So, you’ve been noticing the word “shade” show up in your Facebook newsfeed more often these days? Here’s the definition: To verbally and or non-verbally disrespect a frienemy, friend, foe, or stranger in a witty or cold manner. Ex: “Beyonce killed the National Anthem, I can’t wait until she slays on the Super Bowl stage in two weeks. I’m sure her voice will be well rested.” SHADE.
The term “shade” was coined by LGBT community in the 1980s NYC-ballroom scene (please watch Paris Is Burning for a much needed history lesson). Since then, the phrase has relatively stayed within the community, until RuPaul brought it to the mainstream vocabulary with “RuPaul’s Drag Race” competition show.
So, for those who are new to using the word “shade”, please see below at the 4 Kinds Of Shade that you’ll encounter:
The Don’t Come For My Lover Shade
Here’s the deal: When you do the unthinkable and disrespect a (wo)man’s lover, s/he will shade the sh*t out of you any chance s/he gets. The “don’t come for my lover shade” is typically reserved for classy ladies (and gents, too!) who can’t swing a punch at the shi*-talker due to reputation, so instead refuses to partake in conversation. When forced to engage, he/she will typically respond with an eyeroll and a “I can’t believe you’re even addressing me” shake of the head. Please take note from FLOTUShader.
The Scorned Lover Shade
Then there’s the scorned ex-lover‘s shade. Scorned lovers will take to Twitter and shade with very obvious “subliminal” tweets, and then reveal an ex-lover’s short comings through song. He/She’ll leak all incriminating screenshot text messages and will absolutely make sure nudes go viral. Talk to Taylor Swift for more on scorned ex-lover shade.
(Photo Via: Wire Image)
The universal language of frienemies is shade. A frienemy will “like” the Facebook cover photo of you wearing an Emilio Pucci dress, and though you’ve stated it’s a Pucci number, they will comment “OMG! Totally love your dress, saw the same one in a WalMart window display! xx”. As a good frienemy, you’d respond: “HAHA! Did you buy it? You WOULD knockoff my look, wouldn’t you… ” #SHADE
(Photo Via: Twitter/@RuPaul)
Tacky shade is not underhanded, but blatant and mean spirited. Shade should be delivered in a cool and coy manner, while “bitch” or tacky shade makes the thrower seem more like a bully, not like a witty wordsmith. Don’t throw it or you can’t sit with us.
The Underhanded Shade
There are two types of underhanded shade: One version sees a compliment followed by a shady remark. Ex: “I love that jacket! I had that same one…back in 2004.” The shaded is thankful for the praise and rarely picks up on its undertones.
But underhanded shade does not always come packaged with a compliment. It can also be a factual statement (see: video above), delivered in a dismissive tone. Usually, this type of underhanded shade is packaged with gestures like hairflips and shrugs. Mariah Carey is the reigning queen of underhanded shade.
No go off into the world and throw shade! And do it in style.