Wechat Emoji Meanings [8 Emojis Explained]

wechat emoji meaning and use

WeChatChina’s biggest social media app — has its own set of unique emojis that express different emotions and reactions. 

Some of those emojis, however, have very different (and surprising) meanings from what you might first expect.

To save marketers in the West from using emojis wrongly, here’s a quick breakdown of the top WeChat emojis and what they really mean. 

1. The ‘shy’ WeChat emoji

shy wechat emoji

WeChat emoji meaning: 

The shy emoji express humility and gratitude, which is an important part of Chinese culture. 

Examples of when it might be used:

This emoji could be used to:

  • Make a humble brag 
  • Ask for a favor (without appearing entitled) 
  • Celebrate oneself (without appearing over-confident) 

Commonly confused with:

Blush emojis, which can sometimes be used to express embarrassment. 

2. The ‘smile’ WeChat emoji 

smile wechat emoji

WeChat emoji meaning:

This emoji expresses politeness, but in a formal, less friendly way. In some contexts, it can also express sarcasm and/or ridicule. It’s not as friendly as you might first think!

Examples of when it might be used:

The smile emoji could be used to:

  • Be polite, without appearing too friendly 
  • Soften the blow of a negative/serious message 
  • Sarcastically dismiss someone

Commonly confused with:

Other, genuine smile emojis — you wouldn’t want to use this with a friend!

3. The ‘trick’ WeChat emoji 

trick wechat emoji

WeChat emoji meaning:

The trick emoji is a knowing grin that’s used as a way to recognize when something is funny and/or entertaining/interesting. It’s a fun way to say “oooh!”

Examples of when it might be used:

The trick emoji is the perfect way to express excitement about something, like an idea or new development. 

Commonly confused with:

Big grin emojis that are used to express laughter. The trick emoji shouldn’t be used in that way — it’s more about excitement and intrigue. 

4. The ‘fight’ WeChat emoji 

fight wechat emoji

WeChat emoji meaning:

The fight emoji, ironically, has nothing to do with fighting at all. It’s actually used to say thanks, or as a sign of respect in reference to the salute Chinese Kung Fu fighters do before they start fighting. 

Examples of when it might be used:

The fight emoji is used to: 

  • Genuinely thank someone 
  • Express respect/politeness to someone important/senior 
  • Show you value someone’s opinion 

Commonly confused with:

Expressing anger or volatility. Don’t use this emoji in the way you might use other fight-related emojis in the West.

5. The ‘scowl’ WeChat emoji 

scowl wechat emoji

WeChat emoji meaning: 

This emoji expresses shock and surprise towards something negative. 

Examples of when