Muffin top

Muffin top
The source of the analogy
A muffin top

"Muffin-top" is a generally pejorative slang term used to describe the phenomenon of overhanging flesh (fat) when it spills over the waistline of pants or skirts in a manner that resembles the top of a muffin spilling over its paper casing.



Muffin-top originated as Australian slang in mid-2003,[1] but has since become popular in other English-speaking countries. It may have been first popularized by the Australian television show Kath & Kim. Australia's Macquarie Dictionary named "muffin-top" the word of the year in 2006;[2] the American Dialect Society named it one of the "most creative" new terms that same year.[3]. The Oxford English Dictionary added the term to its revised online edition in March 2011[4].

According to William Safire, writing in The New York Times Magazine, "Muffin-top fills a lexical void" and "describes the roll of excess flesh spilling out primarily in front but possibly all around."[5]

Use in popular media

In November 2007, the BBC website published an article entitled "Is this the end of the muffin top?" which described a fashion trend for high-waisted shorts, trousers and miniskirts, which they believed would prevent the appearance of muffin tops. Laura Craik, however, fashion editor for London's Evening Standard, said that she did not think it spelled the end of the muffin top, but that "perhaps they will be in retreat for a while."[6]

An additional derivation is "Split Top Muffin" to describe seeing the "muffin-top" from behind with the jeans so low as to expose the top of the gluteal cleft.[citation needed]

In the fifth episode of the first season titled "Jack-tor" of the NBC sitcom 30 Rock, Jenna Maroney records a song called "Muffin Top", which becomes a chart-topper in Israel and Belgium.

See also


  1. ^ "'Muffin-top:' A bellybutton flasher losing the battle of the bulge". Taipei Times. 2005-08-28. 
  2. ^ "Australian Dictionary Names "Muffin Top" Word Of 20078". 2007-01-25. 
  3. ^ "Truthiness Voted 2005 Word of the Year by American Dialect Society". American Dialect Society. 2006-01-06. 
  4. ^ "Muffin top". Oxford English Dictionary. 2011-03-24. 
  5. ^ Safire, William (2005-08-28). "On Language: Muffin-Top". The New York Times Magazine. "When the wearer's abdomen is flat, a display of flesh above and well below the bellybutton produces an eye-catching picture of what The Scotsman in Britain has called the Britney belly-flash. However, when the wearer's midriff is flabby, a vivid culinary metaphor is used: muffin-top. As every baker knows, a muffin is a small cake that rises above its metal container. When removed from the pan, its shape is round, with the top hanging over the base of the cake like a small, harmless mushroom cloud." 
  6. ^ Winterman, Denise (2007-11-15). "Is this the end of the muffin top?". BBC. "The result is High Streets the length and breadth of the country awash with the unsightly bulges, just like the doughy overspill on a freshly baked muffin—only not so appetising." 

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • muffin top — noun (slang) A roll of fatty flesh that spills out over the top of a pair of low cut trousers. • • • Main Entry: ↑muffin …   Useful english dictionary

  • muffin top — /ˈmʌfən tɒp/ (say mufuhn top) noun Colloquial the fold of fat around the midriff which, particularly on an overweight woman, spills out over the top of tight fitting pants or skirts …   Australian English dictionary

  • muffin top — noun The roll of fat that overflows out of the top of low cut or too tight jeans …   Wiktionary

  • muffin top — UK [ˈmʌfɪnˌtɒp] / US [ˈmʌfɪnˌtɑp] noun [countable] informal a layer of fat that sticks out above the top of someone s trousers or skirt …   English dictionary

  • muffin-top — n a bulging midriff. The term, heard in 2006 especially in reference to obesity among younger people, evokes the shape of the muffins sold in coffee shops which bulge over paper holders …   Contemporary slang

  • muffin — (n.) light, small cake made with eggs, 1703, moofin, possibly from Low Ger. muffen, plural of muffe small cake; or somehow connected with O.Fr. moflet soft, tender (said of bread). Muffin top in reference to waistline bulge over tight, low jeans… …   Etymology dictionary

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