Material Girl – Meaning, Origin and Usage

Have you seen the term ‘material girl’ somewhere on a social media website like TikTok or Instagram and hope to understand this common reference? The term ‘material girl’ is a mild insult, one that refers to girls and women who might be seen as “gold diggers” by others. This post unpacks the meaning and origin of this term.


The term ‘material girl’ is a popular internet reference that is used as an insult to refer to female social media users who use their channels or profiles to show off a rich, opulent lifestyle (whether or not this is actually the case).

The term ‘material girl’ or ‘material girls’ can be used to refer to one or more people.

A reference to someone as a ‘material girl’ is a pejorative term that means they are perceived as flashy, over-the-top or fake by others.

Someone who is called a ‘material girl’ is someone who appears shallow or superficial on the surface to other people. The term might also refer to someone who floods their social media accounts with promotional or sponsored content, leading to their appearance as material or powered by monetary gain.

The term ‘material girl’ can be used to refer to anyone, and is not just exclusively used to refer to women.

The term can be used as a comment, a status, as part of a discussion or sometimes just as a hashtag that appears with others on social media.

Sometimes the term is abbreviated to ‘material gworl’, although both terms mean exactly the same when they are used.

Example Usage

“Wow, I didn’t know your grandmother was such a material girl in her thirties. I mean, just look at all those rings she pulled out of her dresser. If she sold those now, she could buy an entire house with the money.”

“I don’t know, I guess my last relationship didn’t work out because she was a material girl (and he was a guy who earned about $20k more per year.”

“Just look at the amount of gold plastered all over the walls and you’ll know that she’s kind of a material girl. I think you might need at least a three-piece suit to meet the parents.”

“Just look at the amount of jewelry your grandfather kept in his cellar. #materialgirl”


The term ‘material girl’ is likely to have originated with the release of the 1984 Madonna song by the same name. Song ‘Material Girl’ would top international music charts, and absorb the term into popular speak as a reference for any person who cared more about material wealth than most other things.

Material Girl would become the title of a second song in 2019, this time released by artist Saucy Santana. The song title is a reference to the Madonna original, and re-established the term of a ‘material girl’ as someone who cared more about money.

When the song reached social media, it would climb to new heights in 2021 when it became an increasing mention for users on TikTok.

References to the song would become a background feature in some popular TikTok videos, and the term ‘material girl’ would go up in mentions as a hashtag and comment.

Phrases Similar to Material Girl

  • Dinkleberg

Phrases Opposite to Material Girl

  • Heather

What is the Correct Saying?

  • Material Girl
  • material girl
  • Material Gworl

Ways People May Say Material Girl Incorrectly

There are several ways in which the term ‘material girl’ can be used in the wrong way, or understood in the wrong way if an internet user doesn’t know the context in which the term has been used.

‘Material Girl’ or ‘material gworl’ can be used to refer to any gender, and it is meant as a mild-insult or reference to say that someone appears to care exclusively about wealth and high-flying experiences.

The term ‘material girl’ is never abbreviated.

Acceptable Ways to Phrase Material Girl

The term ‘material girl’ can be used to refer to someone on social media who appears to use their accounts to show off, to flash material goods or to post only sponsored, paid-for content that advertises something.

‘Material girl’ can also be used to refer to anyone who appears superficial or shallow, especially through their social media accounts.

The singular or plural ‘material girls’ is considered valid.

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