plastic

noun
plas·​tic | \ ˈpla-stik How to pronounce plastic (audio) \

Definition of plastic

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a plastic substance specifically : any of numerous organic synthetic or processed materials that are mostly thermoplastic or thermosetting polymers of high molecular weight and that can be made into objects, films, or filaments
2 : credit cards used for payment

called also plastic money

plastic

adjective

Definition of plastic (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : made or consisting of a plastic
2 : having a quality suggestive of mass-produced plastic goods especially : artificial sense 3 plastic smiles
3a : capable of being molded or modeled plastic clay
b : capable of adapting to varying conditions : pliable ecologically plastic animals
4 : capable of being deformed continuously and permanently in any direction without rupture
5 : relating to, characterized by, or exhibiting neural plasticity
6 : of, relating to, or involving plastic surgery
7 : formative, creative plastic forces in nature

Definition of -plastic (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : developing : forming thromboplastic
2 : of or relating to (something designated by a term ending in -plasm, -plast, -plasty, or -plasy) homoplastic neoplastic

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Other Words from plastic

Noun

plasticky \ ˈpla-​sti-​kē How to pronounce plasticky (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for plastic

Synonyms: Adjective

malleable, moldable, shapable (or shapeable), waxy

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Choose the Right Synonym for plastic

Adjective

plastic, pliable, pliant, ductile, malleable, adaptable mean susceptible of being modified in form or nature. plastic applies to substances soft enough to be molded yet capable of hardening into the desired fixed form. plastic materials allow the sculptor greater freedom pliable suggests something easily bent, folded, twisted, or manipulated. pliable rubber tubing pliant may stress flexibility and sometimes connote springiness. an athletic shoe with a pliant sole ductile applies to what can be drawn out or extended with ease. ductile metals such as copper malleable applies to what may be pressed or beaten into shape. the malleable properties of gold adaptable implies the capability of being easily modified to suit other conditions, needs, or uses. computer hardware that is adaptable

Examples of plastic in a Sentence

Noun

The toy was made of plastic. a company that manufactures plastics She used plastic to pay for her new computer.

