Definition of slick in English:


Syllabification: slick
Pronunciation: /slik


  • 1(Of an action or thing) done or operating in an impressively smooth, efficient, and apparently effortless way: a slick piece of software
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    • Today's pirates are slick professional operations filling Britain's airwaves with everything from street music to extreme political messages.
    • Py's stagecraft, with its rolling trolleys, red curtains and golded frames like religious icons, is slick and efficient, but not dazzling.
    • Brazil's slick passing game gathered pace, helped by Turkey's defensive errors, but the score was unchanged at halftime.
    efficient, smooth, smooth-running, polished, well-organized, well run, streamlined
  • 1.1Smooth and superficially impressive but insincere or shallow: the brands are backed by slick advertising he’s a slick con man
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    • Don't be fooled by the slick advertising and deceptively impressive hardware and launch titles.
    • Far from being slick and superficial, it is, he says, a natural empathy with the listener which wins their sympathy and support and shows the best side of the politician.
    • But this effort is based on action, not slick advertising.
    glib, smooth, fluent, plausible
  • 2(Of skin or hair) smooth and glossy: a dandy-looking dude with a slick black ponytail
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    • He was tall with black, slick hair and brown eyes.
    • Maria soon returned with her father, a burly man with a curled black mustache and slick hair.
    • His straight slick hair shone like silver in the moonlight.
    shiny, glossy, shining, sleek, smooth, oiled
  • 2.1(Of a surface) smooth, wet, and slippery: she tumbled back against the slick, damp wall
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    • The few other people that were there watched in confusion as he soared across the slick surface and crashed into the wall.
    • We get out and shuffle cautiously on the slick surface.
    • It skidded across the slick surface and fell off the other side with a sickly thunk.


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  • 1An oil slick.
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    • Nicholls was competing in France in 2002 when the slick from the oil tanker Prestige hit the beach.
    • Just as frightening, and equally lethal, is the summer equivalent - a slick of engine oil on the road and a slight drizzle on top.
    • I informed the pilot there was a large slick of engine oil down the starboard pylon.
  • 1.1A small smear or patch of a glossy or wet substance, especially a cosmetic: a slick of lip balm
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    • There was an oily slick on top and far too many noodles, flabbily over - cooked.
    • Blot the whole lip area again and top with a slick of gloss.
    • If you do feel your blood pressure starting to rise, simply slap on a slick of stress-relieving peppermint oil lip gloss.
  • 2 (usually slicks) A race car or bicycle tire without a tread, for use in dry weather conditions.
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    • He didn't have much time in the car before the race and going out on slicks in those conditions was a real test,’ reckoned Lockie.
    • This produced frantic activity on the grid as drivers decided whether to stay with wet tyres or change to slicks.
    • It's never much fun driving over snow or ice on slicks, although I have gained a lot of experience and confidence in this sort of situation.
  • 3North American informal A glossy magazine.
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    • Although the stories are not his best work, he and his agent must have been pleased to receive the higher rates that the slicks were paying.
    • Similarly the original story appeared in a slick in 1933.


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  • 1 [with object] Make (one’s hair) flat, smooth, and glossy by applying water, oil, or cream to it: his damp hair was slicked back [as adjectivein combination]: (slicked) his slicked-down hair
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    • Her straight chin length black hair was slicked back with water, and ended at the back of her neck.
    • The water had slicked back Jess's hair, exposing the garish black-stitched scar by her left temple.
    • His hair was cutely slicked back; his eyes were bright and glossy.
    smooth, sleek, grease, oil, gel
  • 1.1Cover with a film of liquid; make wet or slippery: she woke to find her body slicked with sweat [as adjectivein combination]: (-slicked) a rain-slicked road
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    • His body was sweat slicked and burning when she finally came back to earth.
    • It's cold, but she guesses that's probably down more to the viscous sheen of sweat slicked across her body than to the weather itself.
    • There is butter here, lots of it, and its liquid richness coats the dry-curd feta and slicks the crêpes.
  • 2 (slick someone/something up) North American Make someone or something smart, tidy, or stylish.
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    • She slicked her hair up, did her makeup, and ran down the stairs.
    • However, I can say after purposely firing multiple consecutive shots without swabbing the bore (under test conditions) that hot water slicked the rifle up to brand new in a few short minutes.
    • The gel ran through her fingers as she slicked her hair up.



More example sentences
  • Jazz, Latin and classical stylings combine smoothly and slickly.
  • He is convinced that a slickly produced play reflecting the fascinating social and cultural environment of Central Australia could find a national and international audience.
  • ‘Be a part of the revolution,’ says the slickly made ad.


More example sentences
  • The purpose of it came to bear in making this feature, where talking, movement, primitivity, some slickness, and a recognition of the power of music all had to play big.
  • They loathe designer slickness and gloss and love accidents, imperfections, discontinuities and visible signs of process.
  • It's about context and usability, not just slickness or drama.


Middle English (in the senses 'glossy' and 'make smooth or glossy'): probably from Old English and related to Old Norse slíkr 'smooth'; compare with sleek.

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