Fancy a froyo, anyone?
Or a squeeze of sriracha on your hamburger?
But please, whatever you do, don’t ghost me.
I want you to stick around for the awesome post I have here for you today.
What am I talking about?
Well, some of you may not have heard these words before, and the reason is that these are new words in English that have recently been added to the dictionary.
Yes, the English language is very much alive and growing, with more new words added to the dictionary every year. Today, we’re going to learn 25 brand new English words that native speakers use all the time.
But before we get to that list, you may be wondering where new English words come from, and some quick tips to master them in the shortest time possible.
Where Do New Words Come From?
Every year, hundreds of new words are added to the English dictionary. Of course, not all new words make it into the dictionary. The ones that do are those that have been used frequently in a wide range of contexts and are found to be useful to English communication.
New English words may come from foreign words that have been adapted into the English language over time. For instance, if you love spicy food, you’ll be pleased to know that the word sriracha (a spicy chili and garlic sauce invented in Thailand) has been added to the dictionary.
Some new words are actually old words that have been given new or additional meanings. For example, ghost is no longer a word you only use around Halloween time, to refer to a spirit. It now has an additional meaning, which we’ll show you in our list below.
For more spooky old words used in new ways, listen to the dialogue in scary TV shows and films that have been made recently. This video from the FluentU English channel on YouTube talks about several haunting, creepy shows on Netflix that can help you scare up (find) some new English words and expressions.
And check out the FluentU English channel to find other ways to learn trendy new English words. When you subscribe and hit the notification bell, you’ll be able to stay up to date with tips for learning all the latest English slang.
New slang words aren’t just old words used in new ways. New words may also be formed from the blending or shortening of certain words or phrases. For instance, a key ingredient in Italian cuisine is extra virgin olive oil—it’s a real tongue twister, but thankfully, it’s now been shortened to simply EVOO as you’ll see soon.
Or right now, if you want a learn 12 of the twenty-five trendy words right away!
The Quickest Ways to Master New English Vocabulary
- Make your own personal dictionary: One of the most effective ways to master English vocabulary is to create your own dictionary of words that are most important or difficult for you. Write down a list of new words you wish to learn and make notes about their meanings and usages.
Mastering new vocabulary takes time and practice, so be sure to keep your personal dictionary with you to reference and refresh your memory whenever you need to. This will help prevent you from forgetting words easily.
- Watch real-world English videos on FluentU: Why wait for new English words to officially enter the dictionary? FluentU teaches you English words the way today’s native speakers actually use them.
Every video comes with interactive subtitles. Click any word and FluentU will give you an instant definition and example sentences! It’s a fun way to learn words naturally, while absorbing tons of English-language culture at the same time.
- Talk to people: Another way to master new vocabulary is to use the words in real English conversations. The more you repeat the word, the more fluent you’ll become at using it. By talking to native English speakers, you’ll also pick up new vocabulary from them. Now that’s a bonus!
Here are some great tips to find English speaking partners no matter where you currently live.
25 Trendy New Words in English That Native Speakers Use All the Time
1. To Chillax
If you blend (mix) the words chill (relaxed) and relax, you get the verb to chillax.
This word has become more and more common on the internet over the past couple of years, and it simply means to relax, to become calm or to take it easy.
Although people use it almost with the same meaning as to relax, I find chillax has more of a sarcastic meaning, as in “wow, calm down, this isn’t so serious, you’re overreacting.”
No matter the meaning it can have for different people, remember that this word is used in slang, so don’t go telling your boss or your teacher to chillax!
Hey man, just chillax! It’s just a horror movie, not the end of the world!
Whatevs is an informal word that means whatever.
I’ve normally seen it used in sentences in which the speaker wants to express irony and show they don’t care about what’s happening or being said.
You’ll normally see whatevs as a standalone interjection or at the end of sentences:
“I don’t love you anymore.”
She didn’t give me the lipstick back, but whatevs.
Freegans and freeganism have been popular for years, but it’s only recently that we’ve gotten a word to describe who and what they are.
