[pol-ee-es-ter, pol-ee-es-ter]
  1. Chemistry. a polymer in which the monomer units are linked together by the group –COO–, usually formed by polymerizing a polyhydric alcohol with a polybasic acid: used chiefly in the manufacture of resins, plastics, and textile fibers.
  2. Also called poly. a fabric made from such textile fibers.

Origin of polyester

First recorded in 1925–30; poly- + ester
Related formspol·y·es·ter·i·fi·ca·tion [pol-ee-es-ter-uh-fi-key-shuh n] /ˌpɒl iˌɛs tər ə fɪˈkeɪ ʃən/, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for polyester

Contemporary Examples of polyester

  • Polyester made satin dresses look "cheap", rather than expensive.

    The Daily Beast logo
    Beyond Stainless

    Megan McArdle

    October 19, 2012

British Dictionary definitions for polyester


  1. any of a large class of synthetic materials that are polymers containing recurring -COO- groups: used as plastics, textile fibres, and adhesives
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

Word Origin and History for polyester

1929, formed from polymer + ester. Polyester fiber was discovered 1941.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

polyester in Science


  1. Any of various mostly synthetic polymers that are light, strong resins resistant to weather and corrosion. Polyesters are long chains of esters and are used to make fibers and plastics. They are thermosetting. Some polyesters, such as suberin, occur naturally.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.