Definition of calamine in English:



  • 1mass noun A pink powder consisting of zinc carbonate and ferric oxide, used to make a soothing lotion or ointment.

    as modifier ‘calamine lotion’
    • ‘Treatment of mild to moderate rash includes application of cool compresses or diluted aluminum acetate solution, such as Burow's solution, or calamine lotion.’
    • ‘Antihistamines and calamine lotion can be used to bring down swelling and ease itching.’
    • ‘Applying calamine lotion to itchy areas may help.’
    • ‘Put calamine lotion on itchy areas (but don't use it on the face, especially near the eyes).’
    • ‘Resist scratching, lather with soap and rinse to avoid secondary infection, and apply calamine lotion to relive the itching.’
    • ‘The longer he continues in practice, the fewer the names recalled, and the therapy diminishes to calamine lotion, Lassar's paste, sulphur ointment, and chrysarobin.’
    • ‘Apply a soothing cream such as aftersun cream, calamine lotion or preparations containing aloe.’
    • ‘Crotamiton or calamine cream or lotions have soothing qualities and may help to relieve itching.’
    • ‘Works better than calamine lotion for itchy rashes.’
    • ‘If you get bitten, wash the area with soap and water or apply calamine lotion or one of the many cortisone creams on the market.’
    • ‘It lasts a week and can be soothed with calamine lotion.’
    • ‘Over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream or calamine lotion will reduce itching and inflammation.’
    • ‘Like calamine lotion on burnt skin, it soothes the blistering heat of the local cooking.’
    • ‘If chilblains develop, don't scratch them; soothing lotions such as witch hazel or calamine will take away most of the discomfort.’
    • ‘You may substitute Benadryl lotion or a calamine preparation with menthol, but these are less effective.’
    • ‘She pulls me by the arm and leads me to the bathroom, opens the drug cabinet and takes out a small brown bottle labeled calamine lotion.’
    • ‘A cool bath and soothing lotions (e.g. calamine, 1% menthol aqueous cream) may ease the itch.’
    • ‘Neither would most rush off to the Doctor or hospital for insect bites or a minor sniffle they could fix themselves with calamine lotion, or eucalyptus inhalation.’
    • ‘If your skin is itchy, avoid using alcohol, calamine lotion or powder - because all three tend to dry your skin, she says.’
    • ‘Sometimes jaundice causes itching which can be treated with preparations such as calamine lotion.’
    • ‘I've used hydrocortisone creams and calamine lotion, but they only relieve my symptoms minimally.’
    • ‘Quinine salts appeared in many preventative types of sun lotion and calamine was often used to take out the sting.’
    • ‘Moisturising, after-sun or calamine lotions can ease some of the discomfort.’
    • ‘Apply 0.5 percent or 1 percent hydrocortisone cream, calamine lotion or a baking soda paste to the bite or sting several times a day until your symptoms subside.’
    • ‘Your doctor might have you use antihistamine pills, a steroid cream, calamine lotion, or zinc oxide cream.’
    • ‘Lotions containing calamine may be used on open lesions to reduce pain and pruritus.’
  • 2dated Smithsonite or a similar zinc ore.

    • ‘For example, the calamine violet grows only where the soil is highly enriched in zinc, and the copper flower grows in areas of copper mineralization.’
    • ‘Business interests are represented by documents relating to calamine mining on Malham Moor and the collection includes particularly rich archives for Craven area townships.’
    • ‘Historically, smithsonite is referred to as calamine in some descriptive literature, particularly that related to Great Britain and Australia, leading to confusion with hemimorphite if specific compositional data are lacking.’


Late Middle English: via Old French from medieval Latin calamina, alteration of Latin cadmia ‘calamine’, from Greek kadmeia (gē) ‘Cadmean (earth)’, from Kadmos ‘Cadmus’ (see Cadmus).