• synonyms


adjective, skin·ni·er, skin·ni·est.
  1. very lean or thin; emaciated: a skinny little kitten.
  2. of or like skin.
  3. unusually low or reduced; meager; minimal: skinny profits.
  4. (of an object) narrow or slender: a skinny bed.
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  1. Slang.
    1. accurate information; data; facts.
    2. news, especially if confidential; gossip: Here's the skinny on the latest Hollywood scandal.
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Origin of skinny

1565–75; skin + -y1; def. 5 is unclearly derived and perhaps a distinct word
Related formsskin·ni·ness, noun

Synonyms for skinny

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for skinnier

bony, lanky, gaunt, slender, scrawny, angular, spare, lean, emaciated, rawboned, underweight, lank, skeletal, twiggy, malnourished, scraggy, undernourished

Examples from the Web for skinnier

Contemporary Examples of skinnier

Historical Examples of skinnier

  • Move over, Corbett, I'm skinnier than you are, and I can reach that cleat easier than you can.

    Stand by for Mars!

    Carey Rockwell

British Dictionary definitions for skinnier


adjective -nier or -niest
  1. lacking in flesh; thin
  2. consisting of or resembling skin
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Derived Formsskinniness, noun
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 skinnier



c.1400, "resembling skin," from skin (n.) + -y (2). Meaning "lean, emaciated" is recorded from c.1600. Of clothes, "tight-fitting" by 1970. In the noun sense of "the truth" it is World War II military slang, perhaps from the notion of the "naked" truth. Related: skinniness.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper