Definition of acrylic in English:



  • 1(of synthetic resins and textile fibres) made from polymers of acrylic acid or acrylates.

    ‘a red acrylic jumper’
    • ‘Although these hobby weavers were using acrylic yarns, their skills caught the eye of expert weaver Rachel Brown when she came to the area to teach a spinning class.’
    • ‘Six families were evacuated from their homes as the blaze destroyed a spinning room and warehouse full of acrylic fibres.’
    • ‘A match or cigarette dropped on an acrylic blanket can ignite the fabric which will burn rapidly unless extinguished.’
    • ‘Synthetic stuccos consist of sand suspended in a mixture of acrylic polymer, latex and pigments.’
    • ‘All of the cloth bags are held together by an acrylic cord, and are stored in the cartridge case.’
    • ‘It is used in the synthesis of acrylic fibers used in the manufacture of clothing.’
    • ‘This crack filler contains river sand in an acrylic polymer, which first appears milky white but dries clear and leaves only the speckled colored sand exposed.’
    • ‘And she sported a pair of white cotton shorts on the beach and an acrylic and cotton blend sweater along with some white sneakers.’
    • ‘Synthetic blends such as olefin and acrylic fibers draw moisture away from the body better than cotton, preventing chills.’
    • ‘There's a knit, fleece, cotton, or acrylic warmer waiting for you.’
    • ‘It's a superwash wool and acrylic blend that I've used before, so I know it won't shrink.’
    • ‘We developed several outdoor projects with an acrylic fabric often used for boat covers because it's resistant to mildew, water, and fading and it can be cleaned with a hose.’
    • ‘It's a wool / acrylic mix yarn that I picked up as a job lot in a wool shop sale.’
    • ‘Each time your brother scratches at the uncomfortable acrylic sweater Mom gave him, offer him some lotion.’
    • ‘They are both seed stitch patterns, made with acrylic yarn.’
    • ‘Wool is much warmer than cotton or acrylic fibers, probably because it comes from animals, and biology usually knows what it's doing.’
    • ‘We used a water- and stain-resistant acrylic fabric designed for outdoor use.’
    • ‘I knit with acrylic yarn all of the time, and there are some yarns that I really like.’
    • ‘These irritants can include soaps, detergents, cosmetics, wool and acrylic clothing, linens, and perfumes.’
    • ‘The fuel is a coating of an acrylic polymer or a droplet of water that sits on the foil.’
    1. 1.1(of paint) based on acrylic resin as a medium.
      ‘acrylic colours’
      • ‘The gallery will present his reproductions painted in not only watercolor, but also gouache and acrylic paints.’
      • ‘At my request, the painters use just three colors of acrylic paint (tempera paint or oil pastels would do nicely, too).’
      • ‘I was able to imitate the moulding's finish by base coating the wood with red acrylic paint, then applying a coat of black semi-gloss paint.’
      • ‘He mixes his acrylic paints right on the canvases spread out on the floor, and paints very quickly.’
      • ‘I painted the bevel with a mix of acrylic paint in a dark blue color to match the sky in the etching.’
      • ‘Paint on your colors using acrylic paints (test pots are ideal and come in a variety of colors).’
      • ‘They then painted the outlines of their face and facial features with a dark color of acrylic paint, tracing their pencil sketch through the Plexiglas.’
      • ‘Using acrylic paint and glass medium, paint your design on the tile (or the underside for better protection).’
      • ‘Sculpted of polyurethane resin and acrylic paint, the tableau rests on a shallow platform about 23 feet long and 14 feet wide.’
      • ‘Children under 10 may be encouraged to paint faces rather than carving them, using poster paints or acrylic paints.’
      • ‘Ranging from flat and opaque to glasslike, Appel's acrylic paint is clearly hand-applied but with varying degrees of visible brushwork.’
      • ‘The colors are also computer-generated and matched in acrylic paint that is applied to canvas in smooth layers.’
      • ‘Try water colours, acrylic paints, pastels and coloured paper, coloured modelling clay, ordinary air-drying clay, origami paper, rubber printing stamps and gel pens.’
      • ‘With a light touch, fill in the design with acrylic paints or watercolors; create light and dark areas to give the image depth.’
      • ‘Altered with gesso, acrylic paint, black and flesh-pink tar gel as well as collage, the pages of her diary were installed along a wall in a four-part grid.’
      • ‘Starr's basic method for the past couple of years has been to pour acrylic paint - many gallons of it - directly into a variety of big, industrial sponges.’
      • ‘Detached from canvas or ground, acrylic paint proves itself here to be a surprisingly supple sculptural material.’
      • ‘So I went to the craft store and bought some new colors of acrylic craft paint and medium for fabric.’
      • ‘The acrylic paint is solid, the color even, giving the arcs a heft almost equal to that of the stone and plaster around them.’
      • ‘These water based acrylic paints are quick drying and easy to use.’


