lather(redirected from lathering)
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Related to lathering: slathering
be in a lather
To be very nervous, distressed, or upset. Sam is in a lather because she doesn't think her job interview went well. I told mom that we'll get there on time, but she's still in a lather about us leaving behind schedule.
*in a lather
Fig. flustered; excited and agitated. (*Typically: be ~; get [into] ~.) Now, calm down. Don't be in a lather. I always get in a lather when I'm late. I get into a lather easily.
lather something up
to apply thick soapsuds to something, such as part of the body or all of it. He lathered his face up in preparation for shaving. He lathered up his face.
1. [for a horse] to develop a foam of sweat from working very hard. The horses lathered up heavily during the race. Don't let your horse lather up!
2. [for soap] to develop thick suds when rubbed in water. This soap won't lather up, even when I rub it hard. When the soap lathers up, spread the lather on your face and rub.
3. and lather oneself up [for one] to apply soap lather to one's body. He will spend a few minutes lathering himself up before he rinses. He lathered up and then shaved.
work oneself (up) into a latherand work oneself (up) into a sweat
1. and work up a sweat Lit. to work very hard and sweat very much. (In the way that a horse works up a lather.) Don't work yourself up into a lather. We don't need to finish this today. I worked myself into a sweat getting this stuff ready.
2. . Fig. to get excited or angry. (An elaboration of work oneself up to something.) Now, now, don't work yourself up into a lather. He had worked himself into such a sweat, I was afraid he would have a stroke.
in a lather
Also, in a state. Agitated and anxious, as in Don't get yourself in a lather over this, or She was in a state over the flight cancellation. The first term alludes to the frothy sweat of a horse, the second to an upset state of mind. [Early 1800s] For a synonym, see in a stew.
in a latherINFORMAL
If someone is in a lather, they are very angry, worried or upset about something. `Brenda!' she shouted, in a great lather. `It's happened again!' Note: You can also say that someone gets into a lather or works themselves up into a lather. What's she getting into a lather about now? You have spent the past six months worrying and working yourself up into a lather over situations which are really none of your business. Note: When horses get very hot, the sweat on their coats sometimes forms a foamy substance called lather.
get into a ˈlather,
work yourself into a ˈlather(British English, informal) get anxious or angry about something, especially when it is not necessary: Look, don’t worry! There’s no point getting yourself into a lather over this!The idiom originally described the heavy sweat that you can see on the coat of a horse that has run very hard as a mass of white bubbles, like lather, the bubbles produced by mixing soap with water.
in a ˈlather(British English, informal) in a nervous, angry or excited state: What’s going on? Chris has just come rushing into my office all in a lather, saying something about a lost report.
1. To cover some surface with lather or foam: He lathered up his chin and shaved the stubble. She lathered her hair up with the new shampoo.
2. To produce or become filled or covered with lather or foam: This shaving cream lathers up as soon as you put it on your skin.
mod. alcohol intoxicated. The two brothers sat there and got lathered.
work oneself (up) into a lather
1. tv. to work very hard and sweat very much. (In the way that a horse works up a lather.) Don’t work yourself up into a lather. We don’t need to finish this today.
2. tv. to get excited or angry. (An elaboration of work oneself up to something.) Now, now, don’t work yourself up into a lather.