If you work to iron a stubborn wrinkle out of your shirt, you're trying to smooth out a crease. A wrinkle is a dent or line where that smoothness is interrupted.

You might fret about a wrinkle in your skirt or a new wrinkle on your face. Another kind of wrinkle is more figurative: a small complication or problem that arises suddenly. You could describe a torrential rain storm as a wrinkle in your plan to film a sunny scene in your movie, for example. The Old English root is gewrinclod, "wrinkled, crooked, or winding," and it comes from the verb wrinclian, "to wind."

Definitions of wrinkle
  1. noun
    a slight depression in the smoothness of a surface
    “ironing gets rid of most wrinkles
    synonyms: crease, crinkle, furrow, line, seam
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    crow's feet, crow's foot, laugh line
    a wrinkle in the skin at the outer corner of your eyes
    the lines that form patterns on the skin (especially on the fingertips and the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet)
    frown line
    a facial wrinkle associated with frowning
    life line, lifeline, line of life
    a crease on the palm; its length is said by palmists to indicate how long you will live
    heart line, line of heart, love line, mensal line
    a crease on the palm; palmists say it indicates your emotional nature
    line of Saturn, line of destiny, line of fate
    a crease on the palm; palmists say it indicates how successful you will be
    type of:
    depression, impression, imprint
    a concavity in a surface produced by pressing
  2. noun
    a minor difficulty
    “they finally have the wrinkles pretty well ironed out”
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    type of:
    a factor causing trouble in achieving a positive result or tending to produce a negative result
  3. noun
    a clever method of doing something (especially something new and different)
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    type of:
    a way of doing something, especially a systematic way; implies an orderly logical arrangement (usually in steps)
  4. verb
    gather or contract into wrinkles or folds; pucker
    synonyms: purse
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    type of:
    make smaller
  5. verb
    make wrinkles or creases on a smooth surface; make a pressed, folded or wrinkled line in
    “The dress got wrinkled
    synonyms: crease, crinkle, crisp, ruckle, scrunch, scrunch up
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    cockle, crumple, knit, pucker, rumple
    to gather something into small wrinkles or folds
    pucker, ruck, ruck up
    become wrinkled or drawn together
    type of:
    fold, fold up, turn up
    bend or lay so that one part covers the other
  6. verb
    become wrinkled or crumpled or creased
    “This fabric won't wrinkle
    synonyms: crease, crinkle, crumple, rumple
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    type of:
    fold, fold up
    become folded or folded up
  7. verb
    make wrinkled or creased
    synonyms: crease, furrow
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    type of:
    fold, fold up, turn up
    bend or lay so that one part covers the other
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