Definition of makeup in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈmākˌəp/


1Cosmetics such as lipstick or powder applied to the face, used to enhance or alter the appearance.
Example sentences
  • Stage make-up is necessarily heavy, in order to be seen, and seen as natural, by the audience.
  • Apply your usual foundation make-up or powder to cover any imperfections and even out your skin tone.
  • Just before going on stage, the make-up lady had dabbed powder on my face.
cosmetics, maquillage;
greasepaint, face paint
informal war paint
2The composition or constitution of something: studying the makeup of ocean sediments
More example sentences
  • The important and terrifying thing is what's happening inside the US, to the constitution and make-up of the country.
  • Geochemistry involves studying the chemical make-up of rocks, the chemistry of water or any geological material.
  • To the extent that the physical make-up of organisms provides heritable variation, it becomes a malleable clay that can be sculpted by selection.
composition, constitution, structure, configuration, arrangement, organization, formation
2.1The combination of qualities that form a person’s temperament: a nastiness that had long been in his makeup
More example sentences
  • Philosophy Like science is heavily influenced by the psychological make-up of the person doing the thinking.
  • The emotional and psychological make-up of a young person can often be forgotten in the rush for top points.
  • Of equal importance in experiential terms, however, was the psychological make-up of individuals as well as communities and cultures.
character, nature, temperament, personality, disposition, mentality, persona, psyche
informal what makes someone tick
3 Printing The arrangement of type, illustrations, etc., on a printed page: page makeup
More example sentences
  • Seamus started his own career as an apprentice compositor, during the days when all page make-up was in hot metal.
  • Then there was the excitement of starting to do our own page make-up, having bought a Compugraphic typesetting machine.
4North American A supplementary test or assignment given to a student who missed or failed the original one: [as modifier]: Tony has a makeup exam
More example sentences
  • A busy teacher of thirty students who allows three make-ups per student, however, is agreeing to ninety make-ups a year!
  • Some teachers save one Saturday a month for make-ups, and all lessons for the month may be made up only on that day.
  • Another teacher may say, ‘I have a firm makeup policy and my students all understand it, and I have no problems with make-ups.’

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: make·up

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