Definition of “cosmetic” - English Dictionary

“cosmetic” in British English

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cosmeticnoun

uk /kɒzˈmet.ɪk/ us /kɑːzˈmet̬.ɪk/

cosmeticadjective

uk /kɒzˈmet.ɪk/ us /kɑːzˈmet̬.ɪk/

(Definition of “cosmetic” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

“cosmetic” in American English

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cosmeticadjective

us /kɑzˈmet̬·ɪk/

(esp. of changes and improvements) intended to improve the appearance of something without changing its basic structure; superficial:

Whether the change is more cosmetic than concrete is a matter of opinion.

(Definition of “cosmetic” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

“cosmetic” in Business English

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cosmeticnoun [ C, usually plural ]

uk /kɒzˈmetɪk/ us

a cream or other substance that you put on your skin, hair, etc. in order to improve its appearance:

Europe is the world's largest market for cosmetics.
cosmetics industry/retailer, etc. The cosmetics industry has remained strong during the recession.

cosmeticadjective

uk /kɒzˈmetɪk/ us

used to describe a small change, etc. that is made in order to make something seem better than it was before, and that does not really affect its basic character:

We are committed to addressing the root causes of our problems rather than making only short-term cosmetic changes.

relating to a substance or treatment that is used to improve someone's appearance:

The popularity of cosmetic surgery continues to soar.

(Definition of “cosmetic” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)