Home Beauty Cosmetic Product Definition of cosmetic | Dictionary.com

Definition of cosmetic | Dictionary.com


[ koz-met-ik ]

/ kɒzˈmɛt ɪk /



a powder, lotion, lipstick, rouge, or other preparation for beautifying the face, skin, hair, nails, etc.

cosmetics, superficial measures to make something appear better, more attractive, or more impressive: The budget committee opted for cosmetics instead of a serious urban renewal plan.


serving to beautify; imparting or improving beauty, especially of the face.

used or done superficially to make something look better, more attractive, or more impressive: Alterations in the concert hall were only cosmetic and did nothing to improve the acoustics.



We’re sure you’ll solve it, for the words from September 28 to October 4, 2020, with élan!

Question 1 of 7

What does “avow” mean?

Origin of cosmetic



cos·met·i·cal·ly, adverban·ti·cos·met·ics, adjective

Words nearby cosmetic

COSLA, cos lettuce, cosm-, cosmeceutical, Cosmegen, cosmetic, cosmetician, cosmeticize, cosmetic surgery, cosmetize, cosmetologist

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Words related to cosmetic

superficial, corrective, nonessential, makeup, surface, restorative, improving, painted, remedial

Example sentences from the Web for cosmetic

  • Skincare is increasingly outselling cosmetics in the beauty business.

    The Gen Z founders of a boutique skincare brand tackling chronic skin conditions and stigma|Rachel King|September 13, 2020|Fortune

  • Epic, whose Fortnite generates more than $1 billion annually from in-game purchases of virtual cosmetics and extras, sued both companies for what it considers excessive fees and for the right to sell game extras directly to players.

    Apple’s App Store draws scrutiny in yet another country|Verne Kopytoff|September 3, 2020|Fortune

  • A stock split is, fundamentally, a cosmetic accounting trick—and buying fractional ownership of these companies is, on a relative basis, more expensive than ever after factoring in recent gains in share price.

    Investors riding high on Apple and Tesla stock splits could get clipped, data shows|rhhackettfortune|August 31, 2020|Fortune

  • Skin care is increasingly outselling cosmetics in the beauty business.

    The founders of skin care startup Starface on normalizing uncomfortable conversations|Rachel King|August 31, 2020|Fortune

  • L’Oreal’s sales dropped 19% in the second quarter as lockdown conditions weakened demand for makeup and cosmetics.

    How the world’s biggest advertisers are spending (or not) as the pandemic grinds on|Lara O’Reilly|August 3, 2020|Digiday

  • PG has been used in more than 4,000 food, beverage, pharmaceutical and cosmetic products for more than 50 years.

    Europeans Recall Fireball Whiskey Over a Sweetener Also Used in Antifreeze|Tim Mak|October 28, 2014|DAILY BEAST

  • Propylene glycol is used for a variety of industrial, cosmetic, and food production uses.

    Europeans Recall Fireball Whiskey Over a Sweetener Also Used in Antifreeze|Tim Mak|October 28, 2014|DAILY BEAST

  • She said pageant contents are just the most visible product of the cosmetic industry now at risk.

    Venezuela Now Has Toilet Paper but No Breast Implants|Jason Batansky|September 16, 2014|DAILY BEAST

  • It can lead to all types of cosmetic and functional issues down the road which are difficult if not impossible to reverse.

    Beware the Designer Vagina|Lizzie Crocker|July 25, 2014|DAILY BEAST

  • On second thought, maybe I will contact that cosmetic dentist.

    The New World of Anti-Aging Dentistry|Kent Sepkowitz|June 4, 2014|DAILY BEAST

  • None of them have beards, and it would seem they use a cosmetic to extirpate them.

    Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 65, No. 399, January 1849|Various

  • It would appear that in America a cosmetic is in use, consisting of calomel mixed into a paste with water.

    Poisons: Their Effects and Detection|Alexander Wynter Blyth

  • Eva had taken up an agency for a cosmetic which was manufactured by a woman in Rowe.

    The Portion of Labor|Mary E. Wilkins Freeman

  • (i) For cosmetic reasons, to remedy a deformity due to a squinting eye which is amblyopic.

    A System of Operative Surgery, Volume IV (of 4)|Various

  • He had to assume that the metallic fiber in his clothing and the lead flakes in the cosmetic would scramble the circuit signal.

    Tangle Hold|F. L. Wallace

British Dictionary definitions for cosmetic


/ (kɒzˈmɛtɪk) /


any preparation applied to the body, esp the face, with the intention of beautifying it


serving or designed to beautify the body, esp the face

having no other function than to beautifycosmetic illustrations in a book

derogatory designed to cover up a greater flaw or deficiency; superficialtheir resignation is a cosmetic exercise

Derived forms of cosmetic

cosmetically, adverbcosmeticology, noun

Word Origin for cosmetic

C17: from Greek kosmētikos, from kosmein to arrange, from kosmos order

Collins English Dictionary – Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Medical definitions for cosmetic


[ kŏz-mĕt′ĭk ]


A preparation, such as powder or a skin cream, designed to beautify the body by direct application.


Serving to beautify the body, especially the face and hair.

Serving to modify or improve the appearance of a physical feature, defect, or irregularity.

The American Heritage® Stedman’s Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.




Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here