1 of 2


: an article of clothing put on by being stepped into: such as
: a shoe resembling but usually having a higher vamp than a pump and having concealed elastic to adjust the fit
: short panties for women
usually used in plural
step-in adjective

step in

2 of 2


stepped in; stepping in; steps in

intransitive verb

: to intervene in an affair or dispute
: to act as a replacement
: to make a brief informal visit

Examples of step-in in a Sentence

Verb I just stepped in to say hi on my way to class. couldn't find anyone to step in for me so that I could take a break from my caregiving duties
Recent Examples on the Web
The entry floor holds the main bath plus two bedrooms; both have mini-split heat pumps, and the primary offers a walk-in closet and private bath with step-in double shower. Jon Gorey,, 8 Sep. 2023 The primary bedroom features a walk-in closet, a spacious bath with double vanities and step-in shower, and sliders to a private balcony. Jon Gorey,, 25 Aug. 2023 Three more bedrooms share a stylish new double-entry bath with step-in shower. Jon Gorey,, 21 July 2023 The frame uses a three-point mounting system to increase power transfer, control, and stability with this step-in design. Kevin Brouillard, Travel + Leisure, 28 June 2023 An OrthoLite sockliner improves step-in comfort as well. Gaby Keiderling, Harper's BAZAAR, 22 June 2023 Upstairs, three bedrooms share a bath with jetted soaking tub and step-in shower. Jon Gorey,, 2 June 2023 The primary bedroom has a private bath with step-in shower. Jon Gorey,, 2 June 2023 That ruling prompted Attorney General Tim Griffin to file an emergency motion Tuesday asking the Supreme Court to step-in and overturn Wright’s order. Neal Earley, Arkansas Online, 1 June 2023
Around 2015, Stipe stepped in to produce a record that his friends in the band Fischerspooner were struggling to finish. Jon Mooallem, New York Times, 3 Dec. 2023 Silberstein stepped in to raise Rhonda as his own, and after Tracee was born, Diana and Silberstein had one more child — Tracee's younger sister, Chudney. Alex Gurley, Peoplemag, 3 Dec. 2023 The Roadrunner blurs the boundary between a number of existing weapons in pursuit of economic efficiency in air defense and surveillance, and could represent a new step in the evolution of missiles, drones and other unmanned flying devices. Sam Dean, Los Angeles Times, 1 Dec. 2023 The deals mark another significant step in AGC Studios’ drive to bringing theatrical features from the Middle East and North Africa region to global audiences. Leo Barraclough, Variety, 30 Nov. 2023 When the band fired MacGowan mid-tour a few months later, Strummer stepped in as a temporary lead singer, even performing a few Clash songs (a recording of a Strummer-era Pogues concert can be heard on 2013’s 30 Years box set). Al Shipley, SPIN, 30 Nov. 2023 Grandmothers often step in to take care of their child’s kids, as well as aunts and uncles who open up their homes for their nieces and nephews during hard times. Brennan Nevada Johnson, Essence, 30 Nov. 2023 The first step in the right direction is to create a comprehensive financial plan entailing goals, budgeting, cash flow projection, frequency of performance review or even seeking professional advice. Expert Panel®, Forbes, 29 Nov. 2023 Hours after the meeting concluded, the White House announced that Israel would begin four-hour pauses in northern Gaza to allow Palestinians to flee hostilities — a welcome step in the eyes of the White House but one that fell short of U.S. requests for multiday pauses. John Hudson, Washington Post, 28 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'step-in.' 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


1921, in the meaning defined above


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of step-in was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near step-in

Cite this Entry

“Step-in.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


: an article of clothing (as a dress or shoes) that can be put on by being stepped into
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