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How well do you know Gen-Z lingo?

Gen-Z lingo hits different.

Thanks to social media (and TikTok), we’re constantly bombarded with new slang words every day. It may be familiar to some, but if you aren’t, you might want to pick up some – especially when being called a Boomer is classified as an insult these days. There were probably times you were caught off-guard by a new word. Don’t feel bad, we were there too. When you’re bamboozled by ever-changing platforms, familiarising yourself with these slang terms can gain you some street creds. The feeling of knowing and being involved has its perks on the Internet. Especially, when you have to communicate with your siblings, kids or cousins under Gen-Z demographics.

Whether you’re a baby boomer, Gen X or a millennial trying to keep up, here is a list of popular slang words from Gen-Z lingo that you’ve (probably) encountered, and how you can use them the right way. 

gen-z lingos
Image credit: Unsplash/Simon Maage

IFYKYK

Meaning: If You Know You Know. It means if you weren’t there, you wouldn’t know. 

Example: “Last night’s concert was a memorable adventure. IFYKYK.”

SUS

Meaning: A short form for the word “suspicious” or giving the impression that something is sceptical. 

Example: “I find it a little sus that he knew exactly where I was heading.”

NO CAP

Meaning: A term to use when something is considered false or deceiving. 

Example: “That was one of the best weekend getaways to the mountains no cap!”

LOW KEY

Meaning: A word to describe a person’s emotional desires or something they want secretly.

Example: “I lowkey want to eat a big bowl of ramen right now”

HIGH KEY

Meaning: An opposite of “low key”, this word goes hand in hand with the word “high key”. It is commonly used when you want to emphasise something with confidence, without judgement. 

Example: “I have to admit, I highkey want those tickets to watch Glass Animals live.”

gen-z lingos
Image credit: Unsplash/Nathan Ziemanski

EXTRA

Meaning: To describe a person, event or object that is completely over the top who possess dramatic behaviour.

Example: “Her behaviour was so extra last night. It was an unacceptable thing for her to react that way.”

SPILL THE TEA

Meaning: When someone is about to spill secrets or juicy gossip about a certain event or someone. 

Example: “Hey Jay, spill the tea on the drama that happened last week.”

SIMP

Meaning: Someone who tries too hard (or goes above and beyond) to impress the person they like.

Example: “You got her a diamond bracelet after three dates? You’re a simp.”

GHOSTING

Meaning: It works when you’re in communication with someone for weeks or months, and they suddenly cut off all communication – texts, social media and phone calls – without explanation.

Example: “I thought we were going so well, till she ghosted me a few days ago.”

PERIODT

Meaning: An interjection used to end the discussion or by emphasising a point. 

Example:Black is King is undoubtedly the best album of 2020 – periodt.”

gen-z lingos
Image credit: Unsplash/Brooke Cagle

BOUJEE

Meaning: An abbreviation of the French word: bourgeois. A term used to describe a person that possesses a rich, elite and high-class lifestyle. Also, famously used in Migos’ song, “Bad and Boujee”.

Example: “I’m heading to Manolo after lunch to purchase those heels I wanted for the summer holiday coming up.“ “You’re only going for a few weeks and you’re buying new heels? That’s so boujee.”

SHOOK

Meaning: Shocked or surprised 

Example: “I was shook when Tom made that announcement in our group chat last night.”

BET

Meaning: To understand or knowledge a message, similar to sure, okay or roger. It can also be used to argue a point.

Example: “You would never go to those kinds of parties.” “Alright, bet.”

HIT DIFFERENT

Meaning: When two good things aren’t the same or when something you’ve experienced before doesn’t feel the same.

Example: “Eating pizza at 3 AM hits different.”

Hero image credit: Unsplash/Christin Hume; Featured image credit: Unsplash/ Shingi Rice

Amalina Anuar
Senior Writer
A writer by day and spin instructor by night. Amalina fuels her day with anything that’s covered in chocolate and breaking a sweat in the spin studio. With fashion and music as inspiration, you can find her obsessing over her favourite artist's music videos or swaying to funky tunes at live gigs.