How TikTok and Gen-Z Creators Helped ‘Rizz’ Become the Oxford Word of the Year 2023


Are you charming? Do you have nice style? Do you ask rhetorical questions in a flirtatious way that comes off smooth? If so, you may be familiar with this year’s Oxford Word of the Year ‘rizz’.

The Oxford University Press announced today that the word that best represents the mood and motivations of the last 12 months is rizz. With hundreds of millions of views on TikTok, tens of thousands of appearances in Instagram captions, and a common word in the vocabulary of popular YouTubers all year long, rizz is a term that Gen-Z social media users brought into the mainstream limelight this year.

What Is Rizz?

Rizz is a shortened version of the word “charisma”, derived from the middle syllable. Rizz is a word used to describe a state of being that people have. One has rizz. Consider it binary, as many people have had the debate “do they or do they not have rizz?”. Similar to the phrase “game” which goes back as early as the 1970’s, describing one’s ability to impress as a technique.

How Did Rizz Become Popular?

Online streamer and YouTube star Kai Cenat is known to be one of the founding fathers of the term rizz, bringing the phrase’s popularity to YouTube at the tail end of 2022 with a video sharing advice on how to have rizz in 2022. From there, Gen-Z creators on TikTok created tens of thousands of videos talking about, showing examples of, and even rating rizz. These videos were quick to amass well over a billion views. See some popular examples below:

@.in.jesus.we.trust100Rizz up pickup lines fir you 🥱 was bored and wanted to try this out♬ original sound – soundeffectpack

@thekrizzl try this with ur crush 👀🤝 #rizz #couplesgoals #whitetee #flirtgame ♬ Rizz song – ⚽️𝓔𝓱𝓼𝓪𝓷⚽️

The Vast Variations of Rizz

Derivitives of the word began spinning off of rizz, with variations like “unspoken rizz” gaining popularity. While the main definition of rizz is meant to be a act of verbal speech, TikTok users created the phrase ‘Unspoken Rizz’ which is meant to display one’s ability to have rizz so smooth that it does not require any verbal communication. These memes took the general concept of rizz to an entire new viral level.

Having unspoken rizz:

@kaylaaaaa895 Wshs rizz #wshs #unspokenrizz #fypシ #fy🅿️#OscarsAtHome ♬ UNSPOKEN RIZZ – haileyy.vsp

Those who have ‘ultimate rizz’ (spoken and unspoken) have been granted the titled of “the rizzler”:


@ctbxxx7 when ya boy is a famous tik toker #fyp #viral #rizz ♬ White Tee Sped – tezkko

Those who do have rizz have gone viral on TikTok for their ‘W Rizz’ which means that their rizz is winning.

@wasup_bbg0 smooth rizz🔥 #rizz #wrizz#fypシ゚viral #foryourpage #edit #fypシ #foryoupage #💀💀💀 #smoothrizz #smooth🔥 #🔥🔥 ♬ original sound – Im_justwastingyourtime💀 – the king of shadow boxing👑👑

And sadly those who do not have ‘W Rizz’ have the opposite, L Rizz:

@baschinn twitch:JustBaschin, YT:Baschin #fyp #foryou #foryoupage #baschin #viral #xyzcba ♬ original sound – baschin

Tom Holland Responding to His Rizz

Beyond the hype on TikTok, actor Tom Holland helped bring ‘rizz’ to a mainstream level in an interview with Buzzfeed where he says “I have no rizz whatsoever, I have limited rizz”.

@buzzfeed When Tom Holland makes rizz the Oxford Dictionary 2023 word of the year 😏 #tomholland #rizz #wordoftheyear ♬ original sound – BuzzFeed

According to the Oxford University Press, Tom Holland’s use of the word rizz skyrocketed the word into a top contender for ‘Word of The Year’.

There Are Even Ai Companies Focusing on Maximizing Rizz

During this year, companies like Rizz Ai have ranked in the leaderboards of “Product of the Day” on ProductHunt as they use machine learning models in ChatGPT to create phrases and responses “with rizz” for users to send to people they’re texting with.

There have been over 25,000,00 replies generated by Rizz Ai in their app since March, 2023.

Swifties Have Lost the Battle

As Taylor Swift was a prominent figure in this year’s string of social media moments, Swifties fought to win the word of the year. But, rizz shortlisted “swifties” in a neck-and-neck race. Following the attempt to bring “swifties” to the top, other voters also wanted phrases like ‘beige flag’, ‘situationship’, and ‘de-influencing’ to win.

A Word from Oxford Languages

Casper Grathwohl, president of Oxford Languages, shared the organization’s top pick after seeing thousands of people voting diligently on this year’s Word of the Year. “It has been incredible to see the public once again enjoying being a part of the Word of the Year selection” he stated. “Witnessing thousands of people debate and discuss language like this really highlights the power it has in ehlping us understand who we are, and process what’s happening to the word around us.”

Rizz ranks for 2023, following the phrase “goblin mode” winning 2022’s Word of the Year, described as “a type of behaviour which is unapologetically self-indulgetn, lazy, slovenly, or greedy, typically in a way that rejects social norms of expectations”.

Casper Grathwohl also said that with rizz’s mainstream popularity in shartp contrast to last year’s goblin mode, there is a significant change in mood from year to year.

“Given that last year ‘goblin mode’ resonated with so many of us after the pandemic, it’s interesting to see a contreasting word like rizz come to the forefront, perhaps speaking to a revailing mood of 2023, where more of us are opening ourselves up after a challenging few years and finding confidence in who we are” he stated.

Working with TikTok Creators to Make Your Product, Service, or Brand Popular

If you are looking to make an impact that grows beyond rizz, you are going to have to have quite the robust social media marketing plan for 2024. In order to grow your product, service, or brand across social media like users did with the phrase rizz, you can work directly with industry leading influencers on Glewee.


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