Are You Approaching Dating Through 'Rizz-Colored Glasses'?

We've all heard of rose-colored glasses, a metaphor for the overly optimistic view some people have for romance or life in general. Now, there's a new take on the concept, with some inspo from Gen-Z slang: "rizz-colored glasses." For those unfamiliar with the term, "rizz" is a new addition to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, originally coined by pro streamer Kai Cenat. Rizz, which can be both a noun and a verb, essentially means to charm or romance someone through charisma and confidence.

Rizz can be attractive — haven't we all fallen for the sweet-talking, smooth-operator type at least once? It can be so magnetic that some even see their crushes through distorted "rizz-colored glasses," a concept identified by the dating app Plenty of Fish. According to a Plenty of Fish press release (via PR Newswire), the rizz-colored glasses phenomenon is on the rise among daters and is set to become a top dating trend in 2024. Among users surveyed by the app, 52% of singles say they find rizz to be an attractive trait in a potential partner. However, some daters may be sorely disappointed when they remove the rizz-colored glasses and see beyond the superficial charm and swagger.

What's wrong with falling for rizz?

A date's rizz might pull you in at first, but after the initial talking stage, you may find they lack the substance needed to keep the relationship going. According to a Plenty of Fish press release (via PR Newswire), 43% who've fallen for rizz say they later realized the other person wasn't capable of forging a deeper connection.

Even worse, charming, charismatic rizz can be characteristic of narcissists and people with narcissistic tendencies, according to PsychCentral. Similarly, a narcissistic person might use love bombing — which could be easily mistaken for innocent rizz — to win you over. "The love bombing act is how they keep people around," Lena Derhally, a licensed psychotherapist, told Oprah Daily. Eventually, they'll reveal their true colors, Derhally explained. "It's a rather abusive dynamic. The more you get involved with them, the more the dark side manifests in situations, so you'll start to get more of the devaluation. But if they lose you and it scares them, you'll get the love bombing all over again."

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.

How to see through the rizz

Though rizz can be irresistible, it isn't enough to sustain a meaningful relationship. Before being deceived by your rizz-colored glasses, it's important to recognize if your crush is really a healthy fit for you — or if they're just a toxic manipulator. A basic gut check is a good place to start. Ask yourself: How do I feel around them? Do I feel comfortable and confident, or do I feel overwhelmed by their charisma? Do I believe they're trustworthy, or does something about them seem a little off? As psychotherapist Tiffany Rowland shared with Parade, "A narcissistic person can be clever but eventually your intuition will start buzzing and you must pay attention to that feeling about the person you're dealing with."

Another step is determining if them rizzing you up is actually love bombing in disguise. Love bombing, by nature, tends to be excessive — think a fancy gift early in your relationship or PDA that borders on being inappropriate. Psychologist Dr. Alaina Tiani told Cleveland Clinic that setting boundaries around affection (such as stating you no longer want to make out in public) is one way to find out if the other person is a love bomber. "If you voice something that's made you uncomfortable and somebody takes that feedback and incorporates it and changes their behavior moving forward, they probably respect you and care about your relationship. But if they're combative, argumentative or continue to disrespect your boundaries, those are red flags."