1. [ noun ] (chemistry) a surface-active chemical widely used in industry and laundering
Related terms: wetting_agent anionic_detergent sls cationic_detergent
2. [ noun ] (chemistry) a cleansing agent that differs from soap but can also emulsify oils and hold dirt in suspension
Related terms: cleansing_agent liquid_detergent dishwasher_detergent laundry_detergent deterge
3. [ adjective ] having cleansing power
Synonyms: detersive
Related terms: purifying
Similar spelling:   deterge