Simply put, a freegan is a person who tries to buy a little as possible, uses discarded things and/or (especially) food, and recycles everything they can. They’re environmentally conscious and friendly, and they do their best to reduce waste.
Although this is a positive thing for the Earth, some people take it to the extreme. It’s because of this that the words freegan and freeganism are normally surrounded by negative connotations (associations, suggestions).
He became a freegan five years ago and hasn’t bought food ever since.
This word is a mix of the word hell and the suffix -cious, which is quite common in English (delicious, conscious, audacious, tenacious, etc.).
Hellacious can have different meanings, but it is normally used as an adjective meaning astonishing, remarkable or very difficult.
This word is obviously slang, so use it only in the appropriate contexts!
He got a hellacious amount of hate from his last post.
They got a hellacious time trying to leave the country in one piece.
Put together the words awesome and sauce and you will get awesomesauce, which basically has the same meaning as awesome with a pinch of even more awesomeness.
This slang word can be used in any informal situation, and it works like a normal adjective:
I’m reading an awesomesauce book about the influence of slang words in the English language. How am I doing?
Have you ever heard someone say something so embarrassing you even felt sorry for them?
Have you been present in a situation where someone was acting so awkwardly (strangely, embarrassingly, gracelessly) that you wished you were not there?
If so, then you were cringing big time!
To cringe means to feel embarrassed and ashamed about what someone is doing or saying. You can even cringe at yourself, but let’s be honest here, we normally cringe at other people.
His mum was dancing with his best friend and he couldn’t help but cringe.
I cringe every time I read her lovey-dovey comments.
In more recent times, you can even use cringe instead of the adjective cringy to describe something that makes you cringe:
That outfit is so cringe.
7. Stan / To Stan
Stan can be used as a noun to describe a person and as a verb to describe an action.
A stan is a person who idolizes, loves to the point of obsession or is an overzealous (very devoted and loyal) celebrity fan.
To stan means to idolize, love obsessively or be an overzealous fan of a celebrity.
The slang word comes from the 2000 Eminem song titled “Stan,” which is about an obsessive fan whose love for a celebrity… well, let’s just say that it doesn’t end well.
Recently, this word has become much more common, and it can now be used in any context or situation where you want to say you love someone or something.
OMG (Oh My God)! I stan those clothes, Jenni!
I stan Katy. She’s my role model.
Sometimes, you might even see someone (usually online) say “we stan,” showing collective support (that is, support from everyone in the community).
This word is wonderful in a terrible sort of way. You could even say it makes you cringe.
Sober-curious can be used to describe a person who questions their drinking habits or wants to try to change them because of health or mental reasons.
I’ve only seen it used in very specific contexts and always related to drinking habits and alcoholism, so hopefully, you won’t have to use it very often.
He’s sober-curious and wants to try to not drink for one week.
B-day is just an informal shortened version of the word birthday. You can see it written on social media quite a lot, especially when wishing someone a happy birthday:
Happy b-day, John! Hope you have an awesome one!
The way to pronounce this word is BEE-dey.
A beardo is a person with a beard. Simple.
However, as often happens with other words like weirdo (an odd or eccentric person) it can have a pejorative (negative and unkind) meaning, especially if you put those two words together: weirdo beardo.
A weirdo beardo is a person with a beard who doesn’t have the best hygiene habits and is socially odd and awkward:
That weirdo beardo really needs a haircut!
If you love spicy food, you’ve probably heard of sriracha. It’s a Thai-inspired sauce made from a blend of hot chili peppers, garlic and spices that’s commonly used in cooking or as a dipping sauce.
Sriracha really adds a kick to your hamburger, but be sure you have a glass of water nearby!
The meaning of the word ghost (when used as a noun) that most of us are familiar with is the spirit of a dead person, like the kind we often see appearing and disappearing in movies. Now the word ghost has a new, informal meaning that has to do with disappearing.
Used as a verb, to ghost means to suddenly cut off contact completely with someone (usually a romantic partner) by not answering their phone calls and text messages.
You’ll often hear it used in the past tense (ghosted)… since you don’t know you’ve been ghosted until it’s too late!
I haven’t heard from her in more than a week. She totally ghosted me.
