Definition of neaten in English:



  • Make (something) tidy.

    ‘she made an attempt to neaten her hair’
    • ‘Stretching my legs, I pulled down the skirt I was wearing and tried to neaten my shirt.’
    • ‘I was neatening a table of books when they walked by, Laura was giving him a tour.’
    • ‘The desk was piled with books and paper, it looked like someone had made a half-hearted attempt to neaten the stacks.’
    • ‘Her thin hands slide over her clothes and hair, trying to neaten her appearance.’
    • ‘If you use a nailfile to neaten the edge, only file in one direction.’
    • ‘I was thinking about neatening it up and presenting it online in a more clearly worked-through form, but perhaps this is as good a time as any…’
    • ‘I tore the page out, then grabbed a pair of scissors and cut the loose edges away, neatened the page up and spread it flat on my bed.’
    • ‘She stood up, too hastily, all of a sudden interested in neatening the bed she had left unmade for days.’
    • ‘She shook her head and stood a stack of photos on edge, knocking them against the desktop to neaten them up.’
    • ‘The edge is uneven, and it is my job to neaten it up to make it as straight and mechanical as possible.’
    • ‘Using a long, serrated knife, neaten the ends and cut into 2cm-thick slices.’
    • ‘I neatened myself up and then slowly opened the door with a smile on my face.’
    • ‘Lay one pasta sheet on a clean surface and trim the edges to neaten.’
    • ‘There I was, neatening up my office one leisurely day in January.’
    • ‘The cover is a useful thing to neaten up cable dressing, but the latches need some work.’
    • ‘I find that this additional activity is embraced by the students, allowing them to add more color to their work and neaten up some less-than-perfect prints.’
    • ‘You just empty trashcans, neaten up your work area and answer customer service calls.’
    • ‘There is still so much to do, but I have a cleaning service scheduled for next Thursday, so it's mostly just getting the house neatened up and all the bits put away.’
    • ‘Secure and neaten the end of a serged seam with one of the following techniques.’
    • ‘She had sewn up the ragged edge where she had torn off her shirt sleeve, and neatened the piece of cloth into a proper head scarf.’
    tidy, tidy up, make neat, make neater, straighten, straighten up, smarten, smarten up, spruce up, groom, arrange, put in order, put to rights, trim
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