Top 33 Slang For Secretly – Meaning & Usage

When it comes to keeping things on the down-low, knowing the right slang can be key. Whether you’re planning a surprise party or just trying to discreetly navigate a situation, having the right words at your disposal can make all the difference.

Join us as we unveil the top slang for secretly that will have you feeling like a master of stealth in no time. Get ready to up your covert communication game with this essential list!

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1. On the down low

This phrase means to keep something hidden or private, typically to avoid attention or judgment. It can also imply a sense of secrecy or confidentiality.

  • For example, “They’re dating, but they’re keeping it on the down low for now.”
  • A person might say, “Let’s meet up on the down low to discuss our plans.”
  • In a conversation about sensitive information, someone might say, “Keep this on the down low, but I heard a rumor about a company merger.”

2. Behind closed doors

This phrase refers to actions or discussions that happen away from public view or scrutiny. It implies a sense of privacy and confidentiality.

  • For instance, “They made their decision behind closed doors, without consulting the team.”
  • A politician might say, “We need to address this issue behind closed doors before making a public statement.”
  • In a discussion about personal matters, someone might say, “What happens behind closed doors should stay behind closed doors.”

3. Hush-hush

This term is used to describe something that is intentionally kept quiet or concealed. It suggests a need for discretion and avoiding unnecessary attention.

  • For example, “The details of the project are still hush-hush.”
  • A person might say, “I can’t tell you yet, it’s all hush-hush for now.”
  • In a conversation about a surprise party, someone might say, “Keep it hush-hush, we don’t want the birthday person to find out.”

4. Under wraps

This phrase means to keep something concealed or protected from public knowledge. It implies a sense of secrecy and control over information.

  • For instance, “The new product launch is still under wraps, but it’s generating a lot of buzz.”
  • A person might say, “I can’t reveal the details yet, it’s still under wraps.”
  • In a discussion about a confidential document, someone might say, “Make sure to keep it under wraps until the official announcement.”

5. Behind the scenes

This phrase refers to actions or processes that happen away from public view. It implies a sense of hidden work or activity.

  • For example, “The team worked hard behind the scenes to make the event a success.”
  • A person might say, “There’s a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes of a movie production.”
  • In a conversation about a public figure, someone might say, “Behind the scenes, they have a completely different personality.”

6. Privately

This term is used to describe doing something discreetly or in secret, away from the public eye.

  • For example, “Let’s meet privately to discuss the details.”
  • A person might say, “I’ll tell you privately, but don’t spread it around.”
  • In a conversation about sensitive information, someone might whisper, “This needs to be kept privately.”

7. Stealthily

This word describes doing something in a secretive or sneaky manner, without being noticed or detected.

  • For instance, “He moved stealthily through the shadows.”
  • A person might advise, “If you want to get in undetected, you need to act stealthily.”
  • In a discussion about espionage, someone might say, “Agents are trained to operate stealthily to gather intelligence.”

8. Confidentially

This term refers to sharing information in a private and confidential manner, with the understanding that it will not be disclosed to others.

  • For example, “I’ll tell you confidentially, but you must promise not to tell anyone else.”
  • A person might say, “I trust you, so I’ll share this with you confidentially.”
  • In a conversation about sensitive matters, someone might say, “This needs to be handled confidentially.”

9. Clandestinely

This word describes doing something in a secretive or concealed manner, often implying that it is not authorized or allowed.

  • For instance, “They met clandestinely in a hidden location.”
  • A person might say, “They were operating clandestinely to avoid detection.”
  • In a discussion about illegal activities, someone might say, “They were involved in clandestine operations.”

10. In secret

This term refers to doing something privately or discreetly, away from the knowledge or awareness of others.

  • For example, “They conducted their meetings in secret.”
  • A person might say, “I’ll do it in secret so no one finds out.”
  • In a conversation about hidden affairs, someone might say, “Their relationship was kept in secret.”

11. Incognito

This term refers to a state of being disguised or hidden, especially online. When someone is “incognito,” they are concealing their true identity or actions.

  • For example, a person might say, “I’m going to browse the internet incognito so no one knows what I’m looking at.”
  • In a discussion about privacy, someone might mention, “Using an incognito browser can help protect your personal information.”
  • A tech-savvy individual might advise, “If you want to stay anonymous online, use the incognito mode on your web browser.”

12. Sub rosa

This Latin phrase translates to “under the rose” and is used to indicate secrecy or confidentiality. It implies that information or actions are being kept hidden or private.