  • 1[mass noun] An acrylic textile fibre.

    ‘a sweater in four-ply acrylic’
    • ‘There are many types of synthetic and natural fibres, such as polynosic, polyester, modal, acrylic, cotton, and so on.’
    • ‘It's not that I have anything against acrylic, I just prefer to knit with natural fibers.’
    • ‘Made from a blend of virgin wool, acrylic and polyester, this jersey will surely yield a perfect fit.’
    • ‘A different tax regime for blended textiles and pure non-cotton (polyester, viscose, acrylic and nylon).’
    • ‘Are we depleting our supplies of rayon and acrylic?’
    • ‘Most of the yarns were classic yarns in wool, acrylic, cotton, alpaca, etc.’
    • ‘They're black-and-white striped with a simple red-and-gray star at the top of each one, and they're made of acrylic, so they're not all itchy.’
    • ‘Come to think of it, I would also avoid acrylic for a bedspread, after all, all that work means heirloom and it should had been done in a much better yarn.’
    • ‘They aim to knit one square per knitter, per week - that's about 2 hours work per square - but they need more yarn: wool or acrylic is fine.’
    • ‘Most currently available chenille is acrylic, which is very difficult to dye.’
    • ‘The canopy on an F - 18 Hornet is made of stretched acrylic.’
    • ‘Opt for a blend of wool and acrylic, usually a 50/50 split.’
    • ‘Most synthetic fabrics, such as nylon, acrylic or polyester resist ignition.’
    • ‘So I just made my own out of acrylic, and it works exactly the same.’
    • ‘As Judith notes, it is challenging to dye acrylic & probably not worth the trouble.’
  • 2An acrylic paint.

    ‘she paints mainly in acrylics’
    [mass noun] ‘washes of white acrylic’
    • ‘Starting by recreating old maps and lithographs, she moved on to a more vivid and free form of expression in paint through acrylics, water colours, and charcoal.’
    • ‘Scissors Jack ‘For Jean’ is a striding, confident acrylic on canvas of almost 8 by 12 feet.’
    • ‘The show featured a bouquet of oils, acrylics, watercolors and pastels and a mix of colorful springtime florals and landscapes.’
    • ‘Anna Peters's work, by comparison, is a lot looser, cartoony drawings on paper plates, paper, acrylic on canvas are jokey one shot reflexive gags.’
    • ‘Susan does yoga and paints with acrylics on canvas, doing portraits, still lifes, and landscapes.’
    • ‘Each of the works shown is 50 x 50 inches, both acrylic on canvas, with a suggested retail of $15,000.’
    • ‘These smaller collages of acrylic and fabric on canvas include a pitcher holding a few flowers and several tree- or leaf-shaped icons.’
    • ‘He has chosen acrylic on canvas to portray his thoughts.’
    • ‘In the tents one could see artists painting with watercolours, acrylics pastels, or demonstrating encaustic painting.’
    • ‘You might substitute another medium for tempera paint, such as acrylics, watercolors, oil pastels or chalk pastels.’
    • ‘Levine has been a lifelong artist who deals with the abstract in his photography, watercolors, oils, acrylics, mixed media and metal sculpture.’
    • ‘Waterford City features in the exhibition, which consists of 16 paintings, all acrylic on canvas, depicting streetscapes of Ireland.’
    • ‘At first, Gray painted on canvas using acrylics.’
    • ‘She was a life-long nonsmoker and an artist, painting with watercolor and acrylics.’
    • ‘The company deals in originals, oils, acrylics, watercolors and serigraphs.’
    • ‘Nai focuses on flowers and paints in a variety of media, including watercolors, gouache, acrylics, oils and tempera.’
    • ‘She worked originally as a sculptor, later going into oil painting and has spent the last 25 years working in transparent watercolor and acrylics.’
    • ‘Rachael says initially she uses different layers of acrylic to build up a painted surface on the canvas, a layered process of paint and latex.’
    • ‘He paints in oils and acrylics with a unique sense of color and shape.’
    • ‘As an all-round artist, Ruth has recently taken up her painting again, producing stunning images in vibrant acrylic on canvas with prices starting at €150.’


Mid 19th century: from the liquid aldehyde acrolein (from Latin acer, acri- pungent + ol(eum) oil + -in)+ -yl + -ic.