Top Five Best Emoji Ever

Autostraddle 5th B'day_Cats plus changes_Rory Midhani_640px (1)
We’re celebrating Autostraddle’s Fifth Birthday all month long by publishing a bunch of Top Fives. This is one of them!

5. The Eggplant

I’ve heard that some people (for example, the artist behind this “Drunk In Love” emoji music video) use The Eggplant euphemistically. I can see it coming in handy in this way. However, it’s always been my go-to for describing people or things I don’t like. Someone is being a jerk to your friend? That person is now Eggplant. Dreaded appointment with dentist/tax lawyer/landlord? Eggplant on Google calendar. Useful and relatively discreet.


4. SOON feat. Right Arrow

Stuck as it is in the strange and confusing “!?#” department, Soon feat. Right Arrow is critically underrated. It can be used to make plans, predict the future, and illustrate evolution (personal or scientific). Fridays around 4 pm I see it hovering over my work computer, pointing hopefully outdoors.


3. Tropical Fish

Like a real tropical fish, Tropical Fish is a calming presence. Use him to cool down a heated conversation, or help remind a sad friend of a brighter world. He’s also facing leftward so you can easily make him hold a magnifying glass, smoke a cigarette, or yell into a megaphone, all hilarious things that fishes can’t actually do.


2. Smiley Cyrus

Emoji designers were far ahead of their time when they invented Face With Stuck-Out Tongue And Winking Eye, which I have personally rechristened for obvious reasons. I strive for a life in which this emoji is the only one I ever need.


1. Rocket Ship

Rocket Ship has slowly but surely edged out Flamenco Lady as my go-to conduit for expressing pure joy. Just look at it, pointing up and right — to fresh unknown planets, new spiral galaxies, expanding multiverses of adventure. I love the fire in its belly. I love its sharp nose and its little window eye. Go forth, Rocket Ship! Show us the way.


Header Image by Rory Midhani

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Cara is a former contributing editor for Autostraddle and a current staff writer at Atlas Obscura. She lives in Somerville with her girlfriend, their roommate, and a cat who can flush the toilet, and is generally thinking about gender, sustainable biodiversity, and/or rock & roll music. You can follow her on twitter @cjgiaimo if you want.

Cara has written 113 articles for us.


  1. I can’t believe tongue-out ghost didn’t make this list. That ghost is my go-to for pretty much any situation. Good news from the family? Celebrate with a tongue-out ghost! Girlfriend mad? Is she still mad after a tongue-out ghost? Feeling drunk and a little mischievous? Send everyone a tongue-out ghost! He’s not just for explaining your halloween costume, yall.

  2. thank you for getting me through girl-being-a-jerk-to-me by calling her an eggplant, the universal symbol for something that seems like it should be good but just isn’t.

  3. lovestruck cat is the actual best. i’m also a fan of bows.

    smiley cyrus made me chuckle though.

  4. You guys? My girlfriend (and I) love emojis so much that she turned them into real life art. L

  5. The unamused emoji is my favorite and I’m always amazed how relevant it is in so many situations

  6. i’m forever a fan of your lists, you guys.
    (and will totally try to incorporate the eggplant into conversations more often..)

    well, my favorite combination of emojis by far is the exotic fish followed by that speedy cloud of dust, which makes it look like the fish is actually farting. makes me laugh every time. :D you should try it. it’s so so good. hah!

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