\ ˈskəf How to pronounce scuff (audio) \
scuffed; scuffing; scuffs

Definition of scuff

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to walk without lifting the feet : shuffle
b : to poke or shuffle a foot in exploration or embarrassment
2 : to become scratched, chipped, or roughened by wear a countertop that won't scuff

transitive verb

2a : to scrape (the feet) along a surface while walking or back and forth while standing
b : to poke at with the toe
3 : to scratch, gouge, or wear away the surface of scuffed my shoes



Definition of scuff (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a noise of or as if of scuffing
b : the act or an instance of scuffing
c : a mark or injury caused by scuffing
2 : a flat-soled slipper without quarter or heel strap — compare mule

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Synonyms for scuff

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of scuff in a Sentence

Verb She scuffed down the hall towards her room. scuffed up her shoes by rubbing her feet under the rung of the chair Noun She slid into her scuffs and headed into the kitchen.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb According to the makers, the carbon steel is a bit tougher, while excessive scraping and scratching may scuff the stainless version — but this is only an aesthetic issue. Kate Bratskeir, CNN Underscored, "The Proclamation Duo does it all in the kitchen with just two pans," 29 Oct. 2020 Trump had headed to Cleveland determined to scuff up Biden by talking about his son Hunter Biden’s allegedly corrupt involvement with the Ukrainian energy firm Burisma. Todd J. Gillman, Dallas News, "Mutual contempt at first Trump-Biden debate, where death and taxes also feature prominently," 30 Sep. 2020 The rubber toe cap and abrasion-resistant heel cup are effective at protecting areas that can typically scuff and wear, shortening the life of a work boot. Popular Mechanics Editors, Popular Mechanics, "The 10 Best Work Boots for Any Type of Job," 19 Aug. 2020 Your floors should now be scuff-free and ready to go! Emma Bazilian, House Beautiful, "The Best Way to Clean Marble Floors," 28 May 2020 Police believe a rock was thrown at the passenger-side window, which had scuff marks on it. Bob Sandrick, cleveland, "Two men fight twice in their yards; suspicious trespasser returns to ice cream shop: Brook Park Police Blotter," 5 June 2020 The big Dutchman was only able to scuff a volley down the middle of the goal., "Liverpool 4-0 Brighton: Salah Breaks Premier League Record as Liverpool Blow Away Seagulls," 13 May 2018 Samsung says there’s a protective layer atop the glass and that’s what testers are able to scuff. Sohee Kim,, "Review: Can Samsung’s New Z Flip Convert iPhone Fans?," 18 Feb. 2020 Ninety-six minutes in, as Old Trafford waited for the final whistle, for confirmation that there was something to celebrate, Ederson scuffed a clearance straight to Scott McTominay, who had come on as a late substitute. Rory Smith, New York Times, "The Bruno Fernandes Effect: How Manchester United Turned the Tables," 8 Mar. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Small enough to fit in a glove box, this kit includes a tire rasp and insertion tools, a tube scuff pad, six assorted patches, five 4-inch tire plugs and a small tube of rubber cement. Hannah Drown, cleveland, "15 essential items for winter emergencies, snowstorms to keep in your car," 1 Dec. 2020 Without details about what finish the factory used, Frank Glowacki, the brand director at Rust-Oleum, recommended scuff-sanding the surface, then cleaning with a non-sudsing cleaner. Washington Post, "Why does the paint keep peeling on my bathroom vanity?," 23 Nov. 2020 First, use a clean microfiber cloth to wipe down your screen; remove dust, scuffs and any other surface-level fingerprints if possible. Zee Krstic, Good Housekeeping, "How to Clean and Disinfect Your Laptop Screen," 13 Mar. 2020 For specific scuffs or marks, try taking a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser to them with a little elbow grease. Rachel Chang, Condé Nast Traveler, "How to Clean Your Luggage After a Trip, Because Germs," 20 Apr. 2020 Maybe players didn’t want to pop amphetamines, cork their bats, scuff up the baseballs or take steroids, but these were trends, producing great results. Bruce Jenkins,, "Astros’ rivals may be complaining, but history should remain unchanged," 17 Jan. 2020 Patrice recognized her brown shoes with the scuffs painted over. New York Times, "‘The Night Watchman,’ by Louise Erdrich: An Excerpt," 3 Mar. 2020 When the horse was unwrapped from its white shroud of protective plastic, curators carefully brushed on wax to cover any scuffs. Washington Post, "In the capital of the Confederacy, a new monument and a chance to change the narrative," 10 Dec. 2019 The once pristine walls are marked with dents and scuffs from when Jillian learned to steer her power wheelchair with her tongue. Daniela Porat, ProPublica, "Evenflo, Maker of the “Big Kid” Booster Seat, Put Profits Over Child Safety," 6 Feb. 2020

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


1768, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a


1899, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for scuff


origin unknown

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Statistics for scuff

Cite this Entry

“Scuff.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
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More Definitions for scuff



English Language Learners Definition of scuff

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to make a mark or scratch in the surface of (something) by scraping it
: to walk without lifting your feet : to drag your feet while you walk



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

: a mark that is made by scuffing something
US : slippers that are open at the heel


\ ˈskəf How to pronounce scuff (audio) \
scuffed; scuffing

Kids Definition of scuff

1 : to scrape the feet while walking
2 : to mark or scratch by scraping Don't scuff your good shoes.

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More from Merriam-Webster on scuff

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for scuff

Nglish: Translation of scuff for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of scuff for Arabic Speakers

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