  • For instance, a person might say, “Let’s discuss this sub rosa to avoid any unnecessary attention.”
  • In a conversation about classified information, someone might mention, “Certain government operations are conducted sub rosa to protect national security.”
  • A person might warn, “Be careful who you trust with sensitive information; it’s best to keep things sub rosa.”

13. Behind the curtain

This phrase refers to something that is happening or being done in secret or without public knowledge. It suggests that there is a hidden aspect or agenda behind the scenes.

  • For example, a person might say, “There’s a lot going on behind the curtain that the public isn’t aware of.”
  • In a discussion about politics, someone might mention, “Many decisions are made behind the curtain, away from public scrutiny.”
  • A person might comment, “It’s important to look beyond what’s presented and understand what’s happening behind the curtain.”

14. Subterranean

This word is used metaphorically to describe something that is hidden or secret, similar to something that is beneath the surface or underground.

  • For instance, a person might say, “There’s a subterranean network of spies operating in the shadows.”
  • In a conversation about hidden motives, someone might mention, “His true intentions were subterranean, only revealed later.”
  • A person might explain, “The subterranean nature of the organization makes it difficult to track their activities.”

15. In the dark

This phrase refers to being uninformed or lacking knowledge about something, particularly when others are aware of it. It suggests that someone is being kept ignorant or intentionally left out of the loop.

  • For example, a person might say, “I feel like they’re keeping me in the dark about their plans.”
  • In a discussion about a surprise party, someone might mention, “We need to make sure the guest of honor is kept in the dark until the big day.”
  • A person might warn, “Don’t let yourself be kept in the dark; always seek information and stay informed.”

16. In the underground

This phrase refers to something that is happening or being done in secret or in an undercover manner. It implies that the activity is hidden from public view or knowledge.

  • For example, “They are organizing protests in the underground to avoid detection by the authorities.”
  • A spy might communicate, “We need to meet in the underground to exchange classified information.”
  • In a conversation about illegal activities, someone might say, “He operates his criminal empire in the underground.”

17. In the closet

This phrase is often used to describe someone who is concealing their true sexual orientation or gender identity. It suggests that the person is keeping their identity a secret or not openly expressing it.

  • For instance, “He’s in the closet and hasn’t come out to his family yet.”
  • A friend might ask, “Are you still in the closet, or have you told anyone about your true self?”
  • In a discussion about LGBTQ+ rights, someone might say, “Coming out of the closet is a personal journey that each individual goes through.”

18. Behind the wall

This phrase is used to describe something that is happening or taking place in a hidden or concealed manner. It implies that the activity is not easily visible or known to others.

  • For example, “There’s a secret room behind the wall where they store valuable artifacts.”
  • A person might say, “He built a hidden compartment behind the wall to hide his valuables.”
  • In a conversation about espionage, someone might mention, “They have spies operating behind the wall, gathering classified information.”

19. In the backroom

This phrase refers to something that is happening or being done in a private or secretive area, typically away from public view. It suggests that the activity is not intended to be known or observed by others.

  • For instance, “They made a deal in the backroom to avoid public scrutiny.”
  • A business owner might say, “I handle all the important negotiations in the backroom.”
  • In a discussion about politics, someone might comment, “Many decisions are made in the backroom, away from public debate.”

20. In the back alley

This phrase is often used to describe something that is happening or taking place in a hidden or obscure location, typically a narrow street or alley. It implies that the activity is not easily visible or known to the general public.

  • For example, “They conducted their secret meetings in the back alley to avoid attention.”
  • A detective might say, “The criminal was hiding in the back alley, trying to evade capture.”
  • In a conversation about illegal activities, someone might mention, “They sell drugs in the back alley, away from prying eyes.”

21. In the inner circle

This phrase is used to describe something that is known or done by only a select group of people, usually those who are closest or most trusted.

  • For example, “They discussed the plan in the inner circle, away from prying ears.”
  • A person might say, “Only those in the inner circle know the truth about what happened.”
  • In a secretive organization, someone might say, “Those in the inner circle hold all the power.”

22. In the inner sanctum

This phrase refers to being in a highly confidential or restricted area, often used metaphorically to describe being privy to secret information or being part of an exclusive group.

  • For instance, “Only a few people are allowed in the inner sanctum of the company.”
  • A person might say, “Being in the inner sanctum of the organization means you have access to top-level decisions.”
  • In a discussion about a secret society, someone might mention, “The inner sanctum is where the highest rituals take place.”

