[ gim-ik ]
See synonyms for: gimmickgimmicky on

  1. an ingenious or novel device, scheme, or stratagem, especially one designed to attract attention or increase appeal.

  2. a concealed, usually devious aspect or feature of something, as a plan or deal: An offer that good must have a gimmick in it somewhere.

  1. a hidden mechanical device by which a magician works a trick or a gambler controls a game of chance.

  2. Electronics Informal. a capacitor formed by intertwining two insulated wires.

verb (used with object)
  1. to equip or embellish with unnecessary features, especially in order to increase salability, acceptance, etc. (often followed by up): to gimmick up a sports car with chrome and racing stripes.

verb (used without object)
  1. to resort to gimmickry, especially habitually.

Origin of gimmick

An Americanism dating back to 1925–30; origin uncertain

Other words for gimmick

Other words from gimmick

  • gim·mick·er, noun
  • gim·mick·y, adjective
  • un·gim·mick·y, adjective

Words Nearby gimmick Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use gimmick in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for gimmick


/ (ˈɡɪmɪk) /

  1. something designed to attract extra attention, interest, or publicity

  2. any clever device, gadget, or stratagem, esp one used to deceive

  1. mainly US a device or trick of legerdemain that enables a magician to deceive the audience

Origin of gimmick

C20: originally US slang, of unknown origin

Derived forms of gimmick

  • gimmickry, noun
  • gimmicky, adjective

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