Acrylic is a kind of plastic, fabric, fiber, or paint that's made from acrylic acid. You might knit your mom an acrylic hat if she's allergic to wool.

Anything made of acrylic is synthetic — it's not a natural substance or fiber, but was made in a lab or factory from artificial materials. Acrylic paint is a quick-drying, water-soluble kind of paint that artists often use instead of oil paint or watercolors. The original meaning of acrylic was "containing acryl," from acrolein, the sharp, bitter liquid in onions, rooted in the Latin words acer, "sharp," and olere, "to smell."

Definitions of acrylic
  1. noun
    a glassy thermoplastic; can be cast and molded or used in coatings and adhesives
    synonyms: acrylate resin, acrylic resin
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    Acrilan, polypropenonitrile
    acrylic resin used to make a strong soft crease-resistant fabric (trade name Acrilan)
    polymethyl methacrylate
    a transparent plastic used as a substitute for glass
    Lucite, Perspex
    a transparent thermoplastic acrylic resin
    Plexiglas, plexiglass
    a light transparent weather resistant thermoplastic
    type of:
    synthetic resin
    a resin having a polymeric structure; especially a resin in the raw state; used chiefly in plastics
  2. noun
    a synthetic fabric
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    an acrylic fabric resembling wool
    an acrylic fiber or the lightweight crease-resistant fabric made with Orlon yarns
    type of:
    cloth, fabric, material, textile
    artifact made by weaving or felting or knitting or crocheting natural or synthetic fibers
  3. noun
    polymerized from acrylonitrile
    synonyms: acrylic fiber
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    type of:
    man-made fiber, synthetic fiber
    fiber created from natural materials or by chemical processes
  4. noun
    used especially by artists
    synonyms: acrylic paint
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    type of:
    paint, pigment
    a substance used as a coating to protect or decorate a surface (especially a mixture of pigment suspended in a liquid); dries to form a hard coating
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