23. In the inner chamber

This phrase is used to describe something that is known or done by only a small, select group of people, often with a sense of exclusivity or confidentiality.

  • For example, “They discussed the matter in the inner chamber to ensure absolute secrecy.”
  • A person might say, “Only those in the inner chamber have access to classified information.”
  • In a political context, someone might mention, “Decisions are made in the inner chamber, away from public scrutiny.”

24. In the innermost

This phrase describes something that is hidden or kept secret, typically referring to thoughts, feelings, or knowledge that is not shared openly.

  • For instance, “He kept his true intentions in the innermost recesses of his mind.”
  • A person might say, “Only in the innermost depths of my heart do I truly understand.”
  • In a discussion about personal struggles, someone might mention, “The innermost battles are often the hardest to fight.”

25. In the innermost circle

This phrase refers to something that is known or done by only a small, exclusive group of people, typically those who are closest or most trusted.

  • For example, “Only those in the innermost circle are aware of the true plan.”
  • A person might say, “The innermost circle is where decisions are made and secrets are shared.”
  • In a discussion about a secret organization, someone might mention, “Only those in the innermost circle have access to the organization’s true agenda.”

26. In the innermost sanctum

This phrase refers to doing something in a private or hidden manner, away from the public eye or scrutiny. It implies that the action or information is being kept confidential or concealed.

  • For example, “They discussed their plans in the innermost sanctum of the organization.”
  • A politician might make decisions “in the innermost sanctum of their office.”
  • A group might plan a surprise party “in the innermost sanctum of their friend’s house.”
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27. In the innermost chamber

Similar to the previous phrase, this term suggests doing something in a secret or concealed location. It implies that the activity is being kept away from prying eyes or unwanted attention.

  • For instance, “They held their secret meetings in the innermost chamber of the building.”
  • A spy might receive classified information “in the innermost chamber of a secure facility.”
  • A secret society might gather “in the innermost chamber of an ancient temple.”

28. Hush money

This phrase refers to money that is given to someone in order to keep them quiet or prevent them from revealing certain information. It implies that the payment is intended to maintain secrecy or prevent the disclosure of sensitive details.

  • For example, “The politician paid hush money to the witness in order to cover up the scandal.”
  • A company might offer hush money to an employee who witnessed illegal activities within the organization.
  • A celebrity might pay hush money to prevent the release of compromising photographs.

29. Behind the cloak

This phrase suggests doing something in a secretive or hidden manner, often involving deception or disguise. It implies that the action is being carried out away from public knowledge or awareness.

  • For instance, “They operated behind the cloak of darkness, executing their plan without being seen.”
  • A spy might gather intelligence “behind the cloak of a false identity.”
  • A criminal organization might carry out illegal activities “behind the cloak of a legitimate business.”

30. Behind the guise

Similar to the previous phrase, this term implies doing something while pretending to be someone or something else. It suggests that the true intention or identity is being concealed or disguised.

  • For example, “He carried out his scheme behind the guise of a friendly neighbor.”
  • A con artist might deceive people “behind the guise of a legitimate business.”
  • A spy might gather information “behind the guise of a journalist.”
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31. Under the radar

This phrase refers to doing something without attracting attention or going unnoticed. It implies that someone is doing something in a covert or hidden manner.

  • For example, “She’s been dating him for months, but they’ve been keeping it under the radar.”
  • In a discussion about avoiding detection, someone might say, “If you want to succeed, you have to fly under the radar.”
  • A person might use this phrase to describe their approach to accomplishing a task without interference, saying, “I prefer to work under the radar to avoid unnecessary distractions.”

32. On the QT

This phrase is used to describe doing something in a secretive or confidential manner. It implies that the information or action should be kept quiet or not disclosed to others.

  • For instance, “They’re planning a surprise party for her, but it’s all on the QT.”
  • In a conversation about classified information, someone might say, “This document is strictly on the QT; don’t share it with anyone.”
  • A person might use this phrase to describe a private conversation, saying, “Let’s talk on the QT, away from prying ears.”

33. Behind the eight ball

This phrase refers to being in a challenging or disadvantageous situation, often without others knowing about it. It implies that someone is facing difficulties secretly or without the support of others.

  • For example, “He lost his job and is now behind the eight ball.”
  • In a discussion about managing personal finances, someone might say, “If you don’t save money, you’ll constantly be behind the eight ball.”
  • A person might use this phrase to describe their struggle with a hidden problem, saying, “I’m dealing with some personal issues that have put me behind the eight ball.”