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also blue·ing  (blo͞o′ĭng)
1. Any of various coloring agents used to counteract the yellowing of laundered fabrics.
2. A rinsing agent used to give a silver tint to gray or graying hair.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


or blue•ing

(ˈblu ɪŋ)

a substance, as indigo, used to whiten clothes or give them a bluish tinge.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


Bluing was a blue dye that was put in the rinse water in very dilute quantities before the days of bleach to counteract the yellowing of cotton goods generally observed after washing. A blue light of the proper intensity combines with yellow light to give a near white. (Note that this effect involves the mixing of light, not pigments.) The yellowing was mainly caused by the soaps that were available before the age of detergents when very harsh soaps were the standard.
1001 Words and Phrases You Never Knew You Didn’t Know by W.R. Runyan Copyright © 2011 by W.R. Runyan
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.bluing - used to whiten laundry or hair or give it a bluish tinge
dye, dyestuff - a usually soluble substance for staining or coloring e.g. fabrics or hair
2.bluing - a process that makes something blue (or bluish)
chemical action, chemical change, chemical process - (chemistry) any process determined by the atomic and molecular composition and structure of the substances involved
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Blue Wonder will only bond to itself and bare ferrous metals and will not bond to or affect the existing Factory Bluing on your gun.
We have bruised nouns and verbs in to new meanings, blackening and bluing the language to suit our purpose, subverting the traditional so it will serve our humanity.
Then, in August 1990, Goto's co-workers presented him with X-ray data that revealed the true nature of the bluing agent for Day flower, Commelina communis.