Witty, Wacky, Wise and Wilful –The Top Words of 2020!

2020 has been a lockdowner, but it’s never too late to upgrade your lingo and flex on your quaranteam.

Every now and then, wordsmiths like ourselves come together to regale stories of the literary year gone by. Like most quirky, content agencies, we don’t shy away from the term “gatekeepers of the English language”. In fact, we wear this title with pride and satisfaction. Our love for words, the way they sound, the meanings they denote, the emotions they evoke, is what keeps us on our toes! And with an eventful year such as 2020, there’s much to ponder over in terms of culture and lexicon, vocabulary and slang. If we were to give out awards to the most trending words of 2020, the following would be our honorary attendees. 

Here’s presenting Word Hatter’s glossary of new words 2020!

(We’ve included a short definition for each, to make your reading experience that much sweeter.)

1. Climate Emergency

A situation in which urgent action is required to reduce or halt climate change and avoid potentially irreversible environmental damage resulting from it.

2. Social Bubble

A small group consisting of up to a maximum of 10 people, who are allowed to socialise as a means of easing the COVID-19 lockdown.

3. Quaranteam

This smart pairing tops the list of new words 2020.

The people you choose to live with during a COVID-19 quarantine period. 

4. Lockdowner

Yet another funny word pun that graces the category of trending words 2020.

A distressing or depressing experience during a lockdown period. 

5. Antiwoke

A term denoting that someone is the opposite of woke. Woke refers to an act of perceived awareness regarding issues of social justice and racial justice.

6. Permaculture

The development of agricultural ecosystems intended to be sustainable and self-sufficient.

7. Miraitowa

The 2020 Olympics mascot, whose personality is based on a Japanese proverb, “learn from the past and develop new ideas”.

8. Fortitude

To show great courage or strength in times of pain or adversity. 

It’s no surprise that this hopeful word graces the trending words 2020 bank.

9. Subversive

Seeking or intending to undermine the power and authority of an established system or institution.

10. Freegan

A person who rejects consumerism and seeks to help the environment by reducing waste, especially by retrieving and using discarded food and other goods.

This is one of our favourites from the new words 2020 trunk.

11. Multi-Mask

To apply more than one skin care product to the face to get a hydrating glow and younger looking skin. 

12. Hothouse

A place or a situation that encourages the rapid development of ideas, emotions and knowledge. 

13. Hellacious

A dreadful experience that is often used to describe traffic, weather, or any other chaotic moment in time. 

14. Nomophobia

Short for ‘no mobile phobia’, it is a humorous word for the fear of, or anxiety caused by, not having a working mobile phone.

15. Peoplekind

A gender-neutral alternative to “mankind” or ‘humankind, accidentally coined by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. 

16. Bottle Episode

An episode that is produced cheaply and restricted in scope to use of as few non-regular cast members, effects, and sets as possible.

17. Sober-curious

Experimenting with a period of not drinking alcohol due to mental and/or physical health reasons. 

18. The Tea

The act of gossiping or spilling gossip, where one reveals something salacious. 

19. Fit

A term of endearment or expression that conveys that a person is very attractive. 

20. Basic

Used pejoratively to describe women who are perceived to prefer mainstream products, trends, and/or music.

21. Cap

The act of lying or fibbing, used in situations of scepticism to convince someone of the legitimacy of your statement.

22. Extra

An adjective for something or someone who is trying too hard, or is over the top and dramatic.  

23. Flex

To knowingly taunt, show off and/or parade oneself around others. 

24. Goat

An acronym that stands for “the greatest of all time”, originating from American Hip Hop.

25. Lewk

A variation of a look, a signature physical trait, or a specially styled outfit. 

Lockdown fashion has taken this one to the peak of new words 2020.

26. Lowkey

Being discrete, modest, secretive or casual. Keeping things on the down low. 

27. Salty

When someone is annoyed, upset, bitter or ticked off about a very minor incident.

28. Shook

Being shocked, surprised, scared or emotionally affected by something or someone.

29. Stan

An overzealous or obsessive fan who begins to portray stalking tendencies. 

30. Buzzy

When the atmosphere tingles with curiosity, anticipation and excitement, thereby getting people talking.

Did you enjoy Word Hatter’s mixed platter of trending words 2020? While some are socio-environmentally inclined, others are simply cutesy and wild. You might have noticed that some of these terms frequent your own conversations on a day to day basis.

Can you think of more, unique to your life and circumstance? 

Write to us for a creative tête-à-tête.

We can’t wait to get wordsy!