sand·​pa·​per | \ ˈsan(d)-ˌpā-pər How to pronounce sandpaper (audio) \

Definition of sandpaper

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: paper covered on one side with abrasive material (such as sand) glued fast and used for smoothing and polishing


sandpapered; sandpapering; sandpapers

Definition of sandpaper (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to rub with or as if with sandpaper

Other Words from sandpaper


sandpapery \ ˈsan(d)-​ˌpā-​p(ə-​)rē How to pronounce sandpaper (audio) \ adjective

Examples of sandpaper in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun To gain traction, scour them with sandpaper; Pimienta uses scissors or a knife to make scratches all over the soles. Jaime Lowe, New York Times, 7 Dec. 2021 The maker of wooden toys gets nearly all its lumber from nearby mills and has little trouble buying lacquer, paint and sandpaper from its Vermont suppliers. Washington Post, 9 Nov. 2021 The semiconductor shortage is impacting companies that don’t directly rely on computer chips, cutting into sales of glass, paint and industrial sandpaper. Austen Hufford, WSJ, 30 Oct. 2021 If steps are slippery, consider adding traction tape, which has sandpaper-like grit on top. Washington Post, 29 Oct. 2021 Lightly sand the wood inside the chest with a fine-grade sandpaper, which will release a fresh cedar smell. Washington Post, 18 Nov. 2021 The Bruins could have used his sandpaper vs. the Flyers., 22 Oct. 2021 Other new faces Weatherby, 23, and Raska, 20, are expected to provide size and sandpaper on San Jose’s reformed fourth line. Ross Mckeon, San Francisco Chronicle, 10 Oct. 2021 This type of scraper works much faster than sandpaper, which tends to clog until bare wood is exposed. Popular Mechanics Editors, Popular Mechanics, 1 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Unlike Billie or Lana or Ariana, all of whom are sandpapering their aesthetics down to the micron, Lizzo is full of surprise, and hopefully will remain that way. Jon Caramanica, New York Times, 23 Jan. 2020

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


1755, in the meaning defined above


1846, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for sandpaper

Time Traveler

The first known use of sandpaper was in 1755

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Statistics for sandpaper

Last Updated

2 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Sandpaper.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for sandpaper



English Language Learners Definition of sandpaper

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: stiff paper that has a rough surface on one side and that is rubbed against something (such as a piece of wood) to make it smooth



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

: to make (something) smooth by rubbing it with sandpaper


sand·​pa·​per | \ ˈsand-ˌpā-pər How to pronounce sandpaper (audio) \

Kids Definition of sandpaper

: paper that has rough material (as sand) glued on one side and is used for smoothing and polishing


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