sug·​ar·​coat | \ ˈshu̇-gər-ˌkōt How to pronounce sugarcoat (audio) \
sugarcoated; sugarcoating; sugarcoats

Definition of sugarcoat

transitive verb

1 : to coat with sugar
2 : to make superficially attractive or palatable

Examples of sugarcoat in a Sentence

She has very strong opinions, and she doesn't try to sugarcoat them.
Recent Examples on the Web Alaska didn't sugarcoat the problems, issuing a detailed public apology in the blog post. Dawn Gilbertson, USA TODAY, "Alaska Airlines says 'we dropped the ball,' apologizes for 'awful holiday travel experience'," 23 Dec. 2019 Monique doesn’t sugarcoat things, and Devon has displayed an uncanny evenness through hardship. Jon Blau, Indianapolis Star, "IU football: Devon Matthews enjoys a true homecoming for Gator Bowl," 2 Jan. 2020 SportsPulse: No need to sugarcoat it, Conference championship weekend is going to be dramatic. Greg Moore, azcentral, "College Football Playoff selection committee should pick number of teams every year," 6 Dec. 2019 There’s no sugarcoating just how much injuries have decimated USC’s depth over the last two weeks. Ryan Kartje, Los Angeles Times, "Serious injuries rob USC of more key players: ‘It’s going to take some time’," 21 Oct. 2019 The murderous battles and routed armies of the early 19th century are all over this story, albeit sugarcoated for children. Adrian Daub, Longreads, "All Hail the Rat King," 13 Dec. 2019 Chris Solari and Graham Couch, Detroit Free Press LAHAINA, Hawaii — Tom Izzo did not sugarcoat Michigan State’s lone loss in the Maui Invitational. Chris Solari, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan State basketball learns about itself as Duke visits East Lansing on Tuesday," 1 Dec. 2019 In the end, there’s no sugarcoating the sting of their success. As the Rockies flounder, a couple of former draft picks who were homegrown in the Colorado farm system are flourishing. Kyle Newman, The Denver Post, "Newman: Breakout performances by Mike Tauchman, Tom Murphy more salt in the open wound of a disappointing Rockies season," 17 Sep. 2019 And even if Attal sugarcoats his ending in a way that feels unnecessary, the rest of his movie has a truthful sting to it. Jordan Mintzer, The Hollywood Reporter, "'My Dog Stupid' ('Mon chien Stupide'): Film Review," 31 Oct. 2019

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

1858, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sugarcoat

back-formation from sugarcoated

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about sugarcoat

Time Traveler for sugarcoat

Time Traveler

The first known use of sugarcoat was in 1858

See more words from the same year

Statistics for sugarcoat

Last Updated

22 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Sugarcoat.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 24 January 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for sugarcoat


How to pronounce sugarcoat (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of sugarcoat

: to talk about or describe (something) in a way that makes it seem more pleasant or acceptable than it is

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on sugarcoat

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sugarcoat

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sugarcoat

Britannica English: Translation of sugarcoat for Arabic Speakers

Comments on sugarcoat

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


a feeling of well-being or elation

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Intact Latin Quiz

  • roman tablet
  • What did focus mean in Latin?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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