- a colorless, oily, almost tasteless, water-insoluble liquid, usually of either a standard light density (light mineral oil) or a standard heavy density (heavy mineral oil), consisting of mixtures of hydrocarbons obtained from petroleum by distillation: used chiefly as a lubricant, in the manufacture of cosmetics, and in medicine as a laxative.
Origin of mineral oil
First recorded in 1795–1805
Also called liquid petrolatum.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for mineral oil
Mineral-oil lamps introduced the danger of explosions of the vapors produced by evaporation.Artificial Light
- British any oil of mineral origin, esp petroleum
- US and Canadian a colourless almost tasteless oily liquid obtained by petroleum distillation and used as a laxativeAlso called (in Britain and certain other countries): liquid paraffin
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
- Any of various light hydrocarbon oils, especially a distillate of petroleum.
- A refined distillate of petroleum, used as a laxative.
- A colorless, odorless, tasteless oil distilled from petroleum. It is used as a lubricant and, in medicine, as a laxative.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.