embracing nature—and minimalism—in North Carolina," 26 Nov. 2018 Lucky for us, Hailey and Justin's families were there to document the entire messy ordeal, and the birthday girl's adorable reaction to her husband's cute trick. Jennifer Lance, Glamour, "Justin Bieber and Hailey Baldwin's First Thanksgiving as a Married Couple Got Messy," 23 Nov. 2018 Red carpet hair is an eternal study in balance: too done and the look reads overwrought, but slapdash can easily skew more messy than romantic. Calin Van Paris, Vogue, "Emma Stone Has a Disney Princess Moment—And It Comes Down to This Tiny Detail," 19 Nov. 2018 New Windows Hello Settings page: The page to set up Windows Hello-capable devices (such as a fingerprint reader or depth camera) apparently is a bit too messy, so Microsoft decided to clean it up a bit. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Hints of Windows 10's 2019 future show up in early '19H1' builds," 6 Nov. 2018 The book is messy as hell: full of insipid platitudes, trite homilies, and self-regarding detours delivered with the assurance of a man who fully expects to see his childhood finger paintings in a museum someday. Laurie Penny, Longreads, "Peterson’s Complaint," 12 July 2018 The arguments are part of a messy bankruptcy of the bunker supplier that was triggered after an audit uncovered a $300 million hole in Aegean’s books. Paul Page, WSJ, "Today’s Logistics Report: Labor Peace in Trucking; Tankers in Rebound; Supplier Tariff Tensions," 12 Nov. 2018 The actress splashed onto the scene in the early 80’s, cutting her piercing white teeth on General Hospital and sporting a set of blunt, choppy bangs that quickly morphed into a messy bouffant to match her eclectic style. Jenna Rennert, Vogue, "At 56, Demi Moore Has Never Looked Better," 11 Nov. 2018 So some of you may know me as Issa Rae's very messy best friend Molly on HBO's Insecure. Yvonne Orji, Glamour, "Yvonne Orji: I Didn't Have $7 to Buy Pizza. Then God Sent Me a New Life Plan.," 11 Nov. 2018

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

1627, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for messy

Last Updated

1 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for messy

The first known use of messy was in 1627

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More Definitions for messy

messy

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of messy

: not clean or tidy

: carelessly made or done : not careful or precise

: causing or involving a mess : likely to make something dirty or sticky

messy

adjective
\ˈme-sē \
messier; messiest

Kids Definition of messy

1 : not clean or tidy a messy room

2 : causing or making a mess a messy art project

3 : not careful or precise messy writing

Other Words from messy

messiness \ˈme-​sē-​nəs \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on messy

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with messy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for messy

Spanish Central: Translation of messy

Nglish: Translation of messy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of messy for Arabic Speakers

Comments on messy

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