How To Speak With Emojis? American Thing

Bodhi Ramosreviewed bySana Liashuk / more about Editorial Process18 min
Created: Dec 8, 2022Last updated: Jan 17, 2024
How To Speak With Emojis

Emojis are everywhere these days, and they’re becoming part of our everyday language. We send them to our friends, family members, colleagues, and loved ones. But this might be tricky – some emoji meanings today differ from what we think of them, and it can be an unpleasant experience. In this article, we will tell you everything about modern online English texting, the usage of emojis, the rules for putting them into your texts, and much more. So without further ado, let’s begin our bright and exciting journey. 

What are emojis, and why do we like them?

First of all, what are emojis? Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines it as small images, symbols, or icons we use in electronic communication. Using emojis can be very beneficial, but only if you know exactly when and where you should put them. Let’s find out the most significant advantages and essential drawbacks of using them in daily conversations.

Benefits of using emoji phrases

As we’ve just mentioned, using emojis might be truly beneficial. More and more people (millennials and Gen Z) prefer to place smiley faces in the middle or at the end of their messages. But why are we doing it? Here are some of the most obvious reasons:

  1. Emojis settle the tone of the conversation. When you chat with someone online, and the person doesn’t use any emojis for a while, you immediately begin to worry. Why? Because emojis make every conversation feel more friendly and positive. So the main advantage of talking with emojis is showing your interlocutor how kind and light-hearted you are. 
  2. Emojis explain your emotions and facial expressions. If you speak to someone far from you, you might need help when you want to show your facial expression (but don’t want to take a photo). Emojis are great for this case too! Just pick up the right smiley face and put it in your message. 
  3. Emojis define your tone. Another benefit of emoji usage is the power to share your mood and the tone of the message without your voice. Once again, all you have to do is to take your phone or laptop, click on the suitable emoji, and that’s it. Your interlocutor will immediately know whether you are happy, upset, angry, or disappointed. 
  4. Emojis explain your gestures. As we use emojis mostly in online conversations (honestly, we have yet to learn how to use them offline), sometimes it might be hard to show some gestures that we would do if we saw our interlocutor at that moment. Luckily, there are enough face and hand emojis that can help you easily explain what you’ve wanted to do. 
  5. Emojis are a great communication way for kids and language beginners. Since they are pretty obvious, it is easy to understand the context of the message with the emoji in it. That is why many kids start using emotions long before they learn how to write a message. 

As you can see, using emojis might be really beneficial. But what about the drawbacks? Are there any of them, and do we have to worry? Well, luckily, we don’t. Even though there still might be some misunderstandings, none of them is comparable to your mood. So, let’s see the drawbacks of emoji language. 

  • We became lazy. It is sad, and it’s hard to admit, but sporadically, it is true. More and more people have started using emojis to emphasize their messages, and now they use them even without texts or any context. Sometimes, it is hard to understand such people.
  • We might not understand each other. As we said before, some language emoji meanings differ from what we think they mean. And that is why occasionally, we can send a message with one meaning, but the person will send it back and ask: “Are you okay?” To avoid such situations, you will find common emoji meanings in the article. 
  • We can use them to hide our true feelings. Every so often, sending one sad emoji is easier than explaining in the text why you had a bad day. But it is important to understand the boundary – it might be nice a few times, but if you do it frequently, it might be a significant drawback. 
  • We might look weird. Again, it’s all about the context. But using too many emojis may look weird since the person we will talk to won’t want to chat with us ever again. The key is not to overuse it. 

These are the most significant benefits and drawbacks of using such images in your private messages. And now that you know the emoji meaning and benefits, it is time to learn some significant and essential rules that will come in handy in your next conversation. So please, make yourself comfortable – we will start right away.

Sign language emoji rules: To do and not to do

Of course, before using any emoji, you need to make sure that it means what it means. But this is not the only rule of online conversations! Below, we will discuss the most important rules suitable for online chats with emoji usage. 

