prep·​py | \ ˈpre-pē How to pronounce preppy (audio) \
variants: or preppie
plural preppies

Definition of preppy

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a student at or a graduate of a preparatory school
2 : a person deemed to dress or behave like a preppy


variants: or preppie

Definition of preppy (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : relating to, characteristic of, or being a preppy
2 : relating to or being a style of dress characterized especially by classic clothing and neat appearance

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Other Words from preppy


preppily \ ˈpre-​pə-​lē How to pronounce preppy (audio) \ adverb
preppiness \ ˈpre-​pē-​nəs How to pronounce preppy (audio) \ noun

Examples of preppy in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun And Brooklyn’s Blackstock & Weber peddles preppy, two-toned, $325 penny loafers and croc-embossed $345 models that pulse with a streetwear-ish vitality. Jacob Gallagher, WSJ, 7 June 2021 Yang in his preppy overcoat and button-down, surrounded by a diverse crowd of scraggly haired cool kids. Washington Post, 1 June 2021 The preppy yet colorful collection is full of pieces that can take you from a casual beachside walk to lunch in the sun (like this Women’s OG Fun Shirt Dress, £170). Angela Lei, Forbes, 17 May 2021 The actress was photographed out and about in Beverly Hills wearing a Versace abstract striped cardigan sweater with a white oversized shirtdress, creating a preppy, cinched silhouette. Shelby Ying Hyde, Harper's BAZAAR, 7 Apr. 2021 As with many of her co-stars — notably the lower-class striver Cary Grant and the Park Avenue preppy Humphrey Bogart — her screen image was much the opposite of her biography, which was plagued by loss and suffering and near-starvation. Kyle Smith, National Review, 26 Mar. 2021 On one side, a large audience pressed around a group of preppy-looking young men wearing plaid shirts, windbreakers, khakis, and sunglasses. Luke Mogelson, The New Yorker, 15 Jan. 2021 Despite being thrust in the franchise that gave the world Serena van der Woodsen’s and Blair Waldorf’s spin on preppy, Lind is more about Parisian chic. Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, 15 Dec. 2020 Case in point: Prince George sported a preciously preppy striped sweater on an outing to the London Palladium with his parents and siblings. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, 11 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Combining tattoos and beards with the clean lines of khakis and Fred Perrys, the Proud Boys blended aspects of skinhead and punk style with a retrograde, preppy look. Ej Dickson, Rolling Stone, 15 June 2021 Zaya took the preppy approach, wearing a white crew-neck tee with a black Prada bandeau and flowing midi skirt. Bianca Betancourt, Harper's BAZAAR, 2 June 2021 The Duchess dressed appropriately for the activity, putting on a preppy white cable knit sweater, with dress pants and her same Supergas. Annie Goldsmith, Town & Country, 27 May 2021 On Instagram, entire lifestyle brands have embraced the sudden demand for equestrian style, like Recreational Habits, which launched in the pandemic and features a curated mood board titled @rhequestrianclub and preppy-athletic apparel. Eliza Huber,, 9 May 2021 From classically preppy collegiate-style sweaters to Royal Tenenbaum-esque accessories, these separates, paired together, are a match made in heaven. Sara Holzman, Marie Claire, 18 May 2021 The shirt is a preppy staple, a streetwear signifier, and (sometimes) even a school uniform. Sarah Adams, Town & Country, 18 May 2021 But today, American preppy style isn’t limited to the upper class—it’s been democratized quite a bit thanks to improvements in production technology. Stefanie Waldek, House Beautiful, 14 May 2021 And the clothes are incredibly wearable, thanks to a sporty-preppy vibe. Katie Chang, Travel + Leisure, 7 May 2021

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


1880, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1900, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for preppy


prep entry 1

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Learn More About preppy

Statistics for preppy

Last Updated

17 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Preppy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for preppy



English Language Learners Definition of preppy

US, informal + often disapproving : someone who dresses or acts like a student at a prep school (such as by wearing neat, somewhat formal clothing or by using particular words and phrases)

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