- The definition of a shoehorn is a curved piece of plastic or metal that helps you to get your heel into the back of your shoe.
When you go to try on shoes and the salesman uses a plastic curved piece to help your heel slide more easily into the back of the shoe, this curved piece is an example of a shoehorn.
- Shoehorn is to try to force something into a space that is too small.
When you try to force an entire house full of furniture into a one-bedroom apartment, this is an example of a time when you try to shoehorn.
transitive verbshoe·horned, shoe·horn·ing, shoe·horns
(third-person singular simple present shoehorns, present participle shoehorning, simple past and past participle shoehorned)
- (literally) To use a shoehorn.
- To force (something) into (a tight space); to squeeze (something) into (a schedule, etc); to exert great effort to insert or include (something).
- I shoehorned his dozen burgeoning bags into the backseat of my tiny car, and off we went.
- His staff want to shoehorn an extra stop into his already packed campaigning schedule.