re·​flec·​tive | \ri-ˈflek-tiv \

Definition of reflective 

1 : capable of reflecting light, images, or sound waves

3 : of, relating to, or caused by reflection reflective glare

5 : reflecting something : indicative how fashion is reflective of society— Glenda Bailey

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Other Words from reflective

reflectively adverb
reflectiveness noun
reflectivity \ˌrē-​ˌflek-​ˈti-​və-​tē, ri-​ \ noun

Did You Know?

Reflective people are people who reflect on things--that is, look back at things that have been done or said in order to think calmly and quietly about them. Most reflective people would agree with Socrates that (as he told the jury that would soon sentence him to death) "The unexamined life is not worth living". Reflective people tend to be a bit philosophical and intellectual. But almost everyone has reflective moods; gazing into a fireplace or a campfire seems to do it to almost everyone.

Examples of reflective in a Sentence

the reflective glare of the shiny metal She was in a very reflective mood.

Recent Examples on the Web

His most recent album, The Mountain, is reflective of how his family inspires his music. Marie Milano, Country Living, "How Dierks Bentley and Cassidy Black Went From Childhood Sweethearts to Husband and Wife," 13 Nov. 2018 And if what viewers have seen so far is reflective of what the rest of season 3 is going to be like, — heartbreaking, mysterious, revelatory, etc. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'This Is Us' Fans Completely Lost It Last Night Over Toby's Joke," 3 Oct. 2018 Maier was often her own subject, photographing herself in mirrors, shop windows, and other reflective surfaces. National Geographic, "These Famous Women Artists Changed the World With Their Self-Portraits," 24 May 2018 That would make store mirrors, then, the reflective-surface equivalent of a Snapchat selfie. Chelsea Peng, Marie Claire, "Everything That's Wrong with Store Fitting Rooms: An Exasperated List," 21 Oct. 2016 To get the reflective look, Yepez used Kérastase Resistance Ciment Thermique Blow Dry Primer, Densifique Densimorphose Hair Mousse, and the Crème Magistrale Mask. Wendy Sy, Allure, ""Glass Hair" Is the Shiny New Trend All Your Favorite Celebrities Are Rocking," 15 Aug. 2018 The speeches can be funny, serious, reflective, but Sef Scott’s speech was inspirational. Natalie Dreier, ajc, "Senior with autism stuns crowd with graduation speech," 14 June 2018 Each episode ends with a satisfying resolution, that is not at all reflective of how real-life adults solve their problems., "The Soothing Effect Of The Bold Type's White Feminism," 13 June 2018 In conversation, Bloom is candid, reflective, and sincere—but with a natural talent for knowing when to veer off into a witty aside or a wicked joke. Scott Meslow, GQ, "Rachel Bloom Has a Lot to Say," 13 June 2018

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

1627, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

13 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for reflective

The first known use of reflective was in 1627

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English Language Learners Definition of reflective

: causing light, sound, or heat to move away : reflecting light, sound, or heat

: relating to or caused by light that reflects off a surface

: thinking carefully about something


re·​flec·​tive | \ri-ˈflek-tiv \

Medical Definition of reflective 

1 : capable of reflecting light, images, or sound waves

2 : of, relating to, or caused by reflection reflective glare of the snow

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More from Merriam-Webster on reflective

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with reflective

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for reflective

Spanish Central: Translation of reflective

Nglish: Translation of reflective for Spanish Speakers

Comments on reflective

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