We’ve all been through a lot these last few years, but if our emoji use is anything to judge by, we’re handling it all pretty well. According to the Unicode Consortium, the not-for-profit organization responsible for digitizing the world’s languages, 92% of the world’s online population use emoji. And they’ve collected the data on just which emoji we’re using the most.
Based on their research, the emoji used most by people around the world is the Tears of Joy, which you may recognize as the laughing/crying face. This one is so popular, it accounts for 5% of all emoji use and it’s been reigning supreme since 2019 (the group didn’t release a list in 2020) and was the most tweeted one last year.
The only other character that comes close is the Red Heart and then they say there’s a “steeeeeep cliff after that” before you get to the third most used emoji, Rolling on the Floor Laughing. Smiling faces and hand-based emoji are also really popular, as are the hearts and plant-flower categories. On the flip side, the least popular category is flags and country flags are used the least, even though the Summer Olympics took place this year.
The top 10 most-used emoji of 2021 are:
😂 – Tears of Joy
❤️ – Red Heart
🤣 – Rolling on the Floor Laughing
👍 – Thumbs Up Sign
😭 – Loudly Crying Face
🙏 – Folded Hands (aka the prayer emoji)
😘 – Face Blowing a Kiss
🥰 – Smiling Face With Three Hearts
😍 – Smiling Face with Heart-Shaped Eyes
😊 – Smiling Face with Smiling Eyes