Definition of sleek in US English:



  • 1(of hair, fur, or skin) smooth and glossy.

    ‘he was tall, with sleek, dark hair’
    • ‘Lindsay is blonde, with sleek hair shimmering to her shoulders.’
    • ‘She was beautiful; her waist length chestnut colored hair was sleek and straight; it fell in a shimmering wave in front of her thin oval face on one side.’
    • ‘I ran my fingers through my sleek hair, spun one more time to look at everything again, and reached over to straighten my sheets.’
    • ‘She had pulled a neat, itchy blanket out of some obscure closet and draped it over her, and her sleek hair was pulled up into a tight knot at the back of her head.’
    • ‘Straight, sleek hair looks amazing on many people, including those with thin hair!’
    • ‘A thickset but tall serious-looking man with very dark skin and sleek black hair entered, his impressive green robe billowing around him.’
    • ‘He was a magnificent specimen with a deep mahogany coat and sleek muscles.’
    • ‘Her hair was sleek and shiny, falling a little past her shoulders but shorter in front with thin, wispy bangs.’
    • ‘Her eyes were tired and her skin scratched, hair sleek.’
    • ‘This one's long gray coat seemed aged and worn, his sleek muscles still giving off hints that his age greatly surpassed all here.’
    • ‘My chestnut hair was sleek and dark and my face was as white as unmarked paper.’
    • ‘Her hair was sleek and made her look sexy and mature.’
    • ‘He threw the book down, searched for the wineglass, then jumped out of the tub, a mass of bubbles and flesh, sleek flesh.’
    • ‘The Neotropical otter has short, dense, sleek pelage, which is described as a lustrous grayish-brown.’
    • ‘This young man was handsome, in most of the village girls' opinions anyway, with long, sleek hair tied back in a ponytail and glittering green eyes.’
    • ‘His dark skin looked smooth and sleek and seemed to stretch over his muscles.’
    • ‘He shook his head, sleek hair tumbling down into his face as usual.’
    • ‘He stood tall, with slender, but firm, shoulders and rippling, sleek muscles.’
    • ‘She hopped up onto the couch next to Kamrune, laid down and proceeded to clean her sleek fur.’
    • ‘It had sleek fur, and whiskers that stretched away from the face.’
    smooth, glossy, shiny, shining, gleaming, lustrous, silken, silky, satiny, velvety, sheeny
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    1. 1.1 (of a person or animal) having smooth, glossy skin, hair, or fur, often taken as a sign of physical fitness.
      ‘a sleek black cat’
      • ‘The southeast corner of the giri is an optimum seat during an incoming tide for the ballet performed by groups of large Napoleon wrasse and sleek eagle rays.’
      • ‘Yesterday, the animal was sleek and well-covered as he slid into the sea off East Pier in Howth harbour.’
      • ‘It looked like a sleek insect, but it charged too much, was not comfortable enough, and ultimately, proved not to be very safe.’
      • ‘The bodies of most species are sleek and streamlined.’
      • ‘Few people stop to think of what happens to the sleek racehorses at the end of their careers in which they provide entertainment on the racetrack and on millions of TV screens.’
      • ‘The two sleek horses stood close together as they feasted on the sweet grass.’
      • ‘Although the houses pictured are amazing, it's the adorable pooches and sleek cats, not the stylish decor, that are meant to stick in your mind.’
      • ‘Red coats on sleek horses are hugely outnumbered by the people who follow in their cars, or on foot.’
      • ‘Sometimes he even saw traces of a sleek wolf in his profile.’
      • ‘Nicky and Graham Hill, from Wiltshire, were accompanied by two of their salukis - sleek hunting animals bred in the Middle East for thousands of years.’
      • ‘As winter turns to spring, this sleek predator spends most of the day resting among the shallow weedbeds waiting for an unsuspecting fishy neighbour to swim by.’
      • ‘The wolf looked from the sleek cat to Ellison, whimpered again, then turned and ran past the jaguar, down the corridor and out of sight.’
