What Is Rizz—And Do You Have It? The 101 Behind the TikTok Dating Term

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What Is Rizz
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Jamie Cuccinelli the knot writer and wedding expert
Jamie Cuccinelli
Jamie Cuccinelli the knot writer and wedding expert
Jamie Cuccinelli
Senior Editor, Sex & Relationships
  • Jamie is a Senior Editor for The Knot where she oversees all sex and relationship editorial content.
  • Before joining The Knot Worldwide, she worked with an array of digital publications that include Brides, The Zoe Report, Bustle and MyDomaine.
  • Jamie graduated with a degree in English and Media, Culture & Communications from New York University.
Updated Jul 31, 2023

With new relationship-related terms like beige flags and DINK trending across dating apps and TikTok, dating in 2023 should come with its own dictionary. One of these slang terms, rizz, has been having a major moment, making the rounds with Gen-Z and popping up on "For You" pages everywhere. But what is rizz, exactly? Well, settle in: Gen-Z dating terms 101 is in session.

If you're unfamiliar with rizz's meaning, you're not alone. Since this relatively new dating term originated on social media and gained popularity on TikTok, it's understandable if it hasn't made its way into every corner of the Internet or into your daily vernacular just yet. But that's where we come in: Below, learn what is rizz (and see if you have it yourself!).

In this article:

Okay, So What Is Rizz?

To put it simply: Rizz is short for charisma. (You can totally hear it now right?) Essentially, rizz refers to how successful one is at attracting and/or flirting with potential partners—particularly in the context of dating apps or "spitting game" IRL.

"[It] means you've got game," Bill Nye the Science Guy (yes, the very one) is told in one particular TikTok. The definition has also expanded to encompass charismatic details on dating profiles, as well as one's general "vibe." We know it sounds a bit vague, but think of it as that special thing that makes you want to talk to someone—even if they haven't spoken themselves yet.

Related terms have taken off, too. (If rizz is the original, think of them as spin-offs.) These include the following:

What Is W Rizz:

Let's break it down! If you earned yourself a "W," that's a win, right? SoW rizz refers to a rizz win. Think: landing a successful pick-up line on Tinder.

"W means win, and rizz is the game," explains TikToker Shumi Brody to their audience. "So it's someone winning the game."

What Is L Rizz:

You know this one, now: It's just the opposite. L rizz refers to a rizz loss. ("Taking an 'L.'")

What Is 0 Rizz:

Another way to measure one's rizz, this term is used if someone struggles with attracting romantic partners.

What Is Unspoken Rizz:

If someone has unspoken rizz, they don't have to verbally flirt to attract a potential partner. They may simply carry themselves with a quiet confidence, have ultra-intriguing photos on their dating profiles or have mastered the art of flirting with their eyes from across a crowded bar.

What Is a Rizz God:

A rizz god is someone who has charisma practically radiating from their pores. One of the most infamous rizz gods according to the Internet? Pete Davidson. #IYKYK

To summarize, rizz's meaning isn't anything unheard of before, or a completely new concept. It refers to charm, charisma and one's flirtatious prowess.

Where Did Rizz Come From?

Rizz first reportedly took off after Twitch streamer and Youtuber Kai Cenat began to use the word publicly, according to Complex.

"Rizz started with me and a few of my friends from back home," Cenat said during a recording of No Jumper podcast. "Rizz is when you're talking to a girl," he explained, "[And] you're so slick with your words and what you're saying, to where the girl is like, 'OK, yeah, who is this?!'... And after sh*t goes your way, you're like, 'Yeah, I rizzed her up. I've got mad rizz.'"

Since then, the term grew in popularity on TikTok—where its definition expanded, too, as mentioned above. (It is also worth noting that while the term can and has been used by people of all genders and sexualities, its origins are heteronormative in nature.)

Cenat, however, isn't supportive of rizz's growing, broadened meaning: "Right now the trend is unspoken rizz," he noted on No Jumper, referencing the non-verbal form of the practice (often thought to be based on conventional attractiveness). "That's not really rizz," according to Cenat. "TikTok butchered that word."

Do You Have Rizz?

A popular trend on TikTok has been for users to post videos asking their followers to "rate their rizz," and a themed filter even exists that'll "measure" your rizz for laughs. But how does one actually achieve rizz, or know that they possess it?

When it comes to having rizz, the rule of thumb is to focus on getting comfortable with being yourself. Rizz is about confidence—and is there anything less sexy than someone trying to be someone they're not?

How to Get W Rizz

Read on for some rizz-boosting tips—but remember to tailor them to what makes sense for you and your personality: Once you establish confidence and security in yourself is when you'll really see those W rizz moments begin to come through!

And like all aspects of dating and relationships, consent is expected and is key. If someone is not reciprocating your rizz-inspired moves, respect their boundaries and move on.

How to Have Rizz IRL:

Looking to up your IRL rizz factor? Focus on building confidence and familiarity with small talk and playfully flirting when interest is reciprocated. The simple steps below are a great place to start.

  • Make eye contact when speaking with your partner or potential partner.
  • Examine your body language: Habits like crossing your arms across your chest or hiding your hands can make you appear standoffish or difficult to approach—the opposite of rizz!
  • When you're at a loss for what to say, ask questions. (You want to get to know this person after all!)

How to Have Rizz Over Text:

Writing a partner thoughtful, authentic texts showing that you're thinking about them is a great way to let your rizz flag fly. (Again, authenticity is key: Don't say things you don't mean.)

Try customizing the text ideas below. You can find additional text message ideas for your partner here.

  • "You're always the last thing on my mind as I drift off."
  • "Just wanted to let you know that I'm thinking of you."
  • "This isn't as good as whispering sweet nothings in your ear—but it's close!"

How to Have Rizz on Dating Apps:

Below, see some dating app pick up lines that are dripping with rizz. To add more rizz to your profile, be thoughtful about the photos you choose (well-lit, front-facing and smiling photos are oftentimes best for success), and ask matches genuine, open-ended questions. You can find more dating app pick up lines here.

  • "I just watched The Notebook last night and Ryan Gosling has nothing on you."
  • "Do you believe in love at first swipe, or should we match again?"
  • "Are you a Wi-Fi signal because I'm feeling a strong connection here?"
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