soap

noun
\ ˈsōp How to pronounce soap (audio) \

Definition of soap

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a cleansing and emulsifying agent made usually by action of alkali on fat or fatty acids and consisting essentially of sodium or potassium salts of such acids
b : a salt of a fatty acid and a metal

soap

verb
soaped; soaping; soaps

Definition of soap (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to rub soap over or into
2 : flatter

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for soap

Synonyms: Noun

cleaner, cleanser, detergent

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of soap in a Sentence

Noun

Make sure you use soap and water to wash your hands. The store sells many different brands of liquid soaps. Her first acting job was on a soap.

Verb

I soap my hair first when I take a shower. He soaped and rinsed the car.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

It can easily be vacuumed and spot-cleaned with mild soap and water. Monique Valeris, ELLE Decor, "What is a Jute Rug?," 20 Feb. 2019 The first step will be a thorough washing of the headlight lenses with car soap and water. Zachary Palmer, Popular Mechanics, "How to Clean Your Headlights and Make Them Shine Like New," 2 Aug. 2018 The Eve Lom cleanser, long a favorite of beauty industry insiders, is also on sale for a cool $30 instead of $50, and this Popsicle bar soap is too cute for words and even sweeter at that price. Allure, "The Best Sales This Week That Are Not Amazon Prime Day," 17 July 2018 The collar, produced locally, came with instructions and the recommendation to use coarse soap. Dennis Hohenberger, Courant Community, "Historian Bob Bell Examines 'Makin' Stuff In Windsor'," 2 July 2018 Some gardeners wash them off and others use an insecticidal soap. Tom Maccubbin, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Find the ideal spot to plant hydrangeas," 14 Apr. 2018 Once a season, scrub with Dawn dish soap and water. Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "Why You Should Be Using Outdoor Fabric for Basically Everything," 18 Apr. 2019 Shares of companies selling everyday household goods such as cereal, shampoo and dish soap are underperforming the S&P 500 in January. Jessica Menton, WSJ, "Consumer-Staples Stocks Fall Out of Favor as Investors Embrace Risk," 30 Jan. 2019 To verify that surface tension did indeed play a role in the gecko's surface skimming ability, the researchers added a surfactant (dish soap) to the water. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Geckos’ new superpower is running on water; now we know how they do it," 6 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Bush soaped down her new stepchildren and outfitted them with her own kids’ clothes. Gillian Brockell, Washington Post, "Abraham Lincoln’s ‘angel mother’ and the second ‘mama’ who outlived him," 12 May 2018 Justin Jones was soaping his 309-pound body when his phone rang. Dan Woike, latimes.com, "Chargers break down where they improved most in the NFL draft and why they didn't draft a quarterback," 29 Apr. 2018 Kids strung ropes across sidewalks to trip people in the dark, tied the doorknobs of opposing apartments together, mowed down shrubs, upset swill barrels, rattled or soaped windows, and, once, filled the streets of Catalina Island with boats. Lesley Bannatyne, Smithsonian, "When Halloween Was All Tricks and No Treats," 27 Oct. 2017 Wait for the drop while getting soaped up: This party involves fives hours of EDM music, thousands of gallons of foam, flashing lights, and roughly 7,000 people. Tarpley Hitt, Philly.com, "The world's largest foam party and three other things to do down the shore, June 30-July 2," 28 June 2017 In the 1950s and 1960s, Bradley Group Showers marketed its water-saving column showers with posters of topless schoolboys happily soaping down together. J.y. Chua, The Atlantic, "Bathing in Controversy," 2 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'soap.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of soap

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1585, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for soap

Noun

Middle English sope, from Old English sāpe; akin to Old High German seifa soap

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about soap

Dictionary Entries near soap

soak up

Soan

so-and-so

soap

soap apple

soapbark

soapberry

Statistics for soap

Last Updated

19 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for soap

The first known use of soap was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for soap

soap

noun

English Language Learners Definition of soap

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a substance that is used for washing something

soap

verb

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

: to rub soap over or into (someone or something)

soap

noun
\ ˈsōp How to pronounce soap (audio) \

Kids Definition of soap

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a substance that is used for washing

soap

verb
soaped; soaping

Kids Definition of soap (Entry 2 of 2)

: to rub a cleaning substance over or into something

soap

noun
\ ˈsōp How to pronounce soap (audio) \

Medical Definition of soap

1 : a cleansing and emulsifying agent made usually by action of alkali on fat or fatty acids and consisting essentially of sodium or potassium salts of such acids
2 : a salt of a fatty acid and a metal

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on soap

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with soap

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for soap

Spanish Central: Translation of soap

Nglish: Translation of soap for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of soap for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about soap

Comments on soap

What made you want to look up soap? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a strong desire or propensity

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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