Adjective

Silly Putty is famous for being very plastic. there's usually a plastic cordiality at these corporate events
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a #4 tip or a ziptop plastic bag with a small hole cut in the corner. Beth Lipton, Country Living, "Bunny Sugar Cookies," 8 Mar. 2019 According to the product description on Amazon, the mid-size organizer holds 12 assorted quart-size plastic bags, and up to 20 pounds. Maya Mcdowell, House Beautiful, "This Plastic Baggy Holder Helps Keep Track Of Leftovers And Groceries," 23 Jan. 2019 Castro shook hands, spoke and fielded questions for an hour as guests sipped wine from plastic cups. Ryan J. Foley, The Seattle Times, "Castro vows to champion health care, housing during 2020 bid," 8 Jan. 2019 Popsicle Stick and Cup Tower Challenge Using only popsicle sticks and plastic cups, see which person/team can build the highest tower. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "25 Fun Challenges to Play With Your Friends," 27 Nov. 2018 Grab a drink from the bar at the base—served in plastic sippy cups for safety—then prepare for a dizzying experience aboard this sky-skimming Ferris wheel. Jessica Voelker, Condé Nast Traveler, "Seattle’s Space Needle Unveils Its $100M Renovation," 2 Aug. 2018 Full-cylinder rollers are usually a bit softer; the hollow ones usually have harder plastic in the middle, which puts more pressure on your body with less effort on your end. Isadora Baum, SELF, "7 Foam Rolling Mistakes You Should Avoid," 16 Mar. 2019 Per Rotten Tomatoes, How to Train Your Dragon just beat out its plastic rival with a story that does justice to the sweet and family-focused first two while wrapping up with a satisfying ending (spoiler alert: baby dragons!!). Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "Animated Movies of 2019 Even Grown-Ups Will Obsess Over," 13 Mar. 2019 Stuff your children's candy and trinkets in violet plastic Easter eggs, then deck out their baskets with a personalized purple liner. Madison Alcedo, Country Living, "The Real Meaning Behind the Colors of Easter," 8 Mar. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Mix the two with the plastic end of the brush until blended. Amber Katz, Glamour, "I Started Eyebrow Tinting With Mustache Dye, and It Changed My Life," 29 Mar. 2019 The ban went into effect on Tuesday, bringing with it harsh penalties for anyone caught with the plastic device that increases the rate of fire of a semiautomatic rifle. Zusha Elinson, WSJ, "Supreme Court Denies Attempt to Stop Bump-Stock Ban," 28 Mar. 2019 The children crowd displacement camps, sleeping rough on plastic tarps on bare brick floors, or on the wooden benches of crowded schools. Cara Anna, The Seattle Times, "‘It will get worse’: Perilous times for kids hit by cyclone," 26 Mar. 2019 Model Elias Riadi wore a whole plastic look that was colorfully embedded with a rainbow of Pocky snacks. Vogue, "The 17 Best Fashion Instagrams of the Week: Michael B. Jordan Gives Blue Steel, Tracee Ellis Ross Breaks It Down, and More," 23 Mar. 2019 The recyclables that once sat in bright blue bins lining neighborhood streets aresorted by workers wearing hard hats and plastic gloves, eventually to be sold to China and other world markets. Megan Janetsky, azcentral, "Some of your recyclables may be going to landfills," 4 July 2018 The company recycles all its plastic bags and hangers, dry-cleans its clothing with a nonhazardous chemical, and has patented its own eco-friendly garment bag. Erin Quinn-kong, Woman's Day, "Are Your Fast-Fashion Clothes Killing Farmers?," 14 Feb. 2019 Céline designer Phoebe Philo’s cheeky take on a $590 clear plastic grocery bag, part of her spring 2018 collection, launched into enviable notice with imitators and breathless write-ups in fashion press such as Vogue and Refinery29. Fortune, "Rimowa and Virgil Abloh Are Creating Completely See-Through Luggage," 5 June 2018 At Ashley Williams, one head was covered in a collage of diamanté barrettes spelling out cheeky sayings, while at Fashion East, manes were topped off with plastic amber combs warped into fantastical shapes. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "5 Beauty Trends That Swept the London Runways This Week," 20 Feb. 2019

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

Noun

1803, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1624, in the meaning defined at sense 7

History and Etymology for plastic

Adjective

Latin plasticus of molding, from Greek plastikos, from plassein to mold, form

Adjective combining form

Greek -plastikos, from plassein

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Statistics for plastic

Last Updated

8 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for plastic

The first known use of plastic was in 1624

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More Definitions for plastic

plastic

noun

English Language Learners Definition of plastic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a light, strong substance that can be made into different shapes and that is used for making many common products
informal : a credit card when used for payment

plastic

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of plastic (Entry 2 of 2)

: made or consisting of plastic
informal : not real or sincere
technical : capable of being made into different shapes

plastic

adjective
plas·​tic | \ ˈpla-stik How to pronounce plastic (audio) \

Kids Definition of plastic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : made of plastic plastic bags a plastic bucket
2 : capable of being molded or modeled plastic clay

plastic

noun

Kids Definition of plastic (Entry 2 of 2)

: any of various manufactured materials that can be molded into objects or formed into films or fibers

plastic

adjective
plas·​tic | \ ˈplas-tik How to pronounce plastic (audio) \

Medical Definition of plastic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : made or consisting of a plastic
2 : capable of being deformed continuously and permanently in any direction without breaking or tearing
3a : capable of growth, repair, or differentiation a plastic tissue
b : relating to, characterized by, or exhibiting neural plasticity
4 : of, relating to, or involving plastic surgery plastic repair

plastic

noun

Medical Definition of plastic (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a plastic substance specifically : any of numerous organic synthetic or processed materials that are mostly thermoplastic or thermosetting polymers of high molecular weight and that can be made into objects, films, or filaments
2 : an object made of plastic

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Comments on plastic

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