whit·​en | \ ˈ(h)wī-tᵊn How to pronounce whiten (audio) \
whitened; whitening\ ˈ(h)wīt-​niŋ How to pronounce whiten (audio) , -​ᵊn-​iŋ \

Definition of whiten

transitive verb

: to make white or whiter snow whitened the hills

intransitive verb

: to become white or whiter

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Synonyms & Antonyms for whiten



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Examples of whiten in a Sentence

His hair whitened as he aged. Bleach will whiten the linens. The new toothpaste whitens teeth.
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Recent Examples on the Web The one that performed best is based on barium sulfate, a compound used to whiten photo paper and cosmetics. ABC News, "Whitest white paint could help fight climate change," 25 Apr. 2021 All laundry detergents claim to remove stains, whiten, keep colors bright and generally refresh garments. Amanda Garrity, Good Housekeeping, "How to Do Laundry: A Step-by-Step Guide on the Right Way to Sort, Wash and Dry," 30 Mar. 2021 This Teeth Whitening Kit With Charcoal Gel from Bianco Smile takes less than 10 minutes to use and promises to whiten your teeth up to 14 shades brighter. Popular Science, "These dental hygiene tools will help keep your smile bright," 22 Feb. 2021 The toothbrush also removes up to 10 times more plaque than the average manual toothbrush and features three different modes: whiten, massage, and cleaning. Popular Science, "These dental hygiene tools will help keep your smile bright," 22 Feb. 2021 The secret gel takes less than 10 minutes to use and can whiten your teeth s much as 14 shades brighter with long-lasting results. Stack Commerce, Popular Science, "Start the new year by taking better care of your body from head to toe with these self-care steals," 25 Jan. 2021 Strips contain a low concentration of hydrogen peroxide in order to gently whiten your teeth over time. Hanna Horvath, NBC News, "The best at-home teeth whitening products, according to dentists," 14 Jan. 2021 Complete with 28 flavorless strips, or 14 treatments, the company claims that this kit can whiten teeth 25 times better than toothpaste—and a 4.5-star rating from nearly 14,000 Amazon shoppers would seem to back the hype. Melissa Lee, USA TODAY, "You can get $10 off your next $30 Amazon order—find out how," 19 Dec. 2020 Whitening products contain hydrogen peroxide, which is clinically proven to whiten teeth. Zoe Malin, NBC News, "New & Notable: Best new products from Away, Beats, June and more," 23 Nov. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Time Traveler for whiten

Time Traveler

The first known use of whiten was in the 15th century

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Statistics for whiten

Last Updated

29 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Whiten.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/whiten. Accessed 6 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for whiten



English Language Learners Definition of whiten

: to make (something) white or whiter or to become white or whiter


whit·​en | \ ˈhwī-tᵊn How to pronounce whiten (audio) , ˈwī- \
whitened; whitening

Kids Definition of whiten

: to make or become white or whiter Bleach whitens sheets.

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Comments on whiten

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