- the decomposition of an electrolyte by the action of an electric current passing through it
- a cosmetic procedure in which unwanted hair is removed from the body by destroying the hair roots with an electrified needle
Origin of electrolysiselectro- + -lysis
- Chemical change, especially decomposition, produced in an electrolyte by an electric current.
- Destruction of living tissue, especially of hair roots, by means of an electric current applied with a needle-shaped electrode.
Introduced by Faraday on the suggestion of the Rev. William Whewell, from electro- + -lysis (“a loosening”). Originally of tumors, later (1909) of hair removal.