preen Definition

  • 1(of a bird) straighten and clean its feathers with its beak
  • 2devote effort to making oneself look attractive and then admire one's appearance

Using preen: Examples

Take a moment to familiarize yourself with how "preen" can be used in various situations through the following examples!

  • Example

    The bird preened its feathers after the rain.

  • Example

    She spent hours preening herself in front of the mirror before the party.

  • Example

    He preened his mustache while waiting for his date.

preen Synonyms and Antonyms

Synonyms for preen

Antonyms for preen

Phrases with preen

  • to take pride in or boast about something that one has done or achieved


    He always preens himself on his cooking skills.

  • to show off or behave arrogantly, often in an irritating way


    He preened and strutted around the office after getting the promotion.

  • to congratulate oneself or bask in one's own achievements


    She was preening her feathers after acing the exam.

Origins of preen

from Middle English 'prenen', meaning 'trim feathers'


Summary: preen in Brief

'Preen' [priːn] is a verb that refers to the act of birds cleaning their feathers with their beaks or humans grooming themselves to look attractive. It can also mean taking pride in one's achievements, as in 'He always preens himself on his cooking skills.' Synonyms include 'groom,' 'primp,' and 'tidy up,' while antonyms include 'dishevel' and 'mess up.'