Simplemost

Actions

The list of the year’s most popular slang terms is out. How many do you know?

The list of the year’s most popular slang terms is out. How many do you know?
Posted at 5:30 AM, Dec 14, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-14 11:43:15-05

I live with two teenage girls — and a husband who gets a kick out of mimicking them. So, on any given day, there’s a unique and ever-changing lexicon of terms getting tossed around my household.

When I talk to other parents in this stage of raising children, they say it’s the same in their homes. We are staying current whether we like it or not. Frankly, knowing the latest youth vernacular hasn’t helped me much, since these new words are rarely sticky. Remember “on fleek”? Yeah, no one else does, either.

Still, I was curious when I heard that the language learning site Preply takes an annual survey of parents of teens (aged 12-18) on this subject.

This year they asked 682 parents across the country to name which words their teen is currently using. Here’s the top 10.

1. “Sus”

About 62% of teens use this word, which generally means “suspicious” or “suspect.” Teens have basically shortened it — and if you ever played the game Among Us, you probably heard it there first.

2. “Bet”

Around 59% of teens use this term, which is a shortened version of “You bet.” It means “I agree” or “OK,” but it can also be used to argue a point, as in, make a bet.

Tony Kaizen (@tonykaizen), a TikToker who has a podcast about learning English, explains here:

@tonykaizen American slang: Bet #englishtips #slang #ingles #idiomas ♬ original sound – Tony Kaizen

MORE: ‘Pumpkin spice,’ ‘plant-based’ and ‘yeet’ among 370 words added to dictionary

3. “Yeet”

You’ll encounter 57% of teens using this one, but since it’s been around since 2014 you may already know it. It was added to Merriam-Webster’s dictionary in 2022 and its definition is basically “to throw,” but with an emphasis on forcefulness. You don’t care if the thing you’re throwing will be broken.

4. “Salty”

According to the Urban Dictionary, salty means, “When you are upset over something little.” It’s anger with a bit of sourness and bitterness thrown in, and has its roots in U.S. Navy vernacular. Apparently, 51% of teens use it.

5. “Cap”

A little under half, or 49%, of teens, use this word as another way of saying that someone is lying, especially if there’s no point to the lie. When you say “no cap,” it’s as if you’re saying “for real” or “I’m not lying.” Urban Dictionary gives its origin as urban gangsta culture by way of Northern Ireland, and says it’s short for “kneecap.”

Rachel’s English (@rachels_english), who teaches pronunciation on her account, explains it in this TikTok:

@rachels_english🧢American Slang | ENGLISH VOCABULARY♬ original sound – Rachel’s English

MORE: Oxford University Press names ‘Rizz’ word of the year for 2023

6. “Extra”

You may have heard this one, used by 47% of teens. The definition, per Urban Dictionary, is “being over the top, excessive, dramatic behavior.” According to Pure Wow, this common internet slang word was inspired by Turkish chef Nusret Gökçe, aka Salt Bae, who tossed salty seasoning in a dramatically “extra” way that became a meme.

7. “Bussin”

Used by 43% of teens, this word is a way of saying something is really good. This term also comes out of Black vernacular and often refers to food. It became popular on TikTok, of course, and you’ll hear it in a lot of rap songs.

Here’s a young girl saying “bussin” properly on @shyannmorgan’s Tiktok:

@shyannmorgan not the pizza bussin bussin 😂😭 #viral #baby #foryou ♬ original sound – shyann morgan

8. “Bougie”

Even without a definition, you can probably guess the meaning of this word, used by 42% of teens. It’s a form of the word “bourgeois,” which generally describes a materialistic middle-to-upper-class person. USA Today notes that “bougie” can simply be a word you’d use to describe high-end tastes, but has different meanings based on context.

9. “Sheesh”

One definition, according to the Urban Dictionary, is “An expression when you’re impressed or amazed by something.” It’s often pronounced in a shrill way, emphasizing the “ee” sound, as in this TikTok clip from @kingjulio featuring a frog. You’ll hear it from 40% of teens.

@meetjulio Ayo dm me fo meetup #julio #slime ♬ Sheeeshhh – King Julio

10. “Drip”

This one’s a different word for “cool,” used by 39% of teens. It’s a hip-hop term that became popular again around 2015 when it started appearing in music from Houston-based artists. It may be based on the slang term “sauce” — as in, “He’s dripping sauce.”

You can read the full list of most used slang words at Preply. It includes more than 35 words like “simp,” “cheugy,” “stan,” “mid” and others you may have heard your teen say. There’s also a list of the slang terms parents know the best. You might want to check and see if you know them all.


The list of the year’s most popular slang terms is out. How many do you know? originally appeared on Simplemost.com, helping make the most out of life.

> > SIGN UP for the Simplemost weekly newsletter < <