Definition of freshen in English:



  • 1[with object] Make (something) newer, cleaner, or more attractive:

    ‘it didn't take long to freshen her make-up’
    • ‘Surgeons say politicians are turning to them to wipe out bags under their eyes and freshening their faces in the run-up to March's presidential elections.’
    • ‘I thought about how funny it would be to see someone attempt to eat one in an effort to freshen their beer-breath.’
    • ‘I could barely believe it when the ‘expert’ declared that using a lemon to freshen your armpits is preferable to using spray-on deodorants because they can cause cancer.’
    • ‘They could do with investing in some Listerine to freshen their breath.’
    • ‘They asked image specialists for their ideas on how to freshen the legion's image.’
    • ‘Mix it and its juices into the soup to freshen colour and flavour.’
    • ‘Mohammed dreamt up his alter ego working behind the counter at a drugstore, pining for something to freshen the job's tedium.’
    • ‘Colours for the steering wheel, seats, floor coverings as well as side and roof trims have also been freshened.’
    • ‘But despite the weight of the rain there wasn't enough of it to freshen the air.’
    • ‘Throughout the day they constantly freshened their makeup and adjusted their hair ornaments, and a mirror was of course basic to these tasks.’
    • ‘Winters are usually mild with an abundance of rain to freshen the rich soil.’
    • ‘Gingerly I descended and paused, as a waft of cool air freshened my brow.’
    • ‘Daewoo Ireland is going to have a very busy year ahead of them with the arrival of no less than four new cars which will freshen the brand enormously and make the newly revitalised company a much more serious contender in the market.’
    • ‘This session, however, is sure to feature a myriad of stories to freshen the soul, from some of the festival's hip kids.’
    • ‘You've often spoken about the ways in which your work in the theatre and opera is an attempt to freshen work by some sort of transposition or dislocation.’
    • ‘Squeezing a lemon is just as effective at freshening the air.’
    • ‘A few years ago I remember seeing advertisements for plug-in household ionisers that freshen the air and make you feel more wide awake.’
    • ‘This freshens the verse and toughens the sentiment.’
    • ‘Use the same ideas to clean and freshen your garbage disposal.’
    • ‘Baking soda can also freshen musty carpets.’
    refresh, revitalize, restore, revive, reinvigorate, reanimate, wake up, rouse, enliven, liven up, energize, stimulate, brace, fortify, invigorate
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  • 2[no object] (of wind) become stronger and colder:

    ‘the westerly wind freshened and howled dismally’
    ‘the yachts picked up a freshening breeze’
    • ‘With the wind beginning to freshen - storms have been forecast overnight and the events today have been postponed - the lake was not quite as calm as it had been on Saturday.’
    • ‘And when the breeze freshens in the afternoon, holes 15, 16 and 17 all get harder.’
    • ‘A short course was set in the south lake as the wind freshened to Force 4 and New Order took the lead and held on to win.’
    • ‘The thin sun had disappeared and the wind freshened under a slate grey sky when 3/4 of an hour later, with the car parked safely in a garage nearby, and with the key to the house firmly in Denise's grip, they walked down the path to the front door.’
    • ‘The night seemed to swallow even the bright white patches of his horse's coat and as the evening breeze freshened and cooled, Joe Cartwright snuggled deeper into his jacket and tugged down his hat with a gloved hand.’
    • ‘With the breeze freshening at Munster's backs, they were content to play a territorial game, confident in the control of their set-piece game.’
    • ‘Thomas Levet negotiates a freshening breeze to get back to the clubhouse at five under, sharing the lead with Casey’
    • ‘She loved to take her breaks here, where the freshening breeze from the forest could caress her fur, and she could watch and listen to the multitude of birds that made their homes there.’
    • ‘You go outside into the freshening night breeze, and you hear cheering in the distance, and you raise a glass to the moon as it begins to get bright again.’
    • ‘Of course it didn't last as the winds continued to freshen.’
    • ‘Around noon the sky clouded over as the wind freshened and soon we had white caps.’
    • ‘Alex Thompson added two difficult conversions as by now the breeze was freshening.’
    • ‘In the night the wind freshened and at about two we had to crawl out from beneath billows of collapsed canvas.’
    • ‘As the match began the blustery wind freshened and cooled with the huge Hawks flag fluttering above the old pavilion.’
    • ‘At sunset, the wind freshened and veered to the north.’
    • ‘On the last lap, the wind freshened and became more shifty.’
    • ‘When at last the wind freshened and the sky cleared - with one barrel of water left on each ship - Columbus decided to sail west.’
    • ‘On Friday, with the wind freshening I check that all is well with my new propagator and its precious cargo of germinating seeds - and yes, all is well.’
    • ‘The road turns away from the stream here, its path taking me into the freshening breeze.’
    • ‘However, the breeze continued to freshen and by ten thirty it was blowing a high gale.’
    become stronger, strengthen
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  • 3North American Add more liquid to (a drink); top up:

    ‘the waitress freshened their coffee’
    • ‘While Elaine was on the phone, Maria offered to freshen everyone's drink.’
    • ‘This means the sangria can be made the night before and freshened with the soda water and more fruit when guests arrive.’
    refill, top up, fill up, replenish, recharge, reload, resupply
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  • 4North American [no object] (of a cow) give birth and come into milk.

    • ‘Cows soon to freshen or with calves should have access to a magnesium-containing mineral supplement to help prevent grass tetany on pasture in the spring.’

Phrasal Verbs

  • freshen up

    • Refresh oneself by washing or changing into clean clothes:

      ‘he went off to freshen up in the local baths’
      • ‘Zoe came and got me after I freshened up, and for the first time in years I left the house without wearing any denim.’
      • ‘It is likely that your husband will then fall promptly asleep so adjust your clothing, freshen up and apply your night time face and hair products.’
      • ‘Immediately we are reassured by our genial host Eddie Spear that we have plenty time to freshen up before our much-anticipated dinner and he urges us to repair forthwith.’
      • ‘We freshen up and head over to our friend Anna's flat in Karlaplan.’
      • ‘He imagined clean towels and crisp linen, and the opportunity to freshen up and prepare himself for what he figured must be just around the corner for him.’
      • ‘If guys do have a spell and get away to freshen up mentally and physically, it's a positive thing.’
      • ‘After a long day's sightseeing, you won't always want to go back into the centre to eat once you've returned to your hotel to freshen up.’
      • ‘After a satisfying period of lounging around, reading the papers, and gazing out at the bunnies hip-hopping about in the snow, we moved up to our bedroom to get freshened up for the evening.’
      • ‘We had to resort to using baby wipes to freshen up.’
      • ‘At its completion I retired to the bathroom to freshen up.’
      • ‘After freshening up we went for an Indian meal at the restaurant a few doors away.’
      • ‘It was a bit of relaxation for the players and a rare chance to let off some steam and freshen up before knuckling down and preparing for Saturday.’
      • ‘He is back on the warpath, freshened up and revitalised by his months away from Downing Street.’
      • ‘We had a good night's sleep in a comfortable four-berth cabin with a window view, and its own shower in which to freshen up when woken at 6am the next day.’
      have a wash, wash oneself, bathe, shower
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