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What Does “IYKYK” Mean? Hashtag and Internet Slang Explained

What does “IYKYK” mean? Does it mean something in appropriate? Should it get used in a business setting? Does it mean something funny? When a person texts the acronym “IYKYK” or when you see it on social media posts, it can be confusing to understand what it means.

Learn what “IYKYK” stands for in this short guide…

“IYKYK” meaning and definition

“IYKYK” stands for “If You Know, You Know.” It is an internet slang term and acronym used to describe a situation where others may not have inside knowledge. Similar to how someone would describe an inside joke. Typically, the phrase is used to give envy or jealousy to others.

It is most commonly used in social media posts rather than in text messages. Because of the intention of the acronym is to create jealousy or envy, it would be more common for the acronym to get used in a group chat rather than a private conversation between two friends.

It’s typically a reference to something. Or a scenario. Used to reference a situation that either happened or is happening. Which makes it perfect to use on social media.

IYKYK getting used in a text message.


The “IYKYK” acronym is typically in ALL CAPS rather than all lowercase. Although, all lowercase is correct usage, too.

Correct: IYKYK

Correct: iykyk

Incorrect: IYKyk

Incorrect: Iykyk


When someone uses the acronym, it is intended to create envy. For example, someone might say, “You will have copious amounts of envy when you realize you get champagne on this private jet. #IYKYK.”

In this example, “IYKYK” means the person is sharing a secret that not everyone will understand.


Social media: Snapchat, Instagram (Instagram story or post), Facebook, and Twitter.

Text message: Private messages between two people or a group chat.

History of “IYKYK”

Urban Dictionary dates the “IYKYK” acronym back to 2016. While Google Trends shows that the acronym has gained in popularity over the years. The term peaked its highest usage most recently in June of 2022. It could get associated with the use of social media increasing and the way that social media tends to create envy between friends and groups of people.

American rapper Pusha T’s song, “If You Know You Know” intends to describe the exact feeling others should have when they hear or see the acronym.

Typically, videos surface of someone doing something “elite” or exclusive. And those videos getting shared on social media with the hashtag, “#IYKYK.”

IYKYK getting used in a text message.

Examples of “IYKYK” getting used

Here are examples where “IYKYK” is getting used:

Text message example

Friend 1: “Oh my god, last night was so amazing. IYKYK!”

Friend 2: “Oh thanks. Now I feel like I missed something really special!”

In this example, the first friend is talking about something that happened last night. And is trying to give their friend “FOMO” or fear of missing out on an event.

Social media post example

Video post shared on a public platform (Snapchat, Instagram, or TikTok), either on a private feed or public feed. Video of a person in a night club.

Caption: “#IYKYK! How to get into the VIP lounge!”

This example is all about context of the video or picture. It uses the caption to explain that something exclusive is happening and that the person is part of a select group of people who are knowledgeable about the situation.

IYKYK getting used in a text message.

Similar acronyms

Other similar acronyms to “IYKYK”:

JIC: Which stands for, “Just in case.” This is commonly used as point of references to situations where someone doesn’t know something and the person is using the acronym as a type of showboating.


  1. Definition of IYKYK | New Word Suggestion – Collins Dictionary
  2. iykyk – Urban Dictionary
  3. What does IYKYK mean? Internet slang term explained
  4. What Does IYKYK Mean? – Cyber Definitions
  5. What does IYKYK stand for? – Abbreviations.com
  6. Appendix:Glossary of textspeak – Wiktionary

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About the author

Dalia Y.: Dalia is an English Major and linguistics expert with an additional degree in Psychology. Dalia has featured articles on Forbes, Inc, Fast Company, Grammarly, and many more. She covers English, ESL, and all things grammar on GrammarBrain.

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