Often plastics. any of a group of synthetic or natural organic materials that may be shaped when soft and then hardened, including many types of resins, resinoids, polymers, cellulose derivatives, casein materials, and proteins: used in place of other materials, as glass, wood, and metals, in construction and decoration, for making many articles, as coatings, and, drawn into filaments, for weaving. They are often known by trademark names, as Bakelite, Vinylite, or Lucite.
a credit card, or credit cards collectively, usually made of plastic: He had a whole pocketful of plastic.
money, payment, or credit represented by the use of a credit card or cards.
something, or a group of things, made of or resembling plastic: The entire meal was served on plastic.
made of plastic.
capable of being molded or of receiving form: clay and other plastic substances.
produced by molding: plastic figures.
having the power of molding or shaping formless or yielding material: the plastic forces of nature.
being able to create, especially within an art form; having the power to give form or formal expression: the plastic imagination of great poets and composers.
concerned with or pertaining to molding or modeling; sculptural.
relating to three-dimensional form or space, especially on a two-dimensional surface.
pertaining to the tools or techniques of drawing, painting, or sculpture: the plastic means.
characterized by an emphasis on formal structure: plastic requirements of a picture.
pliable; impressionable: the plastic mind of youth.
giving the impression of being made of or furnished with plastic: We stayed at one of those plastic motels.
artificial or insincere; synthetic; phony: jeans made of cotton, not some plastic substitute; a plastic smile.
lacking in depth, individuality, or permanence; superficial, dehumanized, or mass-produced: a plastic society interested only in material acquisition.
of or relating to the use of credit cards: plastic credit; plastic money.
Biology, Pathology. formative.
Surgery. concerned with or pertaining to the remedying or restoring of malformed, injured, or lost parts: a plastic operation.
- plas·ti·cal·ly, plas·tic·ly, adverb
- non·plas·tic, adjective, noun
- un·plas·tic, adjective
Other definitions for -plastic (2 of 2)
a combining form occurring in chloroplastic; protoplastic.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use plastic in a sentence
In the early 2000s, a wave of sock manufacturers closed, followed by food-processing plants, plastics plants, automotive plants, and lightbulb factories.
Also, in plastics, you know — quite often plastics are very hard to recycle because in just one little whatever cup, they use three different plastics, which actually cannot be taken apart in the recycling circle.
The results from a week’s worth of testing showed above-average levels of chemical compounds that come from burning petroleum-based products like oil, fuel or plastics.
Also, please don’t dispose of your recyclables in plastic garbage bags.Environment Report: Size Doesn’t Always Matter Under New Parks Plan | MacKenzie Elmer | July 13, 2020 | Voice of San Diego
This tent of plastic sheeting covers a patient’s head and shoulders.Tackling the novel coronavirus calls for novel ideas | Kathiann Kowalski | May 7, 2020 | Science News For Students
He was also a charismatic, telegenic speaker with a face improved by plastic surgery several years earlier.
The taste of metal cutlery after years of plastic can also taste funny.His First Day Out Of Jail After 40 Years: Adjusting To Life Outside | Justin Rohrlich | January 3, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
Cover with plastic wrap and allow the dates to soften, about 15 minutes.Make ‘The Chew’s’ Carla Hall’s Sticky Toffee Pudding | Carla Hall | December 28, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Internet chatter rose to a deafening roar as speculation began about what—plastic surgery?Butts, Brawls, and Bill Cosby: The Biggest Celebrity Scandals of 2014 | Kevin Fallon | December 27, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
His chin rested on the thick plastic collar buckled around his neck.Dungeons and Genital Clamps: Inside a Legendary BDSM Chateau | Ian Frisch | December 20, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
To begin with, the bar was of pinkish sandstone, smoothed and covered by a coating of plastic.Fee of the Frontier | Horace Brown Fyfe
For these, plastic natures have been substituted, but still without anything being gained.A Philosophical Dictionary, Volume 1 (of 10) | Franois-Marie Arouet (AKA Voltaire)
Chrome dinettes and plastic furniture are manufactured in plants located at Marion.Hallowed Heritage: The Life of Virginia | Dorothy M. Torpey
The sheets of rubber from which the uppers and soles are cut are at this stage of the work plastic and very sticky.The Wonder Book of Knowledge | Various
Art has flourished in Virginia from the handicraft of the early days to the plastic sculpturing of the present.Hallowed Heritage: The Life of Virginia | Dorothy M. Torpey
British Dictionary definitions for plastic (1 of 2)
any one of a large number of synthetic usually organic materials that have a polymeric structure and can be moulded when soft and then set, esp such a material in a finished state containing plasticizer, stabilizer, filler, pigments, etc. Plastics are classified as thermosetting (such as Bakelite) or thermoplastic (such as PVC) and are used in the manufacture of many articles and in coatings, artificial fibres, etc: Compare resin (def. 2)
short for plastic money
made of plastic
easily influenced; impressionable: the plastic minds of children
capable of being moulded or formed
of or relating to moulding or modelling: the plastic arts
produced or apparently produced by moulding: the plastic draperies of Giotto's figures
having the power to form or influence: the plastic forces of the imagination
biology of or relating to any formative process; able to change, develop, or grow: plastic tissues
of or relating to plastic surgery
slang superficially attractive yet unoriginal or artificial: plastic food
- plastically, adverb
British Dictionary definitions for -plastic (2 of 2)
growing or forming: neoplastic
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 plastic
Any of numerous substances that can be shaped and molded when subjected to heat or pressure. Plastics are easily shaped because they consist of long-chain molecules known as polymers, which do not break apart when flexed. Plastics are usually artificial resins but can also be natural substances, as in certain cellular derivatives and shellac. Plastics can be pressed into thin layers, formed into objects, or drawn into fibers for use in textiles. Most do not conduct electricity well, are low in density, and are often very tough. Polyvinyl chloride, methyl methacrylate, and polystyrene are plastics. See more at thermoplastic thermosetting.
Capable of being molded or formed into a shape.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.