[ nahy-lon ]
/ ˈnaɪ lɒn /


any of a class of thermoplastic polyamides capable of extrusion when molten into fibers, sheets, etc., of extreme toughness, strength, and elasticity, synthesized by the interaction of a dicarboxylic acid with a diamine: used especially for yarn, fabrics, and bristles, as for brushes.
nylons, stockings made of nylon, especially sheer, full-length ones for women.

Origin of nylon

1938; coined as a generic by the du Pont Chemical Co. as distinct from known words and having no prior meaning or use, but with the suffix -on suggesting other textile fibers such as rayon


half-ny·lon, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for nylons

  • She said her husband used to dress up in her clothing (dresses, nylons, and bras) and wear his own makeup.

  • He missed the bobbypins on the floor, the nylons drying across the shower rack, the toothpaste tubes squeezed from the top.

    At the Post|Horace Leonard Gold

British Dictionary definitions for nylons (1 of 3)

/ (ˈnaɪlɒnz) /

pl n

stockings made of nylon or other man-made material

British Dictionary definitions for nylons (2 of 3)

/ (ˈnaɪlɒn) /


informal a high-earning business executive who enjoys a transatlantic lifestyle, living part of the year in New York City and part in London

Word Origin for NYLON

C20: from N (ew) Y (ork) + Lon (don)

British Dictionary definitions for nylons (3 of 3)

/ (ˈnaɪlɒn) /


a class of synthetic polyamide materials made by copolymerizing dicarboxylic acids with diamines. They can be moulded into a variety of articles, such as combs and machine parts. Nylon monofilaments are used for bristles, etc, and nylon fibres can be spun into yarn
  1. yarn or cloth made of nylon, used for clothing, stockings, etc
  2. (as modifier)a nylon dress See also nylons

Word Origin for nylon

C20: originally a trademark
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

Scientific definitions for nylons

[ nīlŏn′ ]

Any of various materials made of synthetic polyamides (a type of nitrogen-containing polymer). Nylon is very strong and elastic, and can be formed into fibers, sheets, or bristles. It is used to make fabrics, plastics, and molded products.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.