various cursed emojis

Cursed Emojis

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Cursed Emojis or Cursed Expressions refers to a set of images of non-Unicode emojis which includes Stressed Emoji, Xok, Powercry, Fuckboy Emoji and others. Originally used by artists on Twitter, DeviantArt and Tumblr as a reference for commissions, starting in July 2019 many of the emojis gained popularity online in memes.


While the emojis featured in the set originated earlier,[1] the first viral collection of "cursed expressions" was assembled by Twitter user @blueaurorius on July 18th, 2019 (shown below), with the tweet receiving over 790 retweets and 1,800 likes in four months.[2] The set was assembled with purposes of using the emojis for reference when ordering artistic commissions.

Cursed Expression Meme 1 2 3 4 A 000000000000000 00000000000000 ogoo0000000 000000 ohhh B C D


In the following days, multiple artists on Twitter, Tumblr and DeviantArt reposted the chart, offering their subscribers to order commissions based on the expressions,[3][4][5] referring to them as A1, B2, etc. Additionally, multiple artists posted their drawings of characters wearing the expressions (examples shown below).[6][7]


While Xok, Powercry and some other emojis Emoji achieved meme recognition prior to the appearance of the "cursed expressions" chart, other emojis featured in the set, as well as several additional non-Unicode emojis, gained popularity in the following months.

On August 17th, 2019, @cursedemojis Twitter account was launched, collecting notable Cursed Emoji memes and fan art.[12]

Notable Cursed Emojis

Stressed Emoji (Cursed Emoji / Hyperventilating Emoji)

Stressed Emoji (B1, C1, C4, D2) refers to several similar "cursed emoji" images similar in appearance to a person experiencing feelings of anxiety and tiredness. The "stressed" emoji subtype can be distinguished by the emoji having bloodshot eyes and pursed lips. The first viral post containing the image was made on July 6th, 2019, by Twitter user D0nnieDark00.[8]

Retail workers after having to listen to maroon 5 and Ed sheernan all day My mom wants to see me for the first time in months and I'm


Xok (C3) refers to an illustration of the video game character Pac-Man with sharp teeth appearing to eat a red exit button on a Microsoft Windows window. Prior to its use in meme-dom, the image has been used in connection to the Pac-Man computer virus. The original image was first posted in August 2004.[9]

Pacman Click on the image a view. About This Image Stats and Info score: 53.67 Member. sasnastan Your Rating Galleries Qcawingยฑ o Created Art Images I was inspired by the Pwman game character. I always thought he was too cute for his appetite.

Screen-Reaching Emoji

Screen-Reaching Emoji refers to an image of a non-Unicode emoji with bloodshot eyes and pursed lips appearing to be reaching for the screen with its hand. A variation of the Stressed Emoji, the image saw extensive use as a reaction and an exploitable and inspired similarly-executed images of popular characters reaching for the screen. Examples of the meme are often paired with fourth-wall-breaking captions such as "You Think You're Safe?" and "Hand Them Over." The first viral post containing the meme belongs to Twitter user @PeachyKneeSocks on August 15th, 2019 (shown below).[10]

woodpecker @PeachyKneeSocks Me when I pspspspsps at a cat and it runs away 9:02 AM 15 Aug 2019

Powercry (Shy Emoji)

Powercry, also known as Cry Emoji and Shy Emoji, refers to several Cursed Emoji variations distinguished by large eyes, uneven outline and the appearance of either being shy, about to cry or crying. On the Cursed Emoji chart, A2 is a Powercry variation. Powercry was created by Twitter artist @OkayRoutt on November 28th, 2018,[13] and first became viral following his video posted on February 22nd, 2019 (shown below).[14]

Fuckboy Emoji

Fuckboy Emoji or Baseball Cap Lip Bite Emoji refers to several Cursed Emoji variations distinguished by the emoji biting its lip, having one eye half-closed, wearing a baseball cap backwards and having its thumb and index finger resting on its chin. On the Cursed Emoji chart, C2 is a Fuckboy Emoji variation. While the exact author of Lip Bite Emoji wearing a baseball cap backwards is unknown, the first viral post containing the image was made by Twitter user @medusabraids on April 17th, 2018, receiving over 5,700 retweets and 18,500 likes.[15]


Starting on October 8th, 2019, Twitter user @Pencil_Peach tweeted a series of fanart based on the emojis, with the first fan art image of Stressed Emoji and Powercry receiving over 9,800 retweets and 40,000 likes (shown below, left).[11] In the following days, more artists on Twitter joined the trend.

Search Interest

External References

[1] For the origins of specific emojis from the set, please refer to their respective Know Your Meme entries.

[2] Twitter โ€“ @blueaurorius' Tweet

[3] Twitter โ€“ @s0rrysap's Tweet

[4] Tumblr (via Wayback Machine) โ€“ harveychan's Post

[5] DeviantArt โ€“ niblhenne's Post

[6] Twitter โ€“ @DumDoggo's Tweet

[7] Twitter โ€“ @murfuss's Tweet

[8] Twitter โ€“ @D0nnieDark00's Tweet

[9] The Lens Flare โ€“ Pacman by sashatan

[10] Twitter โ€“ @PeachyKneeSocks' Post

[11] Twitter โ€“ @Pencil_Peach's Tweet

[12] Twitter โ€“ @cursedemojis

[13] Twitter โ€“ @okayroutt's Tweet

[14] Twitter โ€“ @okayroutt's Tweet

[15] Twitter โ€“ @medusabraids' Tweet (page unavailable)

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