Here are the ten most popular emoji of 2021 😂

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Swiftkey Emojis shown on Google Pixel 3 XL

Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

TL;DR

  • The Unicode Consortium has announced the most popular emoji of 2021.
  • The number one and number two emoji of the year are the same as in 2019, but the rest of the lineup sees some changes.
  • The UC also has a ton of other stats related to the global use of the Emoji system.

The Unicode Consortium is the not-for-profit organization responsible for digitizing the world’s languages. That means it is in charge of handling Emoji, a “language” that over 92% of the world’s population uses.

Today, the consortium announced the ten most popular emoji around the world for 2021. This is fun news each year, but this year is especially notable because the consortium did not do this announcement in 2020. So this is the first time since 2019 that we’ve been able to see this data.

Check out the top-ten (from left to right) below and how it compares to 2019:

2019: 😂 ❤️ 😍 🤣 😊 🙏 💕 😭 😘 👍

2021: 😂 ❤️ 🤣 👍 😭 🙏 😘 🥰 😍 😊

Interestingly, the number one most popular emoji of 2021 is the same as it was in 2019: 😂 face with tears of joy. According to the data, this emoji barely changed rank at all over the past two years.

Similarly, the second place emoji — ❤️ red heart — saw barely any usage change. The rest of the lineup, though, sees some shake-ups. Notably, 💕 two hearts was knocked from seventh place in 2019 to not even showing in the top ten at all in 2021. Meanwhile, 👍 thumbs up jumped from tenth place all the way to fourth.

Most popular emoji 2021: Even more data

Outside of the top-ten emoji of 2021, The Unicode Consortium published a ton of data related to the use of the Emoji system this year. You can see all the data here, but we’ve summed up some interesting tidbits for you below:

  • The most-used emoji related to clothing is 👑 crown.
  • For animals, the most popular emoji is 🦋 butterfly.
  • The various flower emoji (💐 🌹 🥀 🌺, etc.) dominate both the Animal and Nature categories. This is likely due to their broad appeal and multiple usage scenarios.
  • The least popular category of emoji is flags. The least popular subcategory is country flags. People just don’t care about flags!
  • Although it did not make the top ten this year, 🥺 pleading face jumped in rank from 97 to 14 between 2019 and 2021. It’s the little emoji that could!

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