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Get Most Out of Slack Emojis with These Top 8 Tips and Tricks

What would conversations be like if there were no emojis? Emojis add fun to conversations and even make boring chats interesting by providing emotional touch to messages that are otherwise missing in digital communication.

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Slack is a productivity tool, and one may think it wouldn’t have much to do with emojis. However, that’s where many underestimate its prowess. Slack has so many features for emojis that you might be surprised by the end of the post. I feel that it has better emoji features than WhatsApp.
Without keeping you waiting any longer, let’s dive deep into the Slack emoji tips and tricks.
Let the fun begin.

1. Add Emoji to Slack Name

If you are new to Slack or recently joined a Workplace that uses it, you must have seen some of your team members have emoji next to their name. Want to do the same? Well, you can do that with the help of Slack Status.
Here are the steps.


Step 1: On your computer, click on your name in the top-left corner. From the menu, select Edit Status.

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Step 2: From the pop-up window, tap on the emoji and select the emoji of your choice. The chosen emoji will appear next to your name.
Note: Use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + Shift + Y to open the Edit Status box.

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Mobile Apps

Step 1: Open the Slack app on your phone and tap on the three-dot icon at the top-right corner. From the menu select, Edit Status.

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Step 2: Tap on the emoji on the right side of the Status and select your preferred emoji.

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2. Add and Remove Emoji Reactions

I’m sure you are well-versed with emoji reactions on the Facebook Messenger. You can do the same on Slack as well. The only difference is you aren’t limited to a couple of emojis, but you can use any Slack emoji with the help of Emoji reaction feature.
Of course, emoji reactions aren’t always used to end conversations, they are, in fact, a fun way to interact with your co-workers. The emoji reactions will appear below the message. You can also use this feature to conduct polls where you assign an emoji to each option and ask others to vote.
To add a reaction to any message on a computer, hover over the message and click on the Add reaction button. Then select the emoji of your choice.

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On mobile apps, tap and hold on the message. Then from the pop-up menu, select Add reaction and choose an emoji.

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You can add multiple emoji reactions to a single message. The maximum number of emoji reactions that you can add to any message is 23.

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To remove a reaction, tap (mobile apps) or click (computer) on the emoji reaction that you have added. Your reactions appear in blue.

3. Add Emoji Using Shortcuts

While Slack has provided the Emoji Search feature, it’s a two-step process to access it. To add emojis quickly to your conversations, you can use keywords or shortcuts. These keywords are the emoji alias that defines them.
To do so, type : (colon) followed by the first few letters of the emoji. An autocomplete menu will appear. Select the emoji that you want to use. Suppose you want to add rolling eyes emoji, type : (colon) followed by the word eye. You will get all the relevant results. Tap or click to select the emoji.

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Note: You need to enter at least two characters to bring up emoji suggestion tray.
This feature is available on PC and mobile apps both. Interestingly, you can use this technique of standard emoji codes to find emojis on WhatsApp web as well.

4. Manually Add Emoji Alias

Sometimes our favorite emojis don’t have an alias which is easy to remember. Even while using the keyboard shortcut, it becomes difficult to use these emojis quickly.
For such emojis, you can manually assign an alias that you can remember. You can create an emoji alias from the desktop. However, you can use it in mobile apps as well.
Here are the steps:
Step 1: Open Slack on your PC and click on your Workspace name present in the top-left corner. From the menu, select Customize Slack. Slack will redirect you to its emoji customization web page.

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Step 2: On the customization page, click on Add Alias button followed by Choose Emoji.

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Step 3: Select the emoji for which you want to add an alias. Then enter the emoji name in the Enter an alias box. Finally, hit Save.

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Note: Sometimes Workspace owners restrict this feature. Meaning, only the admin can enter an alias. If that’s the case, you need to contact the admin.

5. Choose Default Skin Tone

Slack has this interesting feature where you can select a default skin tone for all emojis. It’s quite annoying in other apps like WhatsApp where you need to change the skin tone separately for each emoji.


To set a default tone on the computer, tap on the emoji icon next to the typing area. Then from the popup, tap on the hand icon at the bottom-right corner and select the skin tone.

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Pro Tip: To change the skin tone for a single emoji, enter the emoji in the typing area and then click on it to cycle between the variations.


Step 1: Tap on the three-dot icon at the top-right corner and select Settings from the menu.

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Step 2: Under Settings, tap on Advanced.

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Step 3: Tap on Emoji Deluxe and select your preferred skin tone.

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On iPhone, simply tap and hold any emoji. Then select the preferred skin color choice.

6. Turn off Big Emojis

By default, when you send emojis on Slack, they will appear slightly larger. Slack calls these emojis Jumbomojis.

In case you don’t like those large emojis, you can switch back to the normal ones. To do so, follow these steps:
Step 1: Open Slack on a computer and click on the Workspace name. From the menu, select Preferences.

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Step 2: Under Preferences, go to Messages & Media.

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Step 3: Scroll down and uncheck the box next to Show Jumbomoji. Click the cross button at the top-right corner to go back.

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7. Use Emoticons Instead of Emojis

By default, when you enter the common emoticons, Slack will automatically change them to an equivalent emoji. For instance, if you type 🙂 in Slack, it will be changed to a smiling emoji.
In case you don’t like this behavior, you can turn it off in the Settings. To do so, follow the steps 1-2 for big emoji, i.e., go to Slack Preferences > Messages & Media. Here, scroll down and uncheck the box next to Convert my typed emoticons to emojis.

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8. Append Shrug to Messages

Slack knows that a lot of us tend to use a shrug even in official conversations. And that’s why they have provided an easy way to add it to our messages.
To do so, type /shrug in Slack typing area followed by your message. Abracadabra! The shrug emoticon ¯_(ツ)_/¯will appear at the end of the message when you send it.

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9. Add Custom Emojis

One of the coolest things about Slack emojis is that you can add your own emojis as well. If you like an emoji from some other app or just a random image that you think would make a great emoji, you can add it to your Workspace.
To do so, follow the steps:
Step 1: Find the emoji that you want to add to Slack. You will find some great emojis at Emojipacks, Emoticonr, Slackemoji, Revelry, and Emojipedia. Right-click on the image and save it to your computer.
Step 2: Open Slack and click on the Emoji icon. Click on the Slack emoji tab.

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Sep 3: Scroll down and click on Add custom emoji here. Slack will redirect you to your Workspace customization page.

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Step 4: Click on Add Custom Emoji.

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Step 5: In the pop-up window, click on Upload Image and navigate to the emoji that you want to add. Give it a name which will be its shortcut code. Hit Save.

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The custom emojis will be available under the Slack tab in emojis. You can access these custom emojis on a mobile and a computer.

Emoji > Text

Though Slack is meant for productivity and team communication, emojis can lighten the mood and awkward conversations. Thankfully, Slack has great features for emojis. It’s no surprise that some people find it easier to communicate using emojis in their text than without it. Even though GIFs also make conversations exciting, emojis are taking over the world.

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