Definition of Polaroid in English:



  • 1mass noun Material in thin plastic sheets that produces a high degree of plane polarization in light passing through it.

    as modifier ‘Polaroid sunglasses’
    1. 1.1Polaroids Sunglasses with lenses made from Polaroid plastic.
      ‘I lectured, pulling my Polaroids down to the end of my nose’
      sunglasses, dark glasses
      View synonyms
  • 2A photograph taken with a Polaroid camera.

    ‘she's come to take more Polaroids’
    • ‘The images they produce are undeniably crude, but like Polaroids or snapshots from vintage or ‘toy’ cameras, that lack of finesse lends a distinctive, awkward charm.’
    • ‘In between the spritzers and sea breezes, they keep track of their dates and potential partners by taking some very strange Polaroids of them - Polaroids that are not of faces but more unusual areas of the body…’
    • ‘This was of course next to all the snapshots of their team's crashes and a few Polaroids of team members in the hospital, usually giving a thumbs up.’
    • ‘Gonzalo Ruffat's website has lots of blurry nudes, presented as if they were Polaroids.’
    • ‘If you want instant gratification shoot Polaroids.’
    • ‘During a 15-year moratorium on videomaking, beginning in 1979, Campus experimented with large-format Polaroids, then turned to the new medium of digital photography.’
    • ‘‘Get the pretty ones at the top,’ he says as he poses in the window of The Matchmaker pub for a photograph, the Polaroids spilling out from the pages of names and particulars.’
    • ‘Dash Snow apparently took his Polaroids to capture his life by night.’
    • ‘This sensation of dilated time is also present in several 1976 Polaroids showing ordinary things in Welling's studio and the restaurant where he worked during that period.’
    • ‘Xavier Damon's work consists of Polaroids that are being enlarged to fairly large sizes.’
    • ‘This Japanese tale of first love sounds simple, but then you find out that the film was shot in 16 mm, 8mm, video, Polaroids and digital photos.’
    • ‘Some of his Polaroids were originally shot within miles of the hotel and the surrounding beaches, including Miami Beach, South Beach, Hollywood Beach, Fort Lauderdale Beach and Golden Beach.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, the Drama of the Photo Shoot continues, as I showed the Polaroids to a few of my nearest and dearest.’
    • ‘The top photo was a Polaroid of a smiling woman leaning against a tree, her long brown hair blowing slightly in the breeze.’
    • ‘Talbot's negative-positive process was a major factor in the decline of the daguerreotype - which was a one-shot, like a Polaroid.’
    • ‘Leandro Erlich and Judi Werthein of Argentina invited visitors to pose for Polaroids against a photomural of a ski chalet, on a set equipped with skis and covered with artificial snow.’
    • ‘After threatening Bourgeau and others with arrest if they didn't cooperate, police officers took close-up Polaroids of some of the images.’
    • ‘The show's centerpiece was the ‘Hand with Spot’ series: 13 grainy, vastly enlarged Polaroids of the artist's left hand.’
    • ‘The edge of a television screen can be seen and the Polaroid from the first photograph is subtly inserted in the rumpled sheets, implying that someone is underneath them.’
    • ‘Working from Polaroids, Kriek has managed to capture the characteristic luminous, blurry grain of commercial Polaroids, and translate this into oversized re-presentations of the images as watercolour paintings.’


  • 1Relating to or denoting a type of camera with internal processing that produces a finished print rapidly after each exposure.

    • ‘It came to me after I'd finished posting about my new Polaroid camera a while back, and was Googling for more info.’
    • ‘During some downtime several years ago, he hit on the idea of jamming a Polaroid camera to see if it would produce a double exposure, superimposing two separate images overtop one another.’
    • ‘I have a couple of what I think of as toy cameras, an Action Sampler bought super-cheap and seldom used, a Polaroid camera that prints little stickers.’
    • ‘Sugar-pink boom boxes, CD players, Polaroid cameras, wallets, T-shirts and cushions count as run-of-the-mill merchandise.’
    • ‘But now, thanks to a sudden, global enthusiasm for Polaroid cameras, the humiliation of seeing yourself head-down in a punch bowl while gripping your boss in an armlock may well become an almost instantaneous experience.’
    1. 1.1 Denoting film for or a photograph taken with a Polaroid camera.
      ‘a small Polaroid snapshot’
      • ‘The physical appearance of Polaroid prints can vary depending on the camera that was used to create them.’
      • ‘This manipulated Polaroid print can then be scanned into a computer and further manipulated by the artist.’
      • ‘It will record the daylight present on the summer solstice on Polaroid film with no camera.’
      • ‘He made a closer study of the Polaroid print, for the boy appeared very dark-skinned, suggesting that perhaps he shared some native bloodlines as well.’
      • ‘Depending on the tools used and the hand technique, the Polaroid film is manipulated to the artist's satisfaction.’


1930s: from polarize + -oid.