πŸ“– Glossary

List of terms commonly used in emoji character names. Many of the terms listed on this page pre-date emoji, and were used in the naming of Unicode glyphs when presented in black and white.

Pre-emoji terms can often be disregarded when it comes to emoji display.


When describing pre-emoji Unicode symbols, white in a character names refers to the symbol being hollow/outlined.

Example: ☺️ White Smiling Face does not refer to the ethnicity of the character, but instead means that when shown in black and white it is drawn with outlines.


When describing pre-emoji Unicode symbols, black in a character names refers to the symbol being solid/filled in.

Example: β˜€οΈ Black Sun With Rays refers to the appearance of this symbol in black and white, where the sun image is solid (filled in).


When describing pre-emoji Unicode symbols, heavy in a character names refers to the symbol being thick / bold.

Example: βœ”️ Heavy Check Mark

❀️ Heavy Black Heart can be interpreted as just "heart" when shown as emoji. Given this, it is displayed in red. A separate emoji for πŸ–€ Black Heart exists, which is intended to be black, as it was approved in a post-emoji world.


Index finger. The first finger next to the thumb.

Example: πŸ€ž Hand With Index And Middle Fingers Crossed

CJK Unified

Chinese, Japanese and Korean.

Example: πŸˆΉ Squared CJK Unified Ideograph-5272

Emoji Presentation

A colorful, cartoon-like appearance. By definition, all emoji characters in the Unicode Standard support emoji presentation.

Example: ✌️ Victory Hand with emoji presentation

Text Presentation

A black and white glyph or pictograph. Some emojis support both a text and emoji presentation. Newer emojis generally only have an emoji presentation available.

Example: βœŒοΈŽ Victory Hand with text presentation

Zero Width Joiner

A Unicode character that joins two or more emojis together to create an Emoji ZWJ Sequence.

Example: 🏳️‍🌈 Rainbow Flag is created by joining  πŸ³ Waving White Flag and 🌈 Rainbow using a zero width joiner