A college campus is the ideal place to stay up-to-date with popular fashion, slang terms and social media trends. The young adults of Generation Z are currently at the forefront of content creation. These teens and twenty-somethings are now the ones deciding what words will be incorporated into movie scripts five years too late and make children of the future cringe in response to their parents feeble attempts to remain hip. As someone who uses slang conversationally with other Gen Z members, I will compile a list of which parts of my vocabulary are sure to NOT stand the test of time.

Let’s start with the obvious. “Slay” – (v.) to do something extremely well. For example, “Grace is going to slay her biology exam today and get an A.” My friends and I use “slay” so much we debated giving up saying it for Lent this year.

Next, I introduce “Mother”(adj.) a put together, nurturing person who would bake you cookies and give you the best advice. Ex. “Rihanna’s Super Bowl Halftime show was fantastic, she was so mother.” 

Finally we have “Rizz” – (n.) one’s knack for flirtation also can be used as a verb in reference to flirting. Ex. “Steve said to Joe, ‘That guy just got that girl’s Snapchat, he’s got mad rizz.’”

Now onto fashion trends, starting with the fall favorite shoe, the Boston Birkenstock. This old classic has been revived this past fall and winter season. The slip-on clog is, as Grace Lombardi ‘25 says, “Amish-chic, but in a cute way.” They may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but they are the best practical unisex shoe for people both young and old. 

Baggu bags are the new it-bag. These nylon crescent bags come in an endless assortment of colors and patterns. They are practical and come in a wide range of sizes. Baggu also offers more simple reusable bags the brand claims “isn’t just for the grocery store.” Baggu targets an audience of young consumers, which is presented in their marketing style. The @baggu Instagram page is filled with vibrant colors and patterns spotlighting models with the bags. 

The last fashion trend is nothing new, I am going to call it the “college girl uniform”. I am sure most readers can already envision what this looks like. When going out to parties girls will oftentimes text their friends and ask “What are you wearing tonight?” 

The response, nine times out of ten, is “jeans and a cute top.” On a Friday night, it is certain that if you wait in the quad and watch, you will see at least three groups of girls in some variation of this aforementioned outfit. I do not claim to be exempt from this trend. It is a staple for a reason. Bottomline: it is comfortable and cheap. A girl can have one or two pairs of her favorite jeans and pick her favorite little tops (most likely from Amazon) and be set for a semester of nights out!

Now here is the question: Do I think these are just fads or are they here to stay? 

I stand by the fact that they are trends, and that is okay! Without a certain style of speech or clothes reaching a peak, nothing would have the opportunity to be vintage. Thinking of how 70s fashion and then 90s trends circled back to the 2010s; those were all out of style and uncool at some point in time. The trend cycle is ever-turning, that is a fact. So use the “cringey” lingo while it’s popular and wear the (as Grace says) ugly shoes while you can. One day, it may make you cool again.

About The Author

Class of 2025

Christina Silvestri is an English Major with minors in Editing & Publishing and Italian Language & Literature.

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