The Newest Teen Slang Trends of 2022
It often seems like teenagers' sole mission is to reject the way their parents do things, from fashion to music to how they use the English language. Teen slang words are a constantly evolving dictionary that makes anyone above age 22 feel like they woke up in a foreign land.
But this stage too shall pass, and in the meantime parents of teens don't need to feel clueless each time their adolescent starts to speak. (Yeet? Fleek? Help!)
If you've just recently deciphered omg, lol, and tbh, or you finally figured out why everyone loathes a Karen, I hate to break it to you, Boomer, but your slang needs a major 2022 refresh. Rather than spend hours scrolling through the confusion and horror that's often found in the depths of Urban Dictionary, we've compiled the most popular Gen Z slang and sayings right here.
You can safely bet your teens will continue to roll their eyes nearly every time you speak, but proper use of these new slang words and slang phrases will earn you at least grudging respect. Although I wouldn't go around speaking like a TikTok teen at the office...that's just majorly cringe.
Teens today are busy - sometimes too busy even for spaces, as evidenced by this mashup abbreviation of "Am I right?" This word often doesn't require a response and is meant to emphasize something that both parties agree on. "The weekend could not get here sooner, amirite."
When teenagers use this word, they're usually not talking about someone who's been hitting the gym. Instead, fit is short for outfit, as in, "That fit is on point! Do you have a hot date or something?"
When your teen wants to express a feeling or desire without coming on too strong, she may add the adjective low-key or lowkey to help downplay it. "They're announcing who made varsity today, and I'm low-key freaking out," or, "He's low-key cute, but I'm keeping my options open." (Predictably, highkey means the exact opposite.)
When a relationship is more than friends but less than a couple, it might be a situationship. Think of it as the modern counterpart to the old Facebook relationship status option, "It's complicated."
The exact meaning may vary, but savage, like dope or fierce, is definitely a compliment. A teen may call their friend savage for a particularly well-done insult or retort. Doing something savage shows bravery or a total lack of care/fear.
As Megan Thee Stallion and Beyonce taught us, anyone or anything savage refers to something extremely cool and unbothered.
An opp (short for opponent) is an enemy or competitor, someone who is working against you in some way. The next time you deny your teen's request for cash or an outing on a school night, you might find yourself in the opp category.
Sussy is an increasingly popular alternative to the slang term "sus," short for suspicious. It entered the mainstream thanks to the video game Among Us and now refers to anyone or anything that seems a little...off.
When something hits different, it is significantly better than usual, as in, "A nap on a cold, rainy afternoon just hits different."
To sleep on something is to overlook its importance or value. "Don't sleep on that new guidance counselor; I heard she used to be a backup dancer for Doja Cat."
To yassify something or someone is to glam them up until they're almost unrecognizable. It originally referred to influencers' common use of beauty filters on social media, but in late 2021 a YassifyBot account popped up on Twitter and began churning out images of famous faces (think, Queen Elizabeth or Severus Snape) digitally enhanced until they look like Bratz dolls.
Pronounced "mook-bong," this form of entertainment originated in South Korea and features live footage of someone eating large amounts of food. Its popularity gained steam on YouTube during the coronavirus (or "rona," to your teen) pandemic, and many fans find the videos and their accompanying eating noises comforting and relaxing.
An acronym for "Where you at?" that's usually used in text messages. Feel free to use it the next time your teen breaks curfew: "WYA, get home NOW."
Moods are something your teenager has in bulk. But when it comes to Gen Z slang, mood refers to something the speaker can relate to or agrees with. For example, after a tough day, your teen might post a photo of a screaming toddler with the caption "Mood" to express solidarity.Mutuals
Mutuals, sometimes shorted to moots, are two people who follow each other and interact on social media. It's a common word on TikTok and other platforms to refer to internet friends.
If you know what this one stands for, you know. (See what I did there?) Often used on social media alongside more obscure TV show or movie references, or to caption an otherwise unlabeled photo.
When you're looking your best, your teen might grace you with the compliment "snatched," or particularly stylish. Savor it, because moments like this don't come around often.
I'll avoid literally spelling it out for you, but just imagine three more letters in the middle and you'll get the picture. Although sometimes used as a term of endearment among friends, you usually don't want to be labeled a bih.
In slang terms, drip is a synonym for style, particularly the fashionable or sexy kind. If millennials had swag, Generation Z has drip.
Fire / Trash
Think of these two as opposite ends of the cool spectrum. Something wonderful is fire, while something terrible is trash. In other words, it's like Grease versus Grease 2.
When something inspires aspirational envy, or two things go together extremely well, the reaction is, "Goals." One example: "Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds' marriage is goals." Another example: "Parents keeping up with their teenager's lingo for more than a month? Goals."
Looking for more slang? Check out: The Newest Teen Slang Trends of 2021.