Definition of elbow grease in English:

elbow grease


mass nouninformal
  • Hard physical work, especially vigorous polishing or cleaning.

    ‘nothing would shift it however much elbow grease we used’
    • ‘Inadvertently her success could lead some to assume that all one needs to make it out of the ghetto is determination, elbow grease and a perfect posterior.’
    • ‘As an alternative some elbow grease was applied to the kitchen leaving it sparkly and clean!’
    • ‘This is where glamour is mixed with sweat and elbow grease, life lessons paired with blood.’
    • ‘Plenty of time, effort and elbow grease shall be committed to this task.’
    • ‘We will be using a high-pressure hose reel and lots of elbow grease.’
    • ‘Then, as if passing through some kind of barrier, there's nothing quite so important as the lavish application of elbow grease until my small kingdom is bright and sparkly again.’
    • ‘With lots of elbow grease and energy, she got the shop area renovated into a workable space and tried to keep the renovations true to the history of the building.’
    • ‘You can buy all the fancy products you like, but you can never beat vinegar, newspaper and a bit of elbow grease.’
    • ‘But hours of hard work and elbow grease transformed the shack into a bright, clean and well-stocked shop.’
    • ‘With some hard work and elbow grease, the building was cleaned, painted, and filled with many shelves of books.’
    hard work, work, labour, toil, exertion, effort, slog, drudgery
    View synonyms


elbow grease