\ ˈsti-kē \
stickier; stickiest

Definition of sticky 

1a : adhesive

b(1) : viscous, gluey

(2) : coated with a sticky substance

2 : humid, muggy also : clammy

3 : tending to stick

4a : disagreeable, unpleasant came to a sticky end

b : awkward, stiff

c : difficult, problematic a sticky situation

5 : excessively sentimental : cloying

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Other words from sticky

stickily \ˈsti-kə-lē \ adverb
stickiness \ˈsti-kē-nəs \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for sticky


damp, humid, muggy, sultry



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Examples of sticky in a Sentence

The sap is very sticky. There is a sticky substance on the table. The paint was still sticky. The weather was hot and sticky.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Dolla $ign -- who has blossomed into a premier feature artist this year -- continues his hot streak with yet another sticky hook. Carl Lamarre, Billboard, "Fabolous & Ty Dolla $ign Team Up For Summer Banger 'Ooh Yea': Listen," 13 July 2018 Keeton, for his part, is just trying to make the most of a sticky situation. Elena Weissmann, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Meet Kenosha's Jamie 'Can Head' Keeton, the human suction cup," 12 July 2018 Finally, know going in that making this drink is messy, sticky work. Emily Spicer, San Antonio Express-News, "How to make piña coladas served in a pineapple," 11 July 2018 Humidity levels aren’t all that bad given the time of year, starting off the period moderate (dew points near 60) but becoming a little more sticky by Friday (dew points in the mid-60s). Jason Samenow, Washington Post, "D.C.-area forecast: Humidity to slowly return this week, but no extreme heat and low rain chances," 9 July 2018 The world’s most stylish took a dichotomous approach to the sticky situation, choosing clothes of either such full and waft-y proportions as to barely touch the body, or dresses so tiny as to have barely anything to touch. Edward Barsamian, Vogue, "10 Best Dressed: Week of July 9, 2018," 9 July 2018 There’s no sticky gloss in the tube — the lipstick unwinds from inside the cap and applies with sheer and shimmering coverage, thanks to a hint of Colombian kahai nut oil. Carolyne Zinko,, "Style Radar: SF museum’s latest fashion donation; 2 Chainz and Silicon Valley," 6 July 2018 What really gets me is the raspiness in her voice, which plays off the sticky sweetness of the song's lyrics., "New Music This Week: Ella Mai's Remix, Mala Rodríguez's Feminist Jam, & More," 6 July 2018 The Fun Zone is filled with inflatables, including a 30-foot obstacle course, the Velcro sticky wall and a pirate slide. Annie Alleman,, "Batavia Windmill City Fest continues to add free family fun," 5 July 2018

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

1688, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Phrases Related to sticky

sticky fingers

sticky tape

Statistics for sticky

Last Updated

17 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for sticky

The first known use of sticky was in 1688

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More Definitions for sticky



English Language Learners Definition of sticky

: having a substance (such as glue or honey) on it that things easily attach to : covered in a substance that things stick to

of a substance : tending to have things attach to it : tending to have things stick to it

: unpleasantly warm and humid


\ ˈsti-kē \
stickier; stickiest

Kids Definition of sticky

1 : tending to cling like glue : adhesive sticky syrup

2 : coated with a substance that sticks to things My fingers are sticky.

3 : muggy, humid a sticky day

4 : tending to become blocked or jammed sticky windows

Other words from sticky

stickiness noun

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Comments on sticky

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