There are hundreds of emojis available on iOS and Android mobile device keyboards -- everything from tacos, to national flags, to artists are represented in cartoon emoji form.
On Snapchat, however, the emojis you see appear next to your friends' names mean a myriad of different things -- and they can be hard to decipher.
If you know me, you know I love two things more than anything: cats and sleeping. So it's fitting that the two emojis I use most often in my normal texting keyboard are:
Another thing you may already know about me is that I love using Snapchat. So when emojis started popping up in my list of chats with friends in the app, I needed to get to the bottom of it.
In this post, we'll dive into the history of Snapchat emojis and what they all mean. Bear in mind that these emojis vary slightly across iOS and Android devices, so we've written out what the faces look like, too.
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What do Snapchat emojis mean?
Snapchat emojis track the activity and behavior between you and your Snapchat friends. The frequency, timing, and pattern of your Snapchat interactions determine which emojis appear in your list of Snapchat chats. For example: 😊 smiling face means the user is one of your best friends, 💛 yellow heart means the user is your #1 best friend.
Want to see these Snapchat emojis in their proper context? Check out the Snapchat screenshot below, along with a few different emojis you might see in your own app. To access this page, open up your Snapchat app and swipe right.
As you can see in the screenshot above, each emoji appears to the far right of the user with whom you have a unique Snapchat relationship.
When Snapchat was first created, the app used to show whom a user's best friends were publicly (your "best friends" on Snapchat are the users to whom you've sent the most snaps back and forth). You can imagine why users took issue with this; can you imagine the awkwardness of finding your best friend or significant other was best friends on Snapchat with somebody else?
So, in 2015, Snapchat (now Snap. Inc) made the "best friends" emoji private, in the name of user privacy, and hid the lists of other users' best friends. This, of course, brought about more outraged reactions. Snap Inc. CEO Evan Spiegel has said the app will reintroduce public best friends, but how and when this will take shape remains to be seen.
Today, the friend emojis we decoded for you below can appear inside a specific group of best friends, as shown in the screenshot above, to provide greater detail about the nature of your relationship with each of your Snapchat friends.
But with more more insight into how users interact with friends, you need to know how these behaviors are represented in the app. Let's dive into each emoji so you can understand your Snapchat contacts list better. And remember: These emojis are only visible to you.
Snapchat Emoji Meanings
Snapchat Friend Milestones
1. Smiley Face Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: This user is one of your best friends on Snapchat. You frequently send Snaps back and forth to each other.
2. Yellow Heart Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: This user is your #1 best friend. You send the most Snaps to this user, and they send the most Snaps to you.
3. Smirking Face Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: You're one of this user's best friends, but they aren't one of your best friends. They send you more Snaps than you send them.
4. Grimacing Face Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: Your #1 best friend is their #1 best friend, too. You both send lots of Snaps to the same user.
5. Sunglasses Face Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: One of your best friends is one of their best friends. You send a lot of Snaps to someone they also send a lot of Snaps to.
6. Red Heart Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: You've been #1 best friends (yellow heart status) with this user for two weeks in a row.
7. Pink Hearts Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: You've been #1 best friends with this user for two months in a row.
8. Fire Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: You and this user are on a Snapstreak -- you've been sending each other Snaps for several days in a row. The number of fire emojis you have next to your friend's name dictates the number of days you've been on a Snapstreak with them. After a certain number of days, a numeral will appear next to a single fire emoji to tell you how long your streak has lasted.
9. 100 Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: You've been on a Snapstreak with this user for 100 days in a row.
10. Hourglass Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: Your Snapstreak with this user will end if you don't send them a Snap very soon. You can send them a Snap or a Chat to keep it going.
11. Baby Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: You and this user have recently added each other as Snapchat friends.
12. Gold Star Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: Someone has replayed this user's Snap within the past 24 hours.
13. Gold Sparkles Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: You're in a Snapchat Group Chat with this user. Learn how to start a Snapchat Group in this article.
