Origin of detergentClassical Latin detergens, present participle of detergere: see deterge
a cleansing substance; specif., a surface-active chemical preparation, as, now esp., a linear alkyl sulfonate, that is capable of emulsifying dirt or oil
A cleansing substance that acts similarly to soap but is made from chemical compounds rather than fats and lye.
Having cleansing power.
OriginSee also: détergent
From French détergent.