: to become more lively or cheerful or to make (someone) more lively or cheerful
We perked up when we heard the good news.
The good news perked everyone up.
: to make (something) fresher or more appealing
The new paint job really perked up the room.
chiefly US, of an animal's ears: to be lifted in a quick and alert way
The dog's ears perked up.
—often used figuratively of a person
My ears perked up when I heard my name mentioned.
Examples of perk up in a Sentence
Recent Examples on the WebHis Atlantic interviewer asked if perhaps this dream traced back to The Lord of the Rings:
Yes, Thiel said, perking up.—Jack Butler, National Review, 31 Dec. 2023 That made ears perk up online since Grok isn't made by OpenAI—the company responsible for ChatGPT, which Grok is positioned to compete with.—Benj Edwards, Ars Technica, 11 Dec. 2023 Consumer sentiment readings that languished throughout most of 2023 have perked up.—Will Daniel, Fortune, 19 Jan. 2024 This was last Saturday at the start of the Chiefs-Dolphins playoff game, and while watching it on a television in his Dallas home, the SMU receivers coach suddenly perked up.—Jesse Newell, Kansas City Star, 19 Jan. 2024 It’s loaded with peptides to help strengthen and perk up the collagen.—Samantha Mims, Essence, 6 Dec. 2023 This complexion-perfecting device features thermotherapy, cryotherapy, T-Sonic pulsations, and eight LED lights to perk up the look of your skin for a brighter, plumper, and more even appearance.—Anamaria Glavan, Allure, 26 Nov. 2023 So, fans understandably perked up in late May when Waits’ longtime Irish music agent, Paul Charles, disclosed that Waits has started writing songs again — and that some recording had been completed.—George Varga, San Diego Union-Tribune, 30 Dec. 2023 Even geopolitical tensions failed to perk up prices meaningfully as the OPEC+ November meeting drew nearer.—Gaurav Sharma, Forbes, 30 Nov. 2023 See More
These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'perk up.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.