un·​con·​ven·​tion·​al | \ ˌən-kən-ˈvench-nəl How to pronounce unconventional (audio) , -ˈven(t)-shə-nᵊl\

Definition of unconventional

: not conventional : not bound by or in accordance with convention : being out of the ordinary an unconventional outfit an unconventional thinker

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from unconventional

unconventionality \ ˌən-​kən-​ˌven(t)-​shə-​ˈna-​lə-​tē How to pronounce unconventionality (audio) \ noun
unconventionally adverb

Examples of unconventional in a Sentence

Her lifestyle is rather unconventional. the Shakers acquired their name because of their unconventional practice of dancing with shaking movements during worship

Recent Examples on the Web

In addition to her killer frame and contagious smile, Arias has become known for her unapologetic and unconventional workouts in airports, staircases, and hotel rooms. Akili King, Vogue, "With Followers Like Gabrielle Union and SZA, Health Coach Massy Arias Pushes the Boundaries of a Gym Routine," 15 Feb. 2019 Cocktails lean towards innovative takes on classics, with the help of a host of unconventional and hard-to-find ingredients (ever tried smoked mandarin orange tea syrup?). Andrea Bennett, Condé Nast Traveler, "3 Best Day Trips from Las Vegas," 5 Mar. 2018 Unlike the network's other cult drama, The Village is centered on an unconventional family of neighbors who live in the same Brooklyn apartment building (called The Village, for obvious reasons). Amanda Garrity, Good Housekeeping, "The Cast of 'The Village' Will Apparently Make You Cry Even Harder Than 'This Is Us'," 19 Mar. 2019 Cardi B also inspired some memes with her unconventional red carpet dress shell. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "13 Grammy Memes That Will Leave You Hysterical Laughing," 11 Feb. 2019 So the tailor recommended a somewhat unconventional solution: Get a bra strap extender. Rachel Nussbaum, Glamour, "The $7 Product That Makes My Too-Tight Bras Wearable," 25 Oct. 2018 Hughley has long been known for his feisty takes and unconventional, yet practical views. Brandon T. Harden, Philly.com, "Ahead of filming his Netflix special at the Kimmel Center, comedian D.L. Hughley talks Cosby, Kanye West and Starbucks," 9 May 2018 This isn’t the first time McDormand has made headlines for being unconventional. Alexia Fernandez, PEOPLE.com, "Frances McDormand Steals the Show with Massive Blue Headpiece and Cape at the Met Gala," 7 May 2018 Andi Mack premiered less than a year ago and already the unconventional Mack family and Andi's gang of friends have worked their way straight into your heart! Noelle Devoe, Seventeen, "The Cast of "Andi Mack" Reveals Their Deepest, Darkest Set Secrets," 5 Mar. 2018

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

1835, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about unconventional

Statistics for unconventional

Last Updated

21 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for unconventional

The first known use of unconventional was in 1835

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for unconventional



English Language Learners Definition of unconventional

: very different from the things that are used or accepted by most people : not traditional or usual : not conventional

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on unconventional

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unconventional

Spanish Central: Translation of unconventional

Nglish: Translation of unconventional for Spanish Speakers

Comments on unconventional

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


having no equal

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


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!