Feeling confused can sometimes lead us to give up on a task, frustrated. What is less emphasized is that confusion may also promote happy (epistemic) endings to our inquiries. It has recently been argued that confusion motivates effortful investigative behaviors which can help us acquire hard-to-get epistemic goods. While the motivational power of confusion and its benefits for learning has been uncovered in recent years, the exact nature of the phenomenon remains obscure. In this paper we attempt to shed light on the nature and epistemic value of an experience we are all familiar with: the experience of being confused at an object, a statement, etc. We first review the psychological literature on confusion, where it is most often considered to be an epistemic emotion. We then propose a refined account of confusion, by drawing on the literature on metacognitive or noetic feelings, both in psychology and in the philosophy of mind. Finally we show how our account may explain findings about the role of the experience of confusion in motivating deeper inquiry into complex problems and bringing about epistemic success in these cases.