Rule 1: Avoid sexting emojis (when you are not sexting 😅)

The first thing you need to remember about emojis is that if they look slightly like a human body part, it means that they are used exactly to describe this part. Yes, we know it might be hard to accept. But now you understand that the eggplant or peach emojis (🍆 and 🍑) mean exactly what you thought they did. Mostly, this type of emoji is used in sexting. However, you can also see it in regular messages from your friends, etc.

Rule 2: Find the meaning

If you want to send an emoji but are not certain about it, open your browser and type it in to double-check the information. The best place to find the description is Emojipedia – here, you can find every emoji that ever existed. There are plenty of situations when you look at the small image and try to realize – what emoji it is, whether it is appropriate to use it in these circumstances, and so on. 

On the other hand, think about that – if you have to Google the explanation of the emoji, would your friend or family member spend their time checking what it means? We think that the answer is no. So please, be careful when choosing the symbols before sending them. 

Rule 3: Don’t overuse emoji language sentences at work

Seriously, don’t. Of course, you can always share this or that symbol and image in a group chat with your colleagues. But you don’t want to become a “weirdo” or “crazy” in your group, right? Overdoing everything, including using emojis, has never led to anything good.

If you want to create an image of a pleasant person, place some friendly emojis at the end of the sentences. Once again, don’t make it too much! One smiley face would be completely enough.

Rule 4: Don’t use emojis instead of words

If you want to make your message, letter, or text accessible for all readers, don’t replace the words with emojis. First of all, it looks a little weird. But it is not the main reason. Moreover, there are a few explanations for this rule. 

Foremost, many emojis look different on various devices. Therefore, they might bring a different sense to your sentence. So the one person reading your text will easily understand it, while the other might need some clarification. 

Another reason is that it makes your text impossible to scan. Especially this step is important for public websites, advertisements, etc. Clients don’t like to read such information for a long time – they prefer to scroll through it and find the details they need quickly. The more emojis are between the words, the harder it will be for customers to get what they want. 

How to use emojis: Gen Z edition

How To Speak With Emoji

Now you know as many details as we can provide about emojis. And it’s time to finally understand how to use them, what they mean, and in what situations they look suitable. We will start with Gen Z versions of emojis since they are the people who use them the most. Let’s check out a guide through zoomer’s emojis!

  • 💀;

This one looks pretty obvious – how hard can it be to define a skull? That’s what you might think. But how to use emoji properly? Millennials might think about this emoji as something Halloween-y, creepy, etc. Zoomers, on the other hand, have their own vision. This emoji literally means “dying with laughter.” Next time someone sends you a joke or a meme, you can easily show your reaction using this emoji. For example:

Have you seen the last episode of The Big Bang Theory? 💀💀💀

You have no idea what her ex did yesterday. 💀💀💀

  • 👁👄👁;

This goofy little face looks kind of lost, but its true meaning is being completely shocked by something (usually, some news). The idea of this emoji combination is to show a shocked face like we typically have when some new information stuns us. And you can easily express it with this emoji. For example:

Did you know that Ross and Rachel are back together? 👁👄👁

Have you already seen the name of the new manager? 👁👄👁

  • 🧢;

You can often see the blue cap emoji in the comments sections. Mostly, people write it when they see something hardly believable in the videos. The reason for it is simple – the emoji has come from the slang phrase “no cap,” meaning “no lie.” And now that you are aware of its meaning, you know how to talk in emoji about untruths. For example:

I know that you are telling the truth 🧢 As always.

Yes, you had obviously been hanging out with Johnny Depp yesterday. 🧢

  • 🤡;

You might think that the circus clown emoji is just a clown. Well, you are partially right. Zoomers use this icon to refer to someone whose behavior can be described as silly and foolish. For example:

Guess what. I’ve just texted my ex. 🤡

I can’t believe we decided to do that while my mom was in the next room. 🤡

  • 😭;

What was the foremost thought that appeared in your mind when you saw this emoji for the first time? It is probably a simple, loudly crying symbol. And it is for millennials – these people are not used to adding some hidden sense into obvious objects. On the other hand, Gen Z uses this emoji to describe incredulous laugh. For example:

When I heard the outrageous claim, all I could do was 😭.