14. Birthday Cake Emoji on Snapchat
What it means: Today is this user's birthday. This emoji will only appear if the user indicated their date of birth in their Account information. Learn how to add your birthday to your account in this article.
Snapchat Story Emojis
While the 14 emojis above describe your relationship with each of your Snapchat friends, there are other emojis that represent the "verified" accounts of Snapchat's most famous users. Here are some of them:
Key 🔑 -- Musician DJ Khaled (username: djkhaled305)
Balloon 🎈 -- Musician Rihanna (username: rihanna)
Cactus 🌵 -- Actor and musician Jared Leto (username: jaredleto)
Bicep 💪 -- Actor and bodybuilder Arnold Schwarzenegger (username: arnoldschnitzel)
Pink Heart 💟 -- Actor and musician Selena Gomez (username: selenagomez)
Clapboard 🎬 -- TV personality Ryan Seacrest (username: ryanseacrest)
Pear 🍐 -- Musician Rick Ross (username: ferrarifatboy)
Cherry 🍒 -- Actor and musician Demi Lovato (username: theddlovato)
Chequered Flag 🏁 -- Racing driver Lewis Hamilton (username: lewishamilton)
Rowboat 🚣 -- Musical group The Lonley Island (username: tliboys)
Up Arrow ⬆️ -- Musical group One Direction (username: onedirection)
Snapchat Status Icons
Last, but not least, in your Snapchat emoji lexicon are the chat icons. These icons appear underneath the name of the Snapchat user on your friends list, as shown below.
These icons represent the status of a chat you've sent or received from one of your Snapchat friends, and they can help you determine to whom you sent or received a snap, the type of snap, and if the snap has been opened. Here they are and what they mean.
1. Purple Arrow Emojis
What they mean: The emojis above indicate that you have successfully sent a video snap -- or a snap that includes sound -- to another Snapchat user. When the emoji turns from solid to white, the snap has been viewed by that user.
2. Red Arrow Emojis
What they mean: The emojis above indicate that you have successfully sent a still-image snap -- or a snap that does not include sound -- to another Snapchat user. When the emoji turns from solid to white, the snap has been viewed by that user.
3. Blue Arrow Emojis
What they mean: The emojis above indicate that you have successfully sent a text-based snap to another Snapchat user. When the emoji turns from solid to white, the snap has been viewed by that user.
4. Purple Square Emojis
What they mean: The emojis above indicate that you have received a video snap -- or a snap that includes sound -- from another Snapchat user. After you open and view the snap, the emoji will turn from solid to white.
5. Red Square Emojis
What they mean: The emojis above indicate that you have received a still-image snap -- or a snap that does not include sound -- from another Snapchat user. After you open and view the snap, the emoji will turn from solid to white.
6. Blue Square Emojis
What they mean: The emojis above indicate that you have received a text-based snap from another Snapchat user. After you open and view the snap, the emoji will turn from solid to white.
7. Interlaced Arrow Emojis
What they mean: The emojis above indicate that the Snapchat user to whom you sent a snap has opened and taken a screenshot of your snap using their mobile device.
How to Change Emojis for Friends and Snapchat Streaks
If these emojis aren't speaking to you, you can change them within your Snapchat account. For example, your best friends could be represented by a pizza slice instead of a yellow heart if you really love pizza (and your friends, I suppose). Here's how it's done:
1. Open up your Snapchat app and swipe down. You'll see your profile screen and Snapcode.
2. Tap the Settings gear in the upper right-hand corner.
3. Select "Manage" under the "Additional Services" menu.
4. Select "Friend Emojis."
5. From there, you can tap into each signifier and choose a new emoji to represent what it means.
There you have it. We'll keep this post updated with new developments in the world of Snapchat emojis. In the meantime, keep snapping to see how your emojis change, and let us know how long your longest snap streak is.