Most-Used Emojis on Twitter: Not Quite What You’d Expect

An aggregation of tweets in different languages shows the top 100 emoticons on Twitter.
An aggregation of tweets in different languages shows the top 100 emoticons on Twitter. –LEX VAN LIESHOUT/EPA

Emoticons: those little graphics we use to express ourselves online that can say everything, or absolutely nothing at all (I’m lookin’ at you, Eggplant).

Now, thanks to’s DataLab, we now know what the most popular emojis are on Twitter. “Emoji’’ means “picture character in Japanese, by the way.

Using an algorithm made by Matthew Rothenberg (who fittingly lists “emoji’’ as one of his interests on Twitter), the folks at DataLab pulled data from tweets in Arabic, Mandarin, English, and a bunch of other languages. Then, they gifted to us a list of the top 100 emojis used on Twitter, which you can see here in full. The official names of the emojis come from this cheat sheet.


Here are some cool takeaways from the list:

1. Hearts are really, really popular. Plain old “Hearts,’’ the emoji of a red heart on a white background is the most popular emoji by far, with over 342 million tweets. Also making the top 100 list: Heart Eyes, Heart, Kissing Heart, Two Hearts, Broken Heart, Purple Heart, Blue Heart, Heartpulse, Sparkling Heart, Revolving Hearts, Cupid (heart with an arrow through it), Green Heart, and Heart Eyes Cat.

2. The three most popular facial emojis are Joy, Unamused, and Heart Eyes. Take of that what you will.

3. The most popular female emoji is Information Desk Person, a lady in a pink shirt raising one hand.

4. The most popular male emoji is Walking, a guy taking a step in a red shirt and jeans.

5. Number 25, Pray, has been interpreted in common parlance as two people high-fiving. So, Twitter users have either been feeling very devout, or super stoked to see you.

6. The only animal to make the top 25 list is See No Evil, a monkey covering his eyes. Honestly, it’s a pretty darn adorable monkey. If I were tweeting, I’d give it at least one Sparking Heart.

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