The situation was so absurd that I burst into an 😭 reaction.

  • 🙂;

This cute yellow face with a slight smile is not here to express happiness and joy. But how to use emoji like that? Well, the best description of it is just a fake smile. You can use it when talking about uncomfortable and awkward situations. Most of the time, this emoji is used ironically. For example:

Oh, how happy I am to go to the party where I know no one except my ex and his new girlfriend 🙂.

Look at her, going here smiling as she never spread those rumors about you and me 🙂.

  • 🙏;

If you want to translate the meaning of this emoji to English, the result will depend on your age. For example, millennials use it to describe classical “high five” action. On the other hand, Zoomers use it to say thank you or express high hopes about something. For example:

Tell me that you’ve managed to get us tickets to the Harry Styles concert. 🙏

Thank you, thank you, thank you 🙏. I have no idea what I would do without your help. 

  • 🔥;

Fire emoji is one of those symbols that have similar meanings for every generation. If you want to transform this emoji to words, you will see such synonyms as cool, amazing, great, hot, attractive, and even sexy. Be sure you are on fire if you see it in your comment section. For example:

Your new suit 🔥🔥🔥. 

Oh my God, your recent photo shoot made me gasp! You look 🔥🔥🔥.

  • ✨;

The little spark emoji is totally a Gen Z invention. Usually, it is included in sentences to emphasize or add accent to certain words or phrases. For example:

I am going to see ✨ Eddie ✨ tonight!

I am so excited to show you the ✨ project ✨ I’m working on right now. 

  • 🐐;

If someone sends you this emoji, don’t worry. The person doesn’t want to offend you. Instead, they want to tell you that you are GOAT – the greatest of all time. This abbreviation was popular dozens of years ago, and with the invention of emojis, it has become even easier to use to compliment people. For example:

I can’t believe I saw Meryl Streep yesterday. She is a 🐐!

Thank you for being here for me! You are a 🐐.

  • 🤠;

Ah, what a cute little cowboy, right? Yes. And no. Zoomers use this emoji ironically. This happy face describes the situation when you are smiling on the outside but dying inside. This emoji appeared during the pandemic but remains popular nowadays. For example:

You look so happy watching your best friend hanging out with your boyfriend without you 🤠.

Please tell me that it will end soon 🤠.

  • 🐸☕️;

This old but gold emoji combination appeared in the early 2010s after the Internet faced the meme portraying Kermit the Frog with a cup of tea. The caption on the picture said something like, “it is none of my business.” Now we use it to spill some tea about something we don’t know and then stop saying anything meaning “no further comment.” For example:

X: I know what Jason did to Kate during their trip.

Y: Do you? Tell me now!

X: He is still my friend, so no, sorry 🐸☕.

  • ❤️;

How do you use emojis like this one? Because it looks like a classic red heart, and there is nothing it can describe besides love and romantic feelings. Nowadays, on TikTok, you can see hundreds of comments using this emoji. Unfortunately, not all of them show positive feelings. Today people use this red-heart emoji to deny or refuse something sarcastically. In some cases, it might even seem a little passive-aggressive. For example:

X: Can I have your dress for my party?  
Y: No ❤️.

  • 🤰;

Pregnant woman emoji is another way to compliment someone. Gen Z uses it to tell that someone is so cool that they want to have a baby with them. You can mostly see such emojis on TikTok in the comments section of videos with beautiful people. For example:

X: I met the guy for the first time yesterday.

Y: Aaand?

X: 🤰🤰🤰.

  • 🙃;

In today’s crazy world, this emoji is essential. It perfectly describes our mental state when we have an awful day or face some troubles. It is similar to the cowboy emoji that we mentioned earlier. It can also show that we smile on the outside while struggling inside. For example:

I thought it would be the happiest day of my life, but apparently, it wasn’t 🙃.

I think someone just stole my phone 🙃.

