The dominance of customer over the production/service employee, and as a result of this, increasing use of emotional labor in the workplace furthers the need to understand what emotional labor is. In this regard, the present paper reviews the literature to explain the concept ‘emotional labor’. In explaining emotional labor and its nomological network, the paper discusses the factors that affect and are affected by it. This paper contributes to the existing literature by assimilating different works done in this domain and providing a comprehensive understanding of emotional labor. This paper focuses on some of the critical issues, about which, the existing literature on emotional labor is silent and thus, providing a platform for further research.