a swab consisting of a short stick of wood, paper, or plastic with wads of cotton at one or both ends
Webster’s New World College Dictionary, Fourth Edition, compiled by the
editors of Webster’s New World Dictionaries. Copyright © 2010 by Houghton
Mifflin Harcourt. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.
Word origin of 'Q-tip'< Q-Tips, a trademark for such swabs