Dating Terms and Trends You Need to Know About

The world of dating is wonderful, chaotic and unpredictable all at the same time. We look at several dating terms that you need to know about.

"Leads to clearing to forget the awful drinks and sex."

New dating terms and trends are constantly being created to fit with the ever-expanding world of relationships.

Unfortunately, everyone does not experience the idealistic love story that is portrayed in novels and films.

Instead, we are left to face the brutal reality of heartbreak, cheating and moving on from the past.

Even still, some of us do not make it past the flirty stage of a potential relationship.

We explore the numerous dating terms and trends that everyone needs to know about.


This behaviour can be treated as avoidance and ‘stringing along’ if looked at carefully in the dating world.

It’s when someone is ready to date you but they keep on rescheduling or are not in touch for a long time after a date.

The main reason being they want to keep their options open and not commit. Hence, treating the other person inconsistently, like an ‘on/off’ switch.


This dating term is one that must have been experienced by everyone at a certain point in their life.

It is when two people are dating and appear to be a couple. However, one person reveals that they are not looking to label their relationship.

This is because they are not ready to commit, despite outwardly acting differently.


This trend alludes to the notion of leaving ‘breadcrumbs’ of interest behind without the outcome of a date or relationship.

The random display of affection through messages or gestures make the receiver believe that the other is interested in pursuing a relationship.

Despite this, you are left with meaningless signs that to do lead to anything promising.


Caspering is probably one of the nicest dating terms even though it does not result in a date.

This trend relates to the notion of ghosting (see below) but you offer an explanation beforehand so the person is not left oblivious to what went wrong.

Caspering is certainly one of the more favourable trends as it is an act of common decency.


Dating Terms and Trends You Need to Know About - checking

Catfishing is certainly a warning to be careful online. This dating term refers to someone who uses a fake identity to attain dates online.

This is easy to do with the extensive use of dating apps and social media.

Be cautious with who you meet online before someone who looks different turns up to the date.


This is when an ex gets back in touch with you or you get in touch with an ex and ask for a favour.

Favours include charitable requests such as asking for a donation or getting you to like their social media profile.


Clearing is common to occur in January. The miserable weather, dreary atmosphere and seasonal departure result in meaningless hook-ups, cuddles and kisses.

Once the festive season has passed, you regret that one night stand with an ex or the person you do not fancy.

The idea of not wanting to be single and desiring physical touch is what leads to clearing to forget the awful drinks and sex.


This dating trend is a combination of gaslighting (psychological manipulation) and chasing social media influence known as clout.

Clout refers to taking part in influence online like YouTube, Instagram, Twitter and so on.

One person in the relationship deliberately do something to either upset, anger or make their partner look stupid.

This act will be recorded without the person’s knowledge and shared online to garner likes and views.


Cockfishing known as catcocking is an explicit dating trend. It involves the male sending pictures of their penis to another.

These penis images are editing using a photo editing app to make it look larger than it is.

It is important to note; the recipient may not necessarily want to see such pictures.

Cuffing Season

Dating Terms and Trends You Need to Know About - cuffing

This trend relates to the colder seasons; autumn and winter. It is during this time that an individual has the desire to be coupled up.

Unfortunately, these relationships do not make it past the cold months and usually end as soon as springtime arrives.


This term refers to a ‘backup plan’ when it comes to dating.

It’s when you are dating a few ‘cushions’ (other prospects) in case your current relationship ends and you need someone else to ‘cushion’ the fall on the rebound.


Firedooring is the dating term used to describe a one-sided relationship. This means that you are always waiting for the other to call or text.

When you make the effort to contact them, they disregard your affection.


Picture a fisherman using bait to reel in fishes and then picking out the best one and discrediting the others. This is exactly what the term dating term fishing connotes to.

An individual will send flirty messages and advances to several people to see who would be interested in hooking up.

Once they have received numerous responses, they take their pick from the batch while ignoring the others.

There is no doubt the others are left feeling a little hurt and somewhat dejected.


Do you enjoy the excitement of the beginning of a relationship? Yet, do you fear the commitment associated with one?

Then you are a flashplanner.

You are someone who enjoys the buzz of newfound romance but quiver at the idea of meeting their parents or making it Insta-official.

There is no doubt you have commitment-phobia and are certainly not looking to settle down with ‘the one’.



Think of the weather when it comes to this dating trend. Someone enters your life when the day is bright and sunny.

However, they vanish just as quick when things become a little chillier.

It seems they clearly did not come prepared with their brolly so they are surely not worth the time or effort.


Have you ever tried to make your ex or crush notice you? Did you post a video, picture or selfie online for them to see?

If yes, then you are gatsbying. This is because you purposefully posted that picture for them to see hoping it would prompt them to contact you.


This dating trend is truly awful and can leave the individual feeling hurt.

It is when all communication is cut off without providing an explanation. One moment they are there and the next they have seemingly vanished.

All you are left with is your WhatsApp conversations and memories.


This dating trend is named after the American singer, Ariana Grande.

