Definition of surfactant in English:


Line breaks: sur|fac¦tant
Pronunciation: /səˈfakt(ə)nt


  • A substance which tends to reduce the surface tension of a liquid in which it is dissolved.
    More example sentences
    • The primary conditioning ingredients are cationic surfactants, silicones, and polymers.
    • Silicone surfactants, and amine and tin catalysts, are also used.
    • Research on surfactants and membrane solubilization showed that anionic surfactants interact more with lipid bilayers.


1950s: from surf(ace)-act(ive) + -ant.

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