Every year, we take our annual look into Millennial slang to see what language is really sticking with our audience. More recently we updated our research to bring you the biggest and/or breakout slang of the past couple months. The word cloud above represents what 200 Millennials aged 14-24 from across the country said were the words they and their friends have been using the most.
What we learned:
- “Swag” and “YOLO” are back and surprisingly big; they seemed to have gotten overused in 2013 but then later showed resurgence due to their versatility. We see Millennials using the words both sincerely and ironically.
- “Ratchet” has had some serious staying power over the past year especially amongst teen girls, despite increased dialogue around cultural appropriation
- The movie Mean Girls mistakenly claimed that “Fetch” would never happen.
- Bae: your significant other; stands for “before anyone else”
- Thot: stands for “that ho over there”
- Basic: used to describe a person or activity that is too obvious or vapid
- Turn up: getting wild, most likely drunk or high
- Slay: to succeed in something; similar to “killing it”
And while they’re not included in the above word cloud, these phrases are also gaining traction:
- (Throwing) Shade: dissing someone or casually disrespecting them; this is an older slang phrase that has had a recent resurgence
- Slide into the DMs: when you take flirting with someone on Twitter to the next level by smoothly moving the conversation from the public to private messages.