: mentally or emotionally discomposed : upset, agitated

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The wig in wigged-out is the one you don to change or enhance your appearance. Wig has been in use since the late 17th century, when it was adopted as a clipped form of periwig, itself denoting a manufactured covering of natural or synthetic hair for the head. The source of periwig is Middle French perruque (source also of the synonym peruque). In the American slang of the mid-20th century, the word wig was moving into new territory: wig became a word for the mind, and to "wig out" was to lose one's composure or reason. The idiom "flip one's wig" also came into use (sharing the "to become crazy or very angry" meaning of the very similar "flip one's lid"), and the adjective wigged-out found a home in the language too, describing anyone who was mentally or emotionally discomposed.

Word History

First Known Use

1960, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of wigged-out was in 1960

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Cite this Entry

“Wigged-out.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wigged-out. Accessed 17 Jun. 2024.

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