Definition of irritating in US English:



  • 1Causing annoyance, impatience, or mild anger.

    ‘an irritating child’
    • ‘But they have, all of them, one particularly irritating little habit.’
    • ‘She looked at him, casting him an irritating, exasperated look.’
    • ‘The endless instrument tuning got a bit irritating at times too.’
    • ‘I realised that I'm picking up one of my dad's most irritating habits.’
    • ‘Imagine if that irritating receptionist didn't bother to smile as she told you everything you want is absolutely out of the question.’
    annoying, infuriating, exasperating, maddening, trying, tiresome, vexing, vexatious, irksome, galling, troublesome, bothersome, provoking, displeasing
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  • 2Causing irritation to a body part.

    ‘the substance may be irritating to eyes and skin’
    • ‘The hawking is very irritating to the inflamed throat and is often the reason the symptoms persist.’
    • ‘I am suffering from a urinary tract infection, which has subsequently resulted in an irritating rash on my face and body.’
    • ‘Instead of sunscreens, use sunblocks, which are less irritating to sensitive skin.’
    • ‘This solution matches your body's salinity, and baking soda makes it less irritating to your sinuses.’
    • ‘Alcohol can also make the stomach more sensitive to the irritating effect of aspirin.’