Definition of smarm in English:


Line breaks: smarm
Pronunciation: /smɑːm


1 [no object] chiefly British Behave in an ingratiating way in order to gain favour: she had smarmed up to him in order to entrap him
More example sentences
  • Looking her over carefully, Joe smarmed: ‘Judging from your skin, twenty; your hair, eighteen; and your figure, twenty five.’
  • All I saw and heard were politically loaded questions with no discernible purpose while the team >smarmed their way through a restricted news content.
  • He smarmed and sneered his way through his much anticipated new comedy.
2 [with object] Smooth down (one’s hair) with water, oil, or gel: he had smarmed his hair down
More example sentences
  • By the end, he is smarming his hair down flat and wears a long leather coat.


[mass noun] Back to top  
Ingratiating behaviour: it takes a combination of smarm and confidence to persuade them
More example sentences
  • And he's spraying smarm like the worst kind of cornered politician.
  • Dang, and then I get back and they've got some pop smarm.
  • I daren't even speculate on their devilish purposes… begone with your blinding lights and televisual smarm!


mid 19th century (originally dialect in the sense 'smear, bedaub'): of unknown origin.

Definition of smarm in:

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