Most breakups are never easy and a lot of bitterness is left behind. But it does not have to be this way.

Grande-ing refers to being grateful as opposed to resentful for your exes. Just like Ariana Grande sang in her hit song ‘Thank you, Next.’


Dating Terms and Trends You Need to Know About - hat

Everyone has a particular accessory they enjoy wearing because they believe it makes them look better.

This one may sound a little obscure but hatfishing is when the person posts numerous pictures of themselves wearing hats.


Kittenfishing is when you purposefully use images of yourself that have been deceptively editing to alter your appearance.

These can be old images that have been edited to exaggerate your height, age, interest or accomplishments.

The idea of being true to yourself is thrown out of the window.


This dating term is used to describe someone who showers you with affection, gifts and promises of a fruitful future together.

This can be seen as way of masquerading their faults that they are clearly trying to suppress.

Unfortunately, in extreme instances, this could be the basis of an abusive relationship.


Microcheating refers to the notion of cheating without partaking in physical acts.

This relates to sexting, emotional cheating and confiding in someone who is not your partner.

Microcheating could also be the stepping stone to physically cheating on your partner.


Dating Terms and Trends You Need to Know About - mountain

Everyone is familiar with the idea of pushing out of your league.

This means trying to be in a relationship with someone who is deemed more physically attractive than the other.


Obligaswiping is the continuing trend of swiping right on dating apps and sending flirty messages with no intention of meeting up for a date.

This act is usually done to convince yourself that you are doing something to put yourself out there rather than sitting idle.


It is always hard to completely cut ties with your ex after a breakup. Orbiting is when you seemingly stalk their Instagram or tweets and like their posts.

This is done to stay in their ‘orbit’ usually as a way of dealing with the breakup.


There is nothing worse than moving on from a breakup and then being dragged back to being remembered of their existence.

Paperclipping is when the person erratically re-enters your life to prevent you from moving on.


Dating Terms and Trends You Need to Know About - message

Preating is also known as pre-cheating is when someone makes it evident that they are open to cheating on their partner.

This is done by sending flirty text messages or getting close to a crush.


The ideal perception of someone showing romantic interest is that it will usually be reciprocated.

However, prowling is when an individual struggle to show romantic interest, thus hindering emotional advancement between the pair.


Whenever you send a text message you expect a reply. Yet when the deliver sign changes to the read sign and no response is received your blood begins to boil.

Essentially, you have been completely ignored and the person has disregarded your feelings.


We all know Christmas is a time of joy as well as creating a hole in your pocket. The level of expenses rises through the roof.

Scroogeing is when someone gets dumped just before Christmas so they do not have to buy them a present.


Dating Terms and Trends You Need to Know About - friends

This dating trend is certainly misleading. It is when someone deliberately uploads a picture of themselves with a more attractive friend.

This cunning act is done to trick the person into thinking that they are talking to the more attractive friends.

Since it will also be impolite to clarify the assumptions are not initially cleared.


Shaveducking is a rather hilarious notion. This trend relates to whether you are attracted to the person for their looks or just their facial hair.


Sometimes it is nice to be treated to a meal without always having to pay.

Sneating is when an individual takes this concept too far and agrees to go on numerous dates only for a free meal.

Be careful of who you choose to date. Make sure they are interested in you rather than the food you offer to pay for.


Once again, this dating term relates to the colder months. Over the festive period, you are treated like a princess and enjoy Christmas with your significant other.

As soon as January is upon us, you are brutally dumped. The idea of a snow globe alludes to the idea of everything being wonderful inside the globe.

However, when the new year begins your world crashes into a million pieces like a snow globe being thrown on the floor.


Dating Terms and Trends You Need to Know About - privacy

Everyone enjoys their privacy but sometimes this can be taken too far.

Stashing relates to hiding your relationship from friends, family and social media.

How much you choose to reveal about your relationship is up to the couple; however, keeping it in the dark may be a cause for concern.


As we discussed above, ghosting is when one completely disappears without an explanation.

Submarineing is when someone ghosts you but suddenly returns and behaves as though nothing has happened.


Valentine’s Day is the official day to celebrate your love and commitment to your significant other.

Everywhere you go, the colour red, hearts, chocolates and flowers are displayed in the windows.

This dating term is used to describe someone who reappears just before Valentine’s Day out of loneliness and worry.


The instance rush of admiration you felt completely vanishes as you do a u-turn.

It is apparently easy to feel infatuated with someone without giving it a second thought.

You-turning is when you suddenly change your mind, for some unknown reason, and decide to call it quits.


Zombieing transcends the notion of ghosting and submarineing. This dating term differs from submarineing because even zombies acknowledge their distance.

This extensive list of dating terms and trends highlights how the world of dating is nothing short of a battlefield. So, be on the lookout for any red flags that could potentially correspond with these terms and save yourself the heartache.


Ayesha is an English graduate with an aesthetic eye. Her fascination lies in sports, fashion and beauty. Also, she does not shy away from controversial subjects. Her motto is: “no two days are the same, that is what makes life worth living.”

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