We Suggest Some Ideas For Those Hitherto Useless Emojis

After all, who knows what to do with those dancing whales?


by Sophie Wilkinson |
Published on

So much of our lives are spent sending friends, family, lovers and frenemies texts/emails/all the rest rather than actually speaking these days. But the short, sharp nature of texting means meanings can be conflated, reactions can be underwhelming and it can be so difficult to work out what someone else really means by “Yes coming home soon. c u.” This is where emojis come into their own. And now there's actual proof they work.

A study in the latest issue of Social Neuroscience "the metacommunicative pictorial representations of a facial expression" are now so commonly used, we respond to them in the same way we would a human face bearing that expression. In other words, when you send someone a winky face emoji, it gives them the same buzz that you actually winking at them in real life would do.

Which is great – but also leaves us thinking it's very important to make sure you're sending the right meaning with your emoji. And, with reams and reams of random emoji to choose from, it’s not always easy to decipher the useful from the useless. I mean, how is there an emoji for a hospital with a little heart over it, but no emoji for a sandwich?!

As such, we’ve decided to decipher what those weird emoji actually – or could – mean, and tell you how to get the best out of them.

Party bra


It's that feeling you get on a Friday night when you’ve emerged from a nap and done whatever you do to feel totally ready for a night out. You feel really sexy and sassy and you know tonight’s going to be good without even having any expectations of what’s going to happen. You’re feeling totally party bra.

The ciggie


Back in the old days, ‘snout’ meant ‘cigarette.' But no normal cigarette. A cheeky one, a stolen moment behind the bike sheds. Use it when you want to get away from work/an awkward conversation in a bar with someone you’d rather avoid forever than make small-talk with. Makes total sense when you’re near someone – a boss, that awful person who’s accosted you – who might be able to peer over at your phone.

The period flag


No offence Japan – and thanks for making the people who made emoji and chicken katsu curry, but we’re not going to use your flag in our everyday parlance. Except, however, if we want a brief way of explaining to our mates/boyfriend/mum/employer, we’re on our period.

The dickface


If someone’s being a bit of a dick, you can tell them gently with this phallic-nosed mask thingy.

Sassy pink ladies


If you say something particularly sassy, or a bit snarky, these are the emoji to accompany it. Use any of these Emoji to convey that Mean Girls classic: ‘On Wednesdays, we wear pink.’ Apart from the pink lady putting her hand up in the air to ask a question. She’s the desperate one.

All the coloured hearts


Even though we’ve got a lot of love for a lot of things, how can we make use of a whopping five different coloured hearts?

If you’re a bit too yellow-bellied, nervous or cowardly to admit that you like something but you totally do, use the yellow heart. For instance if you’ve spent the entire Sunday eating Domino’s and watching back-to-back episodes of LA Ink. If you’re feeling pretty melancholy and sad, use the blue heart, whereas the purple heart works if you’re feeling a bit frisky and naughty. The green heart, most obviously, is for when you love someone or something but with an overbearing feeling of severe envy. You might think you’d never need it, but for as long as Mila Kunis has a face, it’ll apply.

All the other hearts


All of these are just different ways of explaining that you’re totally smitten. Apart from the vibrating one, which implies some sort of hungover palpitation.

The ‘give a f**k’ whales


Look at all the f**ks these whales are giving. None.

The prickly-legged cactus


If you can’t have sex tonight because you haven’t shaved your legs/armpit/wherever else.

The old-school cuss


Next time someone someone does/says something totally old hat, show them the fax/pager/telephone/camcorder/CD. Also, use for when they ask you if you’ve heard that remix that’s been doing the rounds for the past five months, informs you of gossip that’s older than the corn laws or decides to show you a wacky Harlem Shake/singing goat video.



Use if you’re either a) replying to someone who’s been sickeningly twee or b) just hungry for a cupcake.

Follow Sophie on Twitter @sophwilkinson

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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