      • ‘On the other side were three sleek horses, tall, with shining coats, chestnut, black, and a pinto, golden-blonde and black.’
      • ‘Jack almost steps onto the street, but is forced to jump back again when a sleek horse appears from around the corner and races past him.’
      • ‘Azure damsel fishes, only an inch or so in length, capture all possible shades of blue in one sleek swift body.’
      • ‘He stood up, and a second later a sleek black wolf was beside me.’
      • ‘He was not especially fluffy, in fact he was a very short-haired, sleek kitten, with suspicious tufts to the tops of his ears which made us suspect he was half lynx.’
      • ‘The bright sunlight nearly blinded her, causing her to stumble over Marmalade and Rosie, her two sleek cats.’
      • ‘Before we acquired Tom, our sleek black domestic feline, I'd believed their pristine media image.’
      • ‘In the spring sunshine its emerald green pastureland, sleek cattle and well-ordered fields were looking their best.’
    2. 1.2 (of a person) having a wealthy and well-groomed appearance.
      ‘his sleek and elegant sisters’
      • ‘He's sleek and well-shaped, his feathers long and healthy.’
      • ‘Jackson was all angles and possessed a stark thinness suggestive of angry starvation, whereas his sister was sleek.’
      • ‘They have that eager look of youth in their bright eyes and attack those ferocious foam balls with the enthusiasm of sleek hunters.’
      • ‘The platform was dominated by sleek lawyers and Tories.’
      • ‘Elegant and sleek Doug Glanville patrols center field, and newly blossomed Mike Lieberthal is the catcher.’
      • ‘An alcoholic and suicidal ad executive finds himself in a dive where a sleek girl in yellow is the cynosure of all the rowdy dancers.’
      • ‘She can do washed-up and tuned-out, sleazy and half-dressed, sleek and oozing with wealth.’
      • ‘The light reflecting from the hallway allowed glimpses of the sleek figure beneath.’
      • ‘He was sleek and lean, with a dancer's legs and long supple arms that looked even longer because of his sloping shoulders.’
      • ‘Smith has a stronger frame than the sleek Bennett, but durability has been a problem for him in the past.’
      • ‘By most accounts, it drew a sleek crowd and a bit of scepticism.’
      • ‘She's sleek, elegant, stylish and the epitome of New York City chic.’
      • ‘The sleek man who has taken his place is delighted to talk about his transformation.’
      • ‘Real country music has never been about the sleek and the wealthy.’
      • ‘Apart from the metamorphosis of the fat Raja into a sleek guy, the movie is simple and deals with human relationships.’
      • ‘This woman was utterly sleek and conventionally beautiful.’
      • ‘Big mistake: his carved cut was only for small, sleek people - a certain model turned fashion editor, wore it to perfection.’
      • ‘I turned to find a short, sleek woman with short brown hair and alluring brown eyes.’
      • ‘Behind her was another sleek figure laying down suppressive fire with an MA5 Assault Rifle.’
      • ‘She's chic, she's sleek, and she knows how to smoke, but I have always found her to be an actress of exceptional limitations.’
      well groomed, stylish, wealthy-looking, prosperous-looking
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    3. 1.3 (of an object) having an elegant, streamlined shape or design.
      ‘his sleek black car slid through the traffic’
      • ‘They were sleek and compact, and painted completely black.’
      • ‘And if you fancy a stand-alone, there are still sleek and stylish options available.’
      • ‘But this sleek, stylish hatchback is still considered a cut above its cousins.’
      • ‘She was sleek, scarred, deadly-looking, and experiencing some engine trouble.’
      • ‘Camera phones still have some way to go before they are truly sleek, and this shows more in the clamshell design than in a candy bar shape.’
      • ‘They were sleek, simple, perfect vehicles for attacking in large numbers and flying away without a trace.’
      • ‘The great buildings began to rise higher, and now they were sleek and black, with great panels of glass that only reflected the darkness of the black sky.’
      • ‘The products are sleek, stylish, and affordable, clearly aimed at the young and hip consumer.’
      • ‘The result is a sleek, stylish box that your spouse might even allow to be placed in the living room.’
