\ ˈprep \

Definition of prep

 (Entry 1 of 3)

3 : a preliminary trial for a racehorse


prepped; prepping

Definition of prep (Entry 2 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to attend preparatory school
2 [ short for prepare ] : to get ready

transitive verb

: prepare especially : to prepare for an operation or examination nurses prepped the patient

Definition of PrEP (Entry 3 of 3)

pre-exposure prophylaxis The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said that PrEP, when used consistently, can reduce the risk of H.I.V. infection by up to 92 percent.— Ginia Bellafante

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Synonyms for prep

Synonyms: Verb

fit, fix, groom, lay, prepare, ready

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Examples of prep in a Sentence


Painting a room involves a lot of prep.


She spent all night prepping for the test. The runners are prepping themselves for the race. It took me about 20 minutes to prep the vegetables.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

If your lips feel particularly rough, start your lip prep with a scrub. Talia Abbas, SELF, "13 Things I Learned When I Wore Red Lipstick Every Day for a Week," 17 Oct. 2018 In this episode of Go To Bed With Me, Sabbat—who just launched a partnership with Evian water—walks us through his minimalist skin prep. Harper's Bazaar Staff, Harper's BAZAAR, "Luka Sabbat's Nighttime Skincare Routine Is Exactly What You'd Expect," 9 Oct. 2018 Do your prep for The Crown before season three starts Starting October 7 (through late January), the Museum of Fine Arts Houston (MFAH) will be filled with British royalty. Meredith Carey, Condé Nast Traveler, "What to Do in Houston in October 2018," 1 Oct. 2018 Cooking for a crowd can be complicated — the prep takes longer and there are more (a.k.a. Amanda Garrity, Good Housekeeping, "How Much Turkey Do I Need for Thanksgiving?," 27 Aug. 2018 Skip the whisk: Keep your dressing prep easy and use the jar method to emulsify your vinaigrette. Sarah Fritsche,, "Outerlands’ Salad With Burrata, Strawberries & Fennel," 29 June 2018 And be sure to avoid touching your eyes after your onion prep!, "6 Health Benefits of Onions," 22 June 2018 There wasn’t a moment in his prep that wasn’t enabled by a woke brand. Cam Wolf, GQ, "The Rules of the Gym, According to the Hot Dudes of ‘Insecure’," 21 June 2018 Just ask Ashley Graham, who got an oxygen facial on her boobs as part of her pre-Met Gala beauty prep., "These Celebrities Have Beauty Routines For Their Boobs," 9 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Clarifying Lotion, $13 Created by a dermatologist, this clarifying lotion comes in four formulations for different skin types helps to prep skin for moisturizer. Tiffany Dodson, SELF, "Ulta Is Having a 50 Percent Off Sale on Skin-Care—Here’s Everything I Want," 18 Jan. 2019 Before getting started, make sure to start with a quick dynamic warm-up to prep your body for the work ahead. Amy Marturana, SELF, "An Easy-to-Follow Lower-Body Strength Routine for Beginner Weight Lifters," 3 Jan. 2019 All that prep leading up to red carpet season could be simplified to this mantra: pay special attention to the face, neck, and décolleté. Mia Adorante, Harper's BAZAAR, "Celebrity Facialists Sound Off on Their Top Tips for Red Carpet-Worthy Skin," 28 Sep. 2018 Google has been adding new features to Classroom throughout the summer in order to prep for the upcoming fall semester, particularly with the recent launch of the Acer Chromebook Tab 10, which is the first tablet to run Chrome OS. Makena Kelly, The Verge, "Google is adding ARCore support to the Chromebook Tab 10 with Classroom updates," 7 Aug. 2018 To prep the skin, Baker used Dior Prestige La Lotion Essence de Rose and Sonia Roselli Water Balm Skin Prep. Jesa Marie Calaor, Allure, "How to Get Blake Lively's Hair and Makeup From A Simple Favor," 14 Sep. 2018 This morning in London, the Duchess of Sussex headed to the Hubb Community Kitchen at the Al Manaar Community Center to prep some meals for people in need. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "Meghan Markle Gets Into the Thanksgiving Spirit," 21 Nov. 2018 Here’s what mountaineering experts recommend to sufficiently prep for an epic hike without any relevant experience. Haley Shapley, SELF, "How to Hike a 14,000-Foot Mountain With No Prior Experience," 17 Nov. 2018 Theatrical releases beginning in 2019 won’t be available on Netflix, while Marvel Studios begins to prep a series of original series for the standalone service. Julia Alexander, The Verge, "Following in Luke Cage and Iron Fist’s footsteps," 30 Nov. 2018

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


1862, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1909, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

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Statistics for prep

Last Updated

17 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for prep

The first known use of prep was in 1862

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More Definitions for prep



English Language Learners Definition of prep

: to make yourself ready for something
: to make (someone or something) ready for something

Kids Definition of prep



\ ˈprep \

Medical Definition of prep

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the act or an instance of preparing a patient for a surgical operation the nurse had three preps to do
prepped; prepping

Medical Definition of prep (Entry 2 of 2)

: to prepare for a surgical operation or examination prep the patient for an appendectomy

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More from Merriam-Webster on prep

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with prep

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for prep

Nglish: Translation of prep for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of prep for Arabic Speakers

Comments on prep

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


to express emotion in a dramatic way

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