Secret Emoji Codes

shocked emoji face on a blue background

The secret emoji code and their hidden messages.

a shocked emoji face with open mouth
Image credit – Shubham Dhage on Unsplash

Emojis are powerful

You’ve probably heard that it’s a good idea to use an emoji in your captions to spice up your posts, and it is. Emojis are powerful. Studies show that people who use emojis are considered to be more personable. And emojis with faces were found to be more influential than faceless emojis – a smiley emoji vs. a heart, for example. Bizarrely, businesses that regularly use emojis are rated to have better customer service than those that don’t.

But before you dive into the world of emojis, please do yourself a favour – educate yourself on their alternative meanings. You could save yourself from making a very embarrassing mistake.

The smiling insult

The complex meanings of these little pictograms is evident in the increasing number of online emoji dictionaries. You might be surprised by the varied, and sometimes not very obvious, usage. Take the smiley face 😀 for example. This is sometimes used after an insult or sarcastic remark to remove some of the sting.

Likewise, the tipping hand 💁‍♀️ emoji. Originally designed to represent a person at an information desk, offering help or guidance. Now however, because this emoji looks like someone flipping their hair, or waving a hand while saying something sarcastic, it’s often used to convey a sassy “I told you so”.

Emoji meanings

The emoji can also have a different meaning depending on the country, the device you are using, even the context of the conversation. (Did you know that TikTok has a whole range of secret emojis that aren’t available on Apple or Android devices?)

I have listed the secret meanings of a few familiar emojis below. Bear in mind that this is by no means an exhaustive list. No doubt by the time you finish reading it the meanings will have changed again. 

  1. Goat = greatest of all time. A friendly post
  2. Snake = backstabber
  3. Octopus = hug
  4. Devil = horny
  5. Pizza = I love you
  6. Fire = hot/lit
  7. Flamenco dancer = you want to party-hard
  8. Knife = someone’s indicating that they are in a really bad mood and want to create some destruction.
  9. Girls with bunny ears = girls night out (or code for sex worker)
  10. Info desk lady = exasperation
  11. Eggplant (aubergine) = male genitalia
  12. Taco = female genitalia
  13. Peach = buttocks
  14. Avocado = often used to indicate someone is hopelessly ‘basic’ and just does whatever is trendy at the moment.
  15. Croissant = anti-Brexit
  16. Snowflake = someone easily offended
  17. Clapping hands = Inserted in between every single word in a sentence, it’s a passive-aggressive way of emphasising something -‘get it into your thick heads’.
  18. WC = woman crush
  19. Frog = you’re ugly
  20. Pill / flower / leaves = drugs
  21. Eyes = asking for explicit photos
  22. Money with wings = losing money fast
  23. Upside-down face = irony / sarcasm
  24. Raised hand = stop / high five / talk to the hand
  25. New moon face = disappointment 
  26. Sweat drops = you’ve got style / sexual 


So now you know. By all means use emojis in captions for effect and to add colour and interest to your posts. But make sure you know their hidden meaning. If in doubt, stick to positive face emojis because you can’t go very wrong with them. Well, not at the time I just hit the Publish button.

Emojipedia – the Home of Emoji meanings

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