relax

verb
re·​lax | \ ri-ˈlaks How to pronounce relax (audio) \
relaxed; relaxing; relaxes

Definition of relax

transitive verb

1 : to make less tense or rigid : slacken relaxed his grip
2 : to make less severe or stringent : modify relax immigration laws
3 : to deprive of energy, zeal, or strength of purpose
4 : to relieve from nervous tension
5 : to treat (hair) chemically in order to relax curls

intransitive verb

1 : to become lax, weak, or loose : rest
2 : to become less intense or severe hoped the committee would relax in its opposition
3 of a muscle or muscle fiber : to become inactive and lengthen
4 : to cast off social restraint, nervous tension, or anxiety couldn't relax in crowds
5 : to seek rest or recreation relax at the seashore
6 : to relieve constipation
7 : to attain equilibrium following the abrupt removal of some influence (such as light, high temperature, or stress)

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Other Words from relax

relaxer noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for relax

Synonyms

chill, chill out [slang], decompress, de-stress, loosen up, mellow (out), unwind, wind down

Antonyms

tense (up)

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Examples of relax in a Sentence

The muscles in my neck and shoulders should relax after a nice hot shower. A hot shower relaxed the tight muscles in my neck and shoulders. I can't relax with all this noise! Just relax, there's nothing to worry about. Try to relax and enjoy the ride.
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Recent Examples on the Web

After all, the arrival of warmer weather brings endless opportunities for carefree beach moments and relaxing by the poolside. Allure, "The 25 Best Plus-Size Swimsuits and Bikinis to Buy This Summer," 10 Apr. 2019 All floor plans have open-concept living spaces, gourmet kitchens, private master suites and relaxing outdoor spaces. Shea Homes, The Seattle Times, "Visitors can tour new models, quick-move-in homes," 29 Mar. 2019 Beauty Products 14 Slides In my humble opinion, a towel can make or break a relaxing bathing experience. Allure, "14 Soft, Fluffy Bath Towels That Feel as Luxurious as They Look," 26 Mar. 2019 When Kourt posted a relaxing pic of herself vacationing in Italy, another mommy shamer commented asking about her childrens' whereabouts. Yerin Kim, Seventeen, "10 Times the Kardashians Hilariously Clapped Back At Instagram Haters," 19 Mar. 2019 Create a relaxing sanctuary by peppering in soft textures in ivory hues. Madeleine Bokan, House Beautiful, "Here's Why Texture Is an Interior Designer's Secret Weapon," 6 Mar. 2019 These colors are inherently more intense, which is why muted tones tend to have a relaxing effect. Lucia Tonelli, ELLE Decor, "14 Calming Paint Colors That Will Change the Way You Live," 9 Jan. 2019 Harry Potter might not have ever been able to open that golden egg in the Goblet of Fire without running a relaxing bath. Gabe Bergado, Teen Vogue, "Pottermore Reminded "Harry Potter" Fans That Wizards Would Get Rid of Poop Using Magic," 4 Jan. 2019 Most responsible parents know to limit their children’s screen time, but there’s nothing quite as relaxing as handing your children their favorite movie and giving yourself time with your music playlist. Kim Komando, Fox News, "Bitcoin crashing, Netflix offline and more: Tech Q&A," 22 Sep. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for relax

Middle English, from Latin relaxare, from re- + laxare to loosen, from laxus loose — more at slack

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Learn More about relax

Dictionary Entries near relax

relatrix

relatum

relaunch

relax

relaxant

relaxate

relaxation

Statistics for relax

Last Updated

19 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for relax

The first known use of relax was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for relax

relax

verb

English Language Learners Definition of relax

: to become or to cause (something) to become less tense, tight, or stiff
: to stop feeling nervous or worried
: to spend time resting or doing something enjoyable especially after you have been doing work

relax

verb
re·​lax | \ ri-ˈlaks How to pronounce relax (audio) \
relaxed; relaxing

Kids Definition of relax

1 : to make or become loose or less tense Relax your muscles. She relaxed her grip on the reins.
2 : to make or become less severe or strict Mom relaxed the rules for the summer.
3 : to become calm and free from stress
4 : to seek rest or enjoyment You can relax at the beach.
re·​lax | \ ri-ˈlaks How to pronounce relax (audio) \

Medical Definition of relax

1 : to slacken or make less tense or rigid alternately contracting and relaxing their muscles
2 : to relieve from nervous tension
3 : to relieve from constipation medications to relax the bowels

intransitive verb

1 of a muscle or muscle fiber : to return to an inactive or resting state especially : to become inactive and lengthen
2 : to cast off social restraint, nervous tension, or anxiety couldn't relax in crowds

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More from Merriam-Webster on relax

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with relax

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for relax

Spanish Central: Translation of relax

Nglish: Translation of relax for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of relax for Arabic Speakers

Comments on relax

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