rub away


Also found in: Dictionary.

rub away

1. To exert pressure on and move in continuous contact with something for some extended period of time. A noun or pronoun can be used between "rub" and "away." Often followed by "at something." He rubbed away at the rare coin with a polishing cloth to make it shine like new. I've been rubbing away for nearly 10 minutes, but I just can't seem to get this stain out. Something must be rubbing away at the tire, because it shouldn't be wearing down this quickly.
2. To clean, clear, or remove something with a rubbing motion. A noun or pronoun can be used between "rub" and "away." Let me just rub some of this dirt and grime away so I can make out the inscription on the headstone. This new phone has a really slick design, but I feel like I'm constantly rubbing away fingerprints smudges.
See also: away, rub

rub something away

to remove something by chafing or rubbing. See if you can rub some of the dirt away. Rub away the dirt if you can.
See also: away, rub
References in periodicals archive ?
It is taking us a long time to rub away the tar that has been painted on us for no fault of ours," one writer said.
Finally, rub away any dried glue around the edges with your finger.
Thousands of people lined up at Covent Garden to rub away at a new pounds 16,000 Chevrolet Captiva.
When the paint was dry, they used sandpaper to rub away the paint outside the lines, again brushing away any dust.
Visitors aren't supposed to even touch the soft limestone with their hands for fear they'll rub away the structures' delicate sculptural details.
My ophthalmologist says to soak the eyelids with warm water and then to rub away the crusts with a washcloth.
Two trained masseurs will reportedly knead, chop and rub away aches and pains of weary travellers for MYR28.
Dermabrasion is like using heavy-duty sandpaper to rub away the rough upper layers on a piece of wood.
SIR - Jeremy Clarkson, forever in the news, is much like a scratch card: when you rub away the bluster and the endless stirring, underneath you will regularly find little gems of insight into modern Britain.
The app allows people to rub away the painting's built-up layers to see how it was done.
Staff will see an image of the food on the bedside touch screen and can then rub away the picture to show the amount of food consumed.
Between the January 4 and 31, treat yourself to a top-to-toe renewal with Energising Body Wash, Energising Body Lotion and body brush to wash, scrub and rub away dull winter skin.
1 Dampen a white rag with isopropyl alcohol and rub away heel marks.