With nightclubs open, festivals raging on, and travel restrictions disappearing, it seems COVID-19 has finally loosened its grip on our social lives. The ground is set for those seeking the ultimate hot girl summer in 2022, but is anyone else feeling the pressure to live up to this summer of freedom?
The phrase “hot girl summer” was first coined by American rapper Megan Thee Stallion in 2019 with her song Hot Girl Summer ft. Nicki Minaj. For many of us, the term has now become an everyday part of our vocabulary as well as a trusty Instagram caption for those warmer months.
There is no finite definition of hot girl summer but as Meg puts it: “it’s just basically about women – and men – just being unapologetically them, just having a good-ass time, hyping up your friends, doing you, not giving a damn about what nobody got to say about it.”
Sounds awesome right, a movement centred on feminism, self-love, and confidence?
Unfortunately, many have focused on the physical dimension of “hotness” and hot girl summer has become intrinsically linked to weight loss, the desire to gain a “summer body”, and the need to overhaul your wardrobe. Open your phone and prepare to be bombarded with ads convincing you that you NEED these bikinis for hot girl summer, and you MUST HAVE this workout app if you want to live your best life. Every day we are conditioned to believe that our idealistic summer is only attainable if we fit into society’s stereotype of a conventional “hot” girl.
Hold on, let me take you back to Meg’s definition – hot girl summer is about being unapologetically YOU!
Hot girl summer is not supposed to be about physically changing yourself, it’s all about mindset and self-confidence. Trust me, I know how tempting it is to open social media and compare yourself to others, but you don’t need to break the bank by buying new clothes or break your back with an extreme workout at the gym. Whether you are rocking some baggy joggers or slaying in that tight skirt, with the right mindset you can be the hottest girl in the room.
Hot girl summer has also become defined by the notion of releasing your inner hoe and sending a big f**k you to the patriarchy. It’s about dating who you want, kissing who you want, having a one-night stand if you want, and not caring about what anyone else thinks.
Girls in relationships please don’t stop reading here! So often talk of hot girl summer excludes those who are coupled up, the pressure to abandon traditional dating norms even driving some girls to end their relationship so they don’t “miss out”.
I’m here to tell you that being in a happy relationship doesn’t mean you can’t have an empowering summer and doesn’t mean you can’t be a “hot” girl. Just look at the guru Meg herself who started dating rapper Pardison Fontaine in 2021 and tweeted “Hot girl summer… but my man coming to pick me up after 😂”.
Being in a relationship will only add to your summer of fun, but why not take time to explore your independence too. Seek out your own adventures, try new things, and create some crazy memories to spill to your partner at the end of the day.
Wildness and spontaneity are often linked to hot girl summer and for Meg: “You definitely have to be the life of the party, and y’know, just a bad b****”.
Hello to all of my introvert readers, don’t worry I see you trembling! If you are anything like me, summer can be a stressful time. With the pressure to go out and dance till morning, sometimes all I want to do is curl up and watch some Netflix with my Phish Food Ben and Jerry’s and my comfiest hoodie.
Honestly, this is not something to feel bad about and (forgive me!) I’m going to have to disagree with Meg herself on this one. Hot girl summer does not have to be all about partying and wild nights, self-care can be even hotter.
Everyone’s version of a hot girl summer is going to be different, and that’s okay. It’s been a stressful year so take some time to relax. Read that book gathering dust on your shelf or go for a hot girl walk with some strutable tunes on full blast. Self-care does not have to be all about face masks, candles, and avocado toast though. If you want a day snuggled up in bed, do it guilt-free.
As Meg says, hot girl summer is about “doing you” so don’t force yourself to live a summer that will make you uncomfortable or anxious. It’s great to push yourself out of your comfort zone but hot girl summer can be just as much about taking some downtime.
So next time you begin to stress just remember that there are no set rules to follow, hot girl summer can be whatever you want it to be. As long as you are feeling good and owning it then you are ready to embark on this summer to end all summers.
Feature Image Credit: Vice.com