Coupling Up Is Taking Over, So What Happened To Hot Girl Summer?

From Love Island (where the whole point is to couple up, and stay coupled up), to the many, many celeb PDAs, it appears that we're facing an early cuffing season. But what happened to the no-strings freedom of a Hot Girl Summer?

Phoebe Dynevor, Pete Davidson

by Victoria Gill |
Updated on

The Instagram chatter around Hot Girl Summer is something we’ve heard a lot about since Megan Thee Stallion coined the phrase in 2019. She officially trademarked ‘Hot Girl summer in 2019, but this phrase has been given wings more recently, in a world where we’ve been locked down for most of the past year and people are ready for quick flings, low commitment and a break from a routine.

However, this summer as post-lockdown approaches, before we’ve even had a chance to fully embrace everything that Hot Girl Summer even means, rather than a flurry of hook ups and speed dates, it appears that the Summer of Love has taken over instead – particularly in the world of celebrity, where photos of the loved-up likes of Ben Affleck and JLo, Phoebe Dynevor and Pete Davidson, Zendaya and Tom Holland and Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Barker are flooding the grid.

Then there’s Love Island, the very point of which is to get coupled up and stay coupled up. We are reminded of the chase, the getting to ‘know someone’ and the monotonous first date questions and everything in between.

The relationship between Kaz Kamwi and Toby Aromolaran perfectly illustrates the widespread commitment to love – not fun - this summer. During a chat between the pair on Sunday night’s show, the tone was serious, not flirty. Toby declared to Kaz: ‘I am not sure about my own feelings and, therefore, I do not want to hurt your feelings’. We respect the transparency but where’s the spontaneity?

This also positions Toby very much in the driving seat, as Kaz is forced to wait around for him to admit his feelings. Feeling stuff out, having fun and kissing people are key components of Hot Girl Summer and Kaz deserves the chance to have hers (plus, I wonder if we’ll see a more spontaneous Toby once Casa Amor opens its doors…).

However, as lockdown actually approaches its end and reality hits home, is HGS what we really want? Or was it just the fantasy of the freedom to experiment which appealed? Maybe we are all looking for something a little deeper than Hot Girl Summer after all?

Take Benniferaka Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez whose ‘boomerang’ romance has seen them pick up their failed romance from 2004 and put it on turbo mode in the last few months.

This week we saw Maya Jama and her rumoured boyfriend Ben Simmons going public declaring their love at Wimbledon. This is the first time we have seen Maya publicly with anyone since her break-up from Stormzy in 2019. Ben Simmons, 24, has previously dated models such as Kendal Jenner in 2018-2019. After spending two weeks in the US together in May, it looks like they are finally ready to go public and we are here for it.

Another relatively new pairing, Phoebe Dynevor and Pete Davidson, also made their first public appearance at Wimbledon over the weekend. Phoebe Dynevor looked happier than ever as she openly kissed the SNL comedian and made hordes of fans jealous in the meantime.

Whether you’re still on track for the Hottest Girl Summer of your life, or you’re opting for an early cuffing season, there’s no judgement here: whoever said they were mutually exclusive anyway?

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