Try saying “extra virgin olive oil” a few times. This is a type of high-quality oil that makes Italian food so very delicious, and it’s quite a mouthful to say, isn’t it?
But no worries, now we can shorten it to EVOO with the first letters of those words. Ah there, isn’t that easier to say?
Remember to grab a bottle of EVOO on your way home. I’m making pasta tonight.
Ever notice how some men sit with their legs so wide apart in public places that they take up more than one seat?
This behavior, commonly observed on public transportation such as trains and buses and in public waiting areas, is known as manspreading (man + spreading).
Wouldn’t it be nice if people would be more considerate about manspreading during busy times of the day?
Facepalm (you’ll also see it spelled as two words: face and palm) is a new word that describes the act of covering your face with your hand when you’re in difficult or uncomfortable situations. It’s a pretty natural thing to do when we’re feeling embarrassed, frustrated or very disappointed.
He had to facepalm when his boss pointed out typos in his report after he’d checked it three times.
Here’s another new word that has to do with food: froyo. That’s right, it’s not hard to figure out that froyo is short for frozen yogurt, a cold dessert that’s similar to ice cream and a bit healthier.
On a hot day, you can call me up for a froyo any time.
Have you ever been hangry? I know I have. Hangry (hungry + angry) is when you’re in a bad mood and feeling frustrated because you need to eat right now.
I haven’t eaten anything since breakfast. I’m hangry and you’re not going to like me very much.
You can see a great example of how English speakers use the word hangry in this comedy video on FluentU.
Sign up for a free FluentU trial to watch with all the learning features and explore the rest of the video library.
Remember the time you posed for that perfect photo (or so you thought!) only to find that someone spoiled it by appearing in view when the photo was taken?
That’s a photobomb. The unintended person is a photobomber. They could be either a random stranger just walking by, or a prankster deliberately photobombing you.
You wouldn’t believe how hard it was to avoid photobombs when we were taking pictures at the beach.
19. Binge Watch
To binge watch is to watch many episodes of a TV series one after another without stopping. The word binge by itself means to overdo something.
I spent the whole weekend binge watching the TV series “Billions” with my roommate.
Every end of the year, we take time out to plan our goals for the new year. What can we do? Eat healthier? Work out more? Get more fit? Yes, but we need inspiration!
So we look around and, yes, we have a new word for that.
Fitspiration (fitness + inspiration) refers to the people, pictures and social media posts that inspire us to keep pushing ourselves and staying committed to our fitness goals.
I was pretty impressed that my co-worker had stuck a picture of Chris Hemsworth on his office wall for fitspiration.
Similar to manspreading, the word mansplain (man + explain) refers to how some men explain things to a woman in a condescending (superior-seeming) way that sounds like he’s either better than her or he knows more than her.
Whenever he starts mansplaining, all the women in the room roll their eyes and stop paying attention.
Those who don’t fancy camping in the outdoors with no proper facilities like toilets, etc. will be happy to know that there’s now a thing called glamping.
Glamping (glamorous + camping) refers to camping that comes with all of the modern facilities that you can think of like nice bathrooms, etc.
No, I won’t go camping with you. But if it’s glamping, I’m in.
Have you ever given someone a disapproving look with sideways glances of your eyes? This is called giving someone the side-eye to show you’re annoyed and don’t approve of them or their behavior.
I had good reason to give him the side-eye. He just kept yawning in front of me with his mouth open.
24. Fast Fashion
In the ever-changing world of fashion, the term fast fashion refers to the concept of big-name designers and manufacturers such as H&M, Esprit and Levi’s introducing the latest fashion trends to stores at affordable prices.
It seems she’s on a tight budget and can’t afford anything but fast fashion.
Ever taken vacation days from work and have nowhere to go? Well, if you have no travel plans, then spend your vacation at home and have a staycation (stay + vacation).
I go see the world every chance I get. So everyone was surprised that I’m having a staycation this holiday.
So there you go, a list of exciting new words in English for you to start using today. Challenge yourself to master them all as quickly as possible. Remember, practice makes perfect. Happy practicing!
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