      • ‘Then there was the film - a sleek glossy thriller, unlike any American film I knew, which to the innocent eye looked like a New Wave movie.’
      • ‘The bar looks stylish and sleek, and the location is great.’
      • ‘They were very sleek and small and had room for two in the front, and one cramped backseat for a third person in the back.’
      • ‘They're sleek enough to be worn under everyday clothes, moisture-wicking and warm, and flattering for all shapes and sizes.’
      • ‘Nowadays, the heart of the computer is more likely to be a sleek, futuristically designed container that is both easy on the eye and handy to move around as well.’
      • ‘It should be stylish yet classic, sleek and modern, but not stark.’
      • ‘This jacket can be worn with sleek pants and a stylish shirt, or a classic sweater and jeans.’
      • ‘My pair of sleek, stylish and always sexy Lycra bike shorts that I was sporting only weeks ago have been traded in for sweatpants and a fleece.’
      • ‘In one of her hands she still grasped a firearm-a smooth, sleek affair of deadly black metal.’
      • ‘It appeared sleek and comfortable in bright blue with white trim in contrast to the worn looking Communist era rolling stock nearby.’
      • ‘They are sleek and modern, filled with ethereal light, with clean lines and spare spaces.’
      streamlined, trim, aerodynamic
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    4. 1.4 Ingratiating; unctuous.
      ‘she gave Guy a sleek smile to underline her words’
      • ‘I stood beneath the tinsel, understanding her now, her sleek smile, those dangerous eyes, her dares.’
      • ‘And more, in that sleek smile, he sensed a derisory note rising out of Lubin's relationship to Morris' sister, Celia.’
      • ‘His sleek and glossy facade is something for which he is regularly - and unfairly - criticised in the British press.’


  • with object and adverbial of direction Make (the hair) smooth and glossy, typically by applying pressure or moisture to it.

    ‘her black hair was sleeked down’
    • ‘Away from the beach - where hats abound and locks are sleeked with conditioner - hair has to be perfectly coiffed and never, ever dirty.’
    • ‘His dark hair was sleeked back and he wore a robe of crimson red.’
    • ‘I glossed my lips without color, left my hair sleeked in the ponytail, wore a long beige skirt with a matching sweater and finished with flat, unattractive, brown loafers.’
    • ‘What they have succeeded in doing was a vague similarity to French hairstyles - combining a ponytail and artificially sleeked straight hair falling like a cascade on one side of the face.’
    • ‘Her platinum blonde hair was neatly cut and sleeked back, besides the odd strand which dangled over her jade eyes.’
    • ‘His wavy hair, parted high and sleeked back, was turning silver, following the lead of his tongue.’
    • ‘His blue-black hair was sleeked back from his face, his golden eyes reflecting the blazing sparks of the fire.’
    • ‘The head is lowered and the neck extended so that the bill is parallel to body's main axis, and the feathers are sleeked against the body.’
    • ‘So these subtle communications play a substantial role in the same way as mammals display fear by sleeking their hair over their head.’
    • ‘I had sleeked back my black hair and put on a black sweater.’
    • ‘Blond hair met the bottom of his ears, sleeked back slightly.’
    • ‘This open-winged posture is held while the bill is closed, the tail is fanned, the plumage is sleeked, and the body is motionless.’
    • ‘I stumbled out of the room, icy sweat sleeking down my forehead and dripping off my shivering palms.’
    • ‘Then thinking of him without make-up and his hair neatly sleeked back she shuddered.’
    • ‘Iselle climbed into the car and sleeked back her hair with her hand before engaging the gears and pulling off again into the night.’
    • ‘There he sat, Mr. Dorman, skinny as a skeleton and pale as one with his dyed brown hair sleeked back, sitting and stroking his greasy mustache looking like a weasel.’
    • ‘Today however his hair was combed and sleeked back with loads of gel, his bangs brushed over his right eye; hanging into his face.’
    smooth, sleek, flatten
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Late Middle English: a later variant of slick (adjective and verb).