  • 🧍.

We’ve decided to finish this list with this emoji simply because we find it hilarious. This standing guy refers to a few different meanings – you can use it when you are speechless or don’t know how to respond. Another way to use it is to say that you are waiting for someone or something but make it look a little passive-aggressive. For example:

Yes, don’t worry; I'm happy to stand here for an hour while you are doing your makeup 🧍.

Oh my God, he told me that he loves me, and I was just 🧍.


Bonus! 5 complete emoji sentence meanings and explanations

The best thing about texting with emojis is that you can send them to describe your feelings and even use them independently in sentences. So if you want to understand how to make emojis talk, this compilation is for you. 

  • 🤚👀🙅‍♀️.

The first sentence in our list will become handy when you face familiar situations but can’t stand them any longer. Literally, it means, “Hold up, I can’t.” For example:

X: I think I am falling in love with my ex. Again. 

Y: 🤚👀🙅‍♀️.

  • 👏👏👵.

This sentence is created to attract the attention of the person who hasn’t been responding to you for a while. It says, “over here, grandma,” referring to the process of calling old granny when she doesn’t know where to go. For example:

X: Hey! Stop ignoring me.

X: Are you lost? 

X: 👏👏👵.

  • 🚫⌛️🙅‍♀️👋.

Use this emoji combination if you don’t want to respond or talk about something with a particular person. It will be a perfect option since it means, “I don’t have time for this, and I really don’t care. Bye!” For example: 

X: My friend Matthew told me that he likes you. 

Y: 🚫⌛️🙅‍♀️👋.

  • 👯‍♀️💆‍♀️💆‍♀️.

This funny and simple combination would be perfect next time when you and your bestie write each other identical messages about something. You can use emojis like that to say you are “synchronized mind readers.” For example:

X: Did you know what he said?

Y: Something stupid, I guess. 

Q: Something stupid, I guess. 

Y: 👯‍♀️💆‍♀️💆‍♀️. 

  • 🙎‍♀️🔜💃.

Girls like this combination because it is convenient when getting ready in a hurry. You can save it in your recent emojis and always have something to answer. Literally, this sentence means “almost ready-ish.”

X: Jane, how long can it take to pick up the clothes and wear them?

Y: Don’t panic. 🙎‍♀️🔜💃.

Learn all emoji lingo tips with Promova 

To become fluent in English and start chatting with native speakers, you need to learn how to use emojis correctly. It is essential since you may misunderstand the meaning and offend your interlocutor. Luckily, you are in the right place – our guide to emojis will be enough to cover all your needs. 

Yet, just remember the definition of this or that emoji is not enough. You need to know how to put them in the sentence to make these emojis explain your thoughts properly. To do this, you need to learn some basic grammar and vocabulary English rules. And we are here to help you with that. 

The Promova online language-learning platform is the best opportunity for students from around the globe. It doesn’t matter what city or country you live in – if your goal is to master a foreign language, we will be happy to help. A few options are available, depending on your proficiency level, needs, and studying preferences. 

  1. Personal lessons with professional tutors. This is probably the most popular option. All you need to do is to pass the proficiency test (to prepare the lessons based on your knowledge), choose your teacher and lesson time, and that’s it! You will be pleasantly surprised about how fast you will become fluent in English. 
  2. Group lessons with students globally. If you aim not only to learn a new language but also to have fun and meet some friends, we recommend joining our group classes. You can speak with people from other countries, practice various skills, and enjoy your studying process as much as possible. 
  3. Conversation Club. For those who want to practice only speaking skills, Promova provides a unique Conversation Club. You just need to choose the topic you are interested in and the time suitable for you, and enjoy the wide variety of subjects and discussions with other students. Oh, and the best thing about it is that it is entirely free!
  4. Promova mobile application. If you are keen to learn English but think that you don’t need any help, we can offer you a convenient state-of-the-art application available on various devices, including phones, tablets, and laptops. Install it from App Store or Google Play, pass a short test to determine your language level and studying needs, and enjoy an accessible interface, unique lessons, and much more. 

