The Truth About 'Cheerful' Eyebags

Beauty is subjective, and what is trending in one culture can be completely undesirable in the other. That's precisely the case with the makeup trend "cheerful eyebags," which is extremely popular in South Korea. In contrast, in the U.S., you would do anything to depuff those eyebags caused by lack of sleep, allergies, or excess salt intake (via Marie Claire). This Korean beauty trend called "aegyo sa" that translates to "charming fat" that started in 2015 somehow transformed eyebags that symbolized tiredness and aging into a sign of cheerfulness and youth (via Beauty Hub). You have to remember that though it may sound like the same thing, cheerful eyebags are closer to the eyes, giving an illusion of puff and not the dark, hollow eyebags that come to mind when you first hear the term (via Daily Mail). 

South Koreans think that these eyebags are cute and lively because they make your eyes look bigger and brighter, representing youth, so you have to clearly understand the difference before trying the trend to get the right result. The Guardian doesn't think this trend makes anyone look good and finds it ironic how a sign of exhaustion has somehow become a viral beauty trend. It seems one part of the world is investing in depuffing the eyebags while the other is puffing it up more, which is proof that beauty lies in the eye of the beholder.

How to get the charming 'aegyo sa' underbag look

"Aegyo sa" is very popular in the K-Beauty trend because it gives the appearance of "smiling eyes." The undereye swelling or puffiness is caused by fat deposits under your eyes that are more prominent when you are younger and decrease as people age due to volume loss (via Beauty Hub).

Plastic surgeon Dr. Kenneth Kim told Daily Mail, "Essentially, it is a bulge of fat immediately under the lash line that creates puffiness under the lower eyelid," and added that it can be achieved by lower eyelid surgery. People undergo surgeries to recreate this look by injecting fat tissue from your body in the undereye area or getting hyaluronic acid fillers right under your lower lash line. If surgery is too much commitment for you, you can also give the illusion of cheerful eyebags by using matte brown shadow right where your eyebags end. Then apply a highlighter all over the puffy area to give it a raised look.

Blogger Patricia Cahiga defended this trend by saying it was different from the tired and sleep-deprived eyebags. Here, you accentuate the layer of skin right under your eyelids to appear more awake as it gives your eyes more life (via International Business Times). We are not sure if this trend will gain the same popularity in America, but the cheerful eyebags trend is not slowing down anytime soon in South Korea.