Definition of complexion in English:

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Pronunciation: /kəmˈplekSHən/


1The natural color, texture, and appearance of a person’s skin, especially of the face: an attractive girl with a pale complexion
More example sentences
  • She had waist length, ebony hair and her skin complexion wasn't too pale nor too dark.
  • It is believed to help clear the complexion and give the skin a fine texture and bring out its natural glow.
  • My only worry is, I don't think orange is a colour that suits my complexion.
skin, skin color, skin tone;
2The general aspect or character of something: Congress’s new complexion became boldly apparent last summer wind, rain, and road construction have gradually changed Baja’s complexion
More example sentences
  • Nearly every song on A Treasury is a show-stopper, and the track selection is fine, spotlighting Drake's weighty insights and limning the various complexions of his character.
  • Pronger and Blake can change the complexion of the game just by being on the ice, and believe me, they will be on the ice a lot.
  • That, obviously, would have changed the complexion of the whole game.
perspective, angle, slant, interpretation;
appearance, light, look
type, kind, sort;
nature, character, stamp, ilk, kidney



Pronunciation: /kəmˈplekSHənd/
[often in combination]: they were both fair-complexioned


Middle English: via Old French from Latin complexio(n-) 'combination' (in late Latin 'physical constitution'), from complectere 'embrace, comprise'. The term originally denoted physical constitution or temperament determined by the combination of the four bodily humors, hence sense 1 (late 16th century) as a visible sign of this.

  • This came via Old French from Latin complectere ‘embrace, comprise’. The term originally referred to a person's physical constitution to temperament once believed to be determined by a combination of the four bodily humours: blood, phlegm, yellow bile, and black bile. This gave rise, in the late 16th century, to the meaning ‘natural colour and texture of a person's skin’ as a visible sign of this temperament. Complex (mid 17th century), something that comprises many things, is from the same source.

Words that rhyme with complexion

abjection, affection, circumspection, collection, confection, connection, convection, correction, defection, deflection, dejection, detection, direction, ejection, election, genuflection, imperfection, infection, inflection, injection, inspection, insurrection, interconnection, interjection, intersection, introspection, lection, misdirection, objection, perfection, predilection, projection, protection, refection, reflection, rejection, resurrection, retrospection, section, selection, subjection, transection, vivisection

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: com·plex·ion

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