Slang dictionary

nepo baby

[ nep-oh bey-bee ]

What is a nepo baby?

The slang term nepo baby refers to a famous person who has at least one parent (or another close family member) who is a celebrity.

The term is often used in an at least mildly negative way to imply that the person’s fame and career opportunities are mainly or solely due to their family relation. It is also sometimes used in a mostly neutral way to simply refer to a child of a famous or wealthy person (regardless of the perception of their talent or fame).

What’s a menty b? Why are TikTokers adding -ussy to everything? You might be sorry you asked, but we’re going to explain the latest slang terms.

Related words

normie, bold-faced lie, the proof is in the pudding, iykyk

Where does nepo baby come from?

dark blue text "nepo baby" on blue background

In nepo baby, the word nepo is an informal shortening of nepotism, which refers to favoritism that a person receives due to a family relation. The word baby indicates the familial relationship (in a way that can be intended to be mocking or infantilizing).

The term nepo baby has been used on social media since at least 2018.

 

The term gained widespread use and attention in December 2022 when New York magazine used the term in a cover story that profiled the famous children of Hollywood celebrities. The term then became a common subject of jokes, memes, and debate about whether it’s fair to apply the term to certain people (such as those who have attempted to downplay their family connections).

Examples of nepo baby

Starting to get real nepo baby vibes from this King Charles fella
@FridayInHalifax, December 20, 2022
Nepo baby Gwyneth Paltrow spoke about the issue on Hailey Bieber’s YouTube show earlier this year (Bieber is also a nepo baby).
Dani Di Placido, Forbes, November 2022

Who uses nepo baby?

The term nepo baby is often used in a mildly negative way to imply—sometimes jokingly—that a person’s fame or career opportunities are due solely or mostly to having a celebrity parent (or other close family members). People often debate whether the term is fair when it’s applied to a person they consider talented in their own right.

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Note

This is not meant to be a formal definition of nepo baby like most terms we define on Dictionary.com, but is rather an informal word summary that hopefully touches upon the key aspects of the meaning and usage of nepo baby that will help our users expand their word mastery.