What does SW mean on TikTok?

TikTok logo on a a phone screenUnsplash: Solen Feyissa

Thousands of people use the term ‘SW’ across TikTok, whether that’s in comments or in videos, but what does it actually mean? Here’s everything you need to know.

Video platform TikTok is only continuing to get more popular by the day, thanks to the thousands of viral creators, trends, challenges, and more that populate the app.

As with any social media platform, people on TikTok use a variety of different slang terms and acronyms to make communication simpler, with some phrases that are popular across multiple platforms, and others that have originated from TikTok.

You may have seen some creators referencing ‘SW’ or talking about being an ‘SW’ on the platform, but what does this acronym stand for, and why is it used?

Article continues after ad
TikTok logo next to a phoneUnsplash: Jeremy Bezanger / Sincerely Media
TikTok is the most popular social media platform out there right now.

SW meaning on TikTok

On TikTok, SW usually stands for either ‘sex work’ or ‘sex worker,’ depending on how it is used in a sentence.

People generally use this term to avoid being flagged by TikTok’s algorithm, which could lead to their videos being removed or their account being banned. Acronyms and other slang are becoming increasingly popular on TikTok, as it allows creators to talk about subjects that they may not otherwise be able to freely discuss.

This is often the reason that people use the term ‘accountant,’ which began as a meme in 2020, but went on to become another way that creators avoid being flagged by the algorithm when referring to their job.

Article continues after ad

If you’re struggling to understand the meaning of other trending terms on TikTok, such as POV, FYP, fake body, storytime, and more, you can check out our guide here to learn more about some of the app’s most popular terms.