se·​bum ˈsē-bəm How to pronounce sebum (audio)
: fatty lubricant matter secreted by sebaceous glands of the skin

Examples of sebum in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Dry skin is often related to the underproduction of sebum. Holistapet, Discover Magazine, 3 Apr. 2024 Additionally, vitamin A helps with the production of sebum, which keeps hair moisturized and healthy. Amber Smith, Discover Magazine, 1 Aug. 2023 Makeup removers are for removing all forms of makeup, but cleansers, which come in many forms, will help remove sweat, sebum, dirt, and impurities from your skin, says Dr. Saedi. Iman Balagam, Vogue, 25 Jan. 2024 Niacinamide can be a game changer for acne-prone skin, working to curb the production of sebum, reduce inflammation, and reduce the appearance of post-acne marks. Macaela MacKenzie, Glamour, 15 Feb. 2024 Those with an oily skin type tend to have excess sebum, which can lead to buildup under the skin, and thus, acne. Madison Yauger, Peoplemag, 9 Feb. 2024 Finding the right face wash can be a game-changer for those dealing with excess sebum oil and shine. Sarah Bradley, Health, 8 Aug. 2023 The former, with an E, is naturally produced by the body’s sebaceous glands and, to get more specific, is part of sebum, Mary Stevenson, MD, assistant professor of dermatology at NYU Langone Medical Center, tells SELF. Jenna Ryu, SELF, 9 Feb. 2024 Some of these include evening hyperpigmentation, brightening, and my personal favorite: balancing sebum production. Talia Gutierrez, Allure, 24 Jan. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'sebum.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Latin, tallow, grease

First Known Use

circa 1860, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of sebum was circa 1860

Dictionary Entries Near sebum

Cite this Entry

“Sebum.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Apr. 2024.

Medical Definition


se·​bum ˈsēb-əm How to pronounce sebum (audio)
: fatty lubricant matter secreted by sebaceous glands of the skin

More from Merriam-Webster on sebum

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!