The K-pop Lingo

kpop vocab

I’ve come to the realization that K-pop fangirls have their own vocabulary. At first, I thought they were normal, but when I used them around my friends, they had no clue what I was really talking about. So then, here’s a list of K-pop lingo that I will use in my blog. As I find the need to define more, I will add on with another post.

Aegyo (n.) – Being overly cute in an exaggerated and childlike way. Usually, it involves some form of hand to face gesture, puffed cheeks, or high pitched voices. Girls usually use Aegyo to try to act cute and grab boys’ attentions. It reminds me of the puppy dog pout used frequently in Kim Possible. Guy idols use Aegyo too but more of an act of fanservice. There probably wouldn’t be sighting of your everyday male using Aegyo seriously. It is seen everyone in K-pop.

  • Bbuing Bbuing  – a form of Aegyo in which the user puts up two fists next to their cheeks and move them in a motion similar to revving a motorcycle. It is represented by Sandeul below.
  • Gwiyomi Player – another form of Aegyo created by Ilhoon of BtoB and spread through a song by Hari. “Gwiyomi” is slang for “a cute person” and can be seen as “Kiyomi.” It main part of the song is saying “1 + 1 is Gwiyomi, 2+ 2 is Gwiyomi, 3 + 3 is Gwiyomi and so on.” The gestures featured are using your fingers to represent the numbers added and then making some type of motion to make yourself look cute. For example, holding up one finger on each hand for “1 + 1″and then using them to poke at your cheeks.
Ribbet collage

From left to right, Himchan (B.A.P), Yura (Girl’s Day), Sandeul (B1A4), and Jessica (SNSD) show different forms of Aegyo

Bias (n.) – A bias is a certain member or person you like the most. Usually, you would have one bias per group. However, there are many cases in which a bias is difficult to choose or you just aren’t familiar enough with the group to have one. Most people have accumulated many biases from different groups. You may also have soloists as a bias. From bias, you get words like Bias List, and Ultimate Bias.

  • Bias List – A personal list ranking the members of a group from the one you like the most to the one you like the least. Usually mentioned as a Bias List Ruiner, there are certain members that cause many people to question whether or not their bias is truly their favorite member.
  • Ultimate Bias – One person out of all of the Korean entertainers that is your MOST FAVORITE.

Comeback (n.) – A time in which a band or group comes back and releases a new single, music video, album, or EP. Usually, it would be followed up by performances on a weekly music show. The actual release date of the song or music video is considered a comeback to some while to others, the actual comeback is on the day they first perform it on a music show. Can be used as a verb “to comeback” or “is coming back”

Fan Cafe – Usually on a website called Daum, fan cafes are official fanclub websites for a group’s fanbase. Usually, an account has to be made and the artists themselves post onto the fan cafe updating about what they’re doing. You gather points and level up to access more exclusive features. However, the fan cafes are entirely in Korea. TVXQ currently has the largest fan cafe.

Fan Chant (n.) – Usually at music show performances or concerts there are certain times where the fans in unison shout a certain cheer. I personally don’t even know where they begin but they can usually be found online. Before going to a performance, one usually looks up the fan chants and learns them to be able to say them at the concert. Fan boys and Fan Girls they consist of parts where they would scream the ending word of a line, all of their members’ names, or the group name and a word of encouragement like “Hwaiting!” or “Saranghae!”

Fan Clubs (n.) – Part of the fan cafe but there are international fanclubs. For example, Soshified is the internation fanclub for Girl’s Generation. Fanclubs are usually seen with booths at events selling merchandise and also translating and sharing activities from the band. Fan Clubs are a combination of fans usually given a name. The band chooses what they want to name their fans. In America, Justin Bieber fans are “Beliebers.” In K-pop, Girl’s Generation fans are “Sones” There is usually an official name and official color.


A Fan Club booth for the K-pop group TVXQ

Leader (n.) – The leader of the group is pretty self-explanatory, they’re the leader. However, onstage it isn’t usually obvious to know who the leader is just by looking. Sometimes, the leader is the most popular, other times they are the oldest. Sometimes, the actual leader wouldn’t have been the person you guessed. Leaders usually play a role backstage. They tend to keep their group organized and encouraged taking on leadership roles. Many times the leaders are adored by their other members, sometimes they are also teased a lot.

Lightstick (n.) – Lightsticks are usually official and bought mainly for use at concerts. It is a great sight to see all the lightsticks in unison throughout the concert venue. Fans usually feel a connection with each other and with the band performing. Lightsticks come in many different shapes and sizes particular to the group you are seeing. They are usually in the official fan color.


The Big Bang Lighstick used by the many fans attending their World Tour

Maknae (n.) – Very simply the youngest member of the group. Maknaes play some type of role as an appeal to fans. As the baby of the group, it is often mentioned that they do most of the chores or gets teased. You can usually see other members looking out for the maknae. In some cases, there is a “fake maknae,” a member in the group that acts the most childish and based on actions seems to be the youngest.


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