That’s so cheugy.
#Cheugy has over half a million views on TikTok. But what does it mean? The up and coming phrase describes your hometown frenemy, extended family members or maybe even you, depending on what you’re into.
According to Urban Dictionary, “cheugy” is defined as the opposite of trendy. The phrase can be applied to “fashion, habits on social media, usage of slang” and beyond.
Hal on TikTok explained that cheugy points to the “millennial, girl boss energy” many can’t seem to put into words. Cheugy is just old enough to be outdated; it’s not vintage or nostalgic. Cheugy also isn’t interesting enough to be tacky outright. It’s not inherently ugly; it’s basic in a way that is void of personality or individualistic style.
Cheugy is not synonymous with cheap. While the market for cheugy products seems most saturated at stores like Target or TJMaxx, luxury fashion or lifestyle fads are often the cheugiest, influencing affordable brands to follow suit.
The cheugy demographic is predominantly white, with eyes again on the middle-class looking for influence from those who are wealthy. Cheugy aesthetics and habits are frequently displayed in sororities, fraternities and social media influencer marketing, where men and women, while beautiful, blend in to a point of sameness in their appearance and actions. Cheuginess is overall less about specific products or apparel one buys and more to do with someone’s personal flair and their touch with relevant trends and culture.
The Instagram account Cheug Life offers almost daily examples of cheugery, as well as “famous cheugs,” reaffirming that so-called trendsetters aren’t as cutting edge as they would like to believe.
Takeaway: it’s normal to be a little cheugy. If you’re a little behind on trends, it’s no big deal. I break out my Uggs every winter and there’s a Rae Dunn mug in my cupboard. Not everything is about being on trend. Women in particular get a lot of unwarranted hate for being basic or liking stereotypically feminine things. Rather than perpetuate that sexism, cheugy helps define a style that is inclusive of all genders, and extends to phrases, trends and entertainment. It’s all in good fun.
Cheugy may also appear different regionally. Depending on where you live, how old you are and who is in your social circle, your view of cheugy will be what you decide. In short, you know cheugy when you see it.