Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
[for the effects of something] to become less; to stop gradually. The effects of the painkiller wore off and my tooth began to hurt. I was annoyed at first, but my anger wore off.
wear something off (of) somethingand wear something off
to grind or rub something off something. (Of is usually retained before pronouns.) The grinding of the bottom of the boat on the sandbanks wore the barnacles off the hull. The sand wore off the barnacles.
Diminish gradually, lose effectiveness, as in We'll wait till the drug wears off. [Late 1600s]
1. To diminish gradually in effect until gone: The drug wore off after eight hours.
2. To be gradually removed by long or hard use, attrition, or exposure: So many people touched the picture that its luster finally wore off.
3. To gradually remove something by long or hard use, attrition, or exposure: The inclement weather wore off the awning on my porch. The snow wore the shine off my car.