As you can see, Promova truly has something for everyone. All you need to do is to visit the platform’s official website and choose the option that suits you best. So what are you waiting for? Join Promova now, and see the initial results sooner than you may expect!


In general, emojis nowadays have become an integral part of online conversations. People use them regardless of their age, citizenship, or religion. There is no need to install any translation app because most emojis are identical globally. They are also a fantastic opportunity for people who are just beginning their English study journey to interact with native speakers.

To succeed with it, you need to know the basic rules of using emojis. We’ve mentioned them above, but here is brief information about those rules to sum them up. So, to properly use the emojis in text messages, you need to:

  • understand the meaning of every emoji you send and be able to check it in third-party sources; 
  • avoid sensitive emojis that can be interpreted as something inappropriate;
  • avoid using emojis to replace words in texts and messages;
  • control the amount of emojis not to look weird or kind of crazy. 

We hope that our comprehensive emojis guide was helpful to you. Now that you know the meanings of many symbols you can see on the Internet, you can easily implement them in your online routine. And now, please, share your favorite emojis with us. You know that we are excited to learn from you as well!


What are the benefits of using emojis in texts?

There are many of them. First, they can help you easily share your thoughts and feelings about a particular situation. Another advantage is that emojis settle the tone of your conversation – depending on your choice, the interlocutor will know whether you are happy, upset, angry, etc. Emojis also allow you to share your gestures and even facial expressions. 

Are there any drawbacks to using emojis?

Even though there are many benefits, using emojis also has some drawbacks. The more you use emojis in your messages, the harder it might be for your interlocutors to understand you. Sometimes people become even lazier since it is much easier to click on yellow faces than to write a complete message. Overuse of emojis might make us look crazy – so it is essential to know the borders. 

What does the 🧢 emoji mean?

You can use emoji 🧢 when you believe someone is telling a lie. It came from the slang expression “no cap,” which verbatim means “no lie.” Mostly, this expression is used on social media – you can often see it in comments sections of TikTok, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Reddit, etc. 

How to talk with emojis?

To make the most out of your emoji-talking experience, you need to remember some rules. First, you need to avoid using emojis without context – particular symbols that look like parts of the human body actually mean those parts. So please, be aware when using eggplant, cherry, or peach emojis. Another rule is always to check the meaning of the emoji you want to send. Sporadically, they can be offensive to other people. 


PromovaNov 9th, 2023
Hello, Audrey! Thank you for your valuable input and suggestions for our article. We truly appreciate your efforts in reviewing and providing edits. We have carefully considered your changes and recommendations, and we have already incorporated them into the article. Your insights have helped enhance the overall quality and clarity of the content. Once again, we sincerely thank you for your contribution!
Coraline BestOct 11th, 2023
this article is so much fun! I never realized emojis had so much depth. 😃👍
PromovaJul 11th, 2023
Certainly! Yes, there are recommended guidelines for using emojis effectively and appropriately. These include considering the context, understanding the meaning and connotations of emojis, using them sparingly and in moderation, and being mindful of cultural interpretations. The article you mentioned provides further insights into these guidelines, offering valuable tips for using emojis in a way that enhances communication and minimizes the risk of misunderstandings.
Kayla PatelJul 11th, 2023
Are there any recommended guidelines for using emojis effectively and appropriately?
AudreyJul 6th, 2023
Corrections from a native English speaker and teenager: 😭 is used more as an incredulous laugh, often to make fun of the text. For instance (real example): "I had to listen to [person] tell me that the edible part of a fruit is its peel 😭". Additionally, 🧢, while rarely used, means "cap" as in "lie", not "no cap". For example: A: [animal] looks like Totoro B: no it doesn't A: 🧢 [it does; you're capping/lying] I've never seen any of the "emoji phrases" used, and I probably would have trouble deciphering them. I've also never seen🧍used and I wouldn't understand it if it were sent to me. The others, excluding 💀, are also rarely/never used in the context you've given.