showier; showiest
: making an attractive show : striking
a showy orchid
: given to or marked by a flashy often tasteless display
showily adverb
showiness noun
Choose the Right Synonym for showy

showy, pretentious, ostentatious mean given to excessive outward display.

showy implies an imposing or striking appearance but usually suggests cheapness or poor taste.

the performers' showy costumes

pretentious implies an appearance of importance not justified by the thing's value or the person's standing.

a pretentious parade of hard words

ostentatious stresses vainglorious display or parade.

the ostentatious summer homes of the rich

Examples of showy in a Sentence

Perhaps you should wear something a little less showy. orchid plants are known for their huge showy flowers
Recent Examples on the Web This awkwardness is due to a disagreement between Mercury in your intense 8th house and Chiron in your showy 5th house., New York Daily News, 28 June 2024 Scientists have also shown a recent surge of interest in another category of feathers: display feathers, the showy feathers that help to attract mates. Michael B. Habib, Scientific American, 16 Apr. 2024 But Nash-Betts is very good in an arguably less showy role in Dahmer. Jen Chaney, Vulture, 12 Jan. 2024 After the composer’s death, a hokey big operatic ending got tacked on with a showy duet by a second-rate composer, Franco Alfano. Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times, 6 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for showy 

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

Word History

First Known Use

1697, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Time Traveler
The first known use of showy was in 1697

Dictionary Entries Near showy

Cite this Entry

“Showy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


showier; showiest
: attracting attention : striking
showy blossoms
: given to or marked by much outward display : gaudy
showy jewelry
showily adverb
showiness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on showy

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