over·​dress | \ ˌō-vər-ˈdres How to pronounce overdress (audio) \
overdressed; overdressing; overdresses

Definition of overdress

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

: to dress or adorn to excess felt overdressed for the occasion in his tuxedo

intransitive verb

: to dress oneself to excess it's better to overdress for the party than be too casual


over·​dress | \ ˈō-vər-ˌdres How to pronounce overdress (audio) \

Definition of overdress (Entry 2 of 2)

: a dress worn over another

Examples of overdress in a Sentence


He overdressed for such a casual party.

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In a post-street-style world, being overdressed is no longer considered a faux-pas—whether that translates to formal pajamas for brunch, daytime tulle, or yes, bedazzled stilettos with jeans just because. Ana Colon, Glamour, "25 Pretty Heels to Wear Beyond Special Occasions," 30 Aug. 2018 They were overdressed — Higginbottom in his suspenders and Wright in red gladiator sandals — and uncomfortable. Vanessa Gregory, New York Times, "A Lynching’s Long Shadow," 25 Apr. 2018 Rules: My mother always says you can't be overdressed just underdressed. Allison Carey, cleveland.com, "Victoria DehMalo shops anywhere, likes classic looks, swing music: Fashion Flash (photos, video)," 15 June 2017 WASHINGTON — Senator Bob Casey was overdressed for the resistance. Matt Flegenheimer, New York Times, "Bob Casey Was an Understated Senator. Then Came Trump.," 19 May 2017 Could Drake be accused of being overdressed for the first-ever awards dedicated to pro ball? Liza Corsillo, GQ, "Drake Was the Most Stylish Man at the NBA Awards," 28 June 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

All three were bogged down by degrees of overdress. Mike Sutter, San Antonio Express-News, "365 Days of Tacos: Barriba Cantina," 28 Dec. 2017

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


1704, in the meaning defined at transitive sense


1812, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for overdress

The first known use of overdress was in 1704

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English Language Learners Definition of overdress

: to dress in clothes that are too fancy, formal, or warm for an occasion


over·​dress | \ ˌō-vər-ˈdres How to pronounce overdress (audio) \
overdressed; overdressing

Kids Definition of overdress

: to dress in clothes too fancy for an occasion

More from Merriam-Webster on overdress

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with overdress

Comments on overdress

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


appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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