Millennial Lingo That Needs To Retire Early

’goals’,’ ‘adulting’, ‘hack’, here’s why you are no longer cool

Web Culture
4 min read
Millennial Lingo That Needs To Retire Early

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Now let me get this out- I don’t know what the cool kids are saying. Leave me with a bunch of Drake-listening, fidget-spinning teens who say things like ‘You’re from the 90s, right?’; and I would be ‘lost boots’ in a maze of ‘lits’ and ‘turnts’.

This is because Gen Z has a real gift- a gift for churning out new words or utterances, their nature akin to their hectic lifestyles. There’s a new word on the block faster than you can say emoji.  Exhibit A: ‘Bae’ was probably made up by a time-crunched teenager, who had to make the tough decision between texting his girlfriend and writing a college application. Snap Trap.

This is a list of seemingly mainstream words used in print journalism, beauty blogs, conversations, travel posts and yes, Instagram captions. These are words that I (may be) equally guilty of using, cringe every time I hear it or are just so dated they need an emergency replacement.

1. Routine

Reason for replacement: Most of us don’t have a ten-step Korean skin care routine or our makeup routine consists of kajal and lip-balm, which doesn’t even count as a routine. And don’t even get me started on my fitness routine.

See Also: regime, regimen

(Photo: Romita Roy)

2. Hack

Reason for replacement: Unless you’re talking about the verb used to detach someone’s head with a saw à la Game of Thrones or the reason why Adrian Lamo went to prison, this word has reached its saturation point. The Internet seems to be passing off everyday tidbits of instruction as life hacks. It gets worse when you have to watch a 12-minute Facebook video of a liquid soap dispenser being inserted into a lemon to spray juice. I’d much rather just squeeze the lemon, thank you.

3. Goals

Reason for replacement: You already know the grass is greener on the other side of your Instagram screen. In fact, that is exactly what exhibitionist social media pictures are all about. These #couplegoals, #makeupgoals are not something you’re actually going to achieve, so who needs that kind of blow to one’s self-esteem?


3. Basically

Reason for replacement: Indians are all about the ‘basically’. “I live in Mumbai but basically I’m from Lucknow.” It comes off as if you’re trying to dumb it down for the other person. Also the usage is incorrect.

4. Adulting

Reason for replacement: “I made myself breakfast today that wasn’t Cheerios. #adulting”

“I’m adulting today so I need two more coffees.”

“I didn’t repeat underwear two days in a row. #adulting”

Annoying yet?  Thought so. Unless you’re filing taxes. Then you’re alright.

5. Mood

Reason for replacement: A picture of a watermelon wearing sunglasses is not a mood. Neither is the moon filter. Or a picture of yourself on a yacht. You can’t be in the mood for that, you already are on it. See? Elementary.


6. Influencer

Reason for replacement: The whole point of being an ‘influencer’ is that you don’t have to call yourself one. It sounds like one of those cocktails on the menu, which pubs use to put in their cheap alcohol.

7. Literally

Reason for replacement: This is so two decades ago. You did not ‘literally die shopping’. That does not make literal sense.

8. Awesome-sauce

Reason for replacement: You know the feeling of hair standing at the back of your neck when someone scratches their nails on a blackboard? Feels the same way.

See also: amazeballs

(The author is fashion designer and pens the blog, A Girl Named Romita that mainly focuses on millennial lifestyle, fashion and pop culture. In her words, it is judgement free, hate free and gluten free.)

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Topics:  English   Words   Dictionary 

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