Meaning of astringent

as•trin•gent

Pronunciation: (u-strin'junt), [key]
— adj.
  1. contracting; constrictive; styptic.
  2. harshly biting; caustic: his astringent criticism.
  3. stern or severe; austere.
  4. sharply incisive; pungent: astringent wit.
—n.
  1. a substance that contracts the tissues or canals of the body, thereby diminishing discharges, as of mucus or blood.
  2. a cosmetic that cleans the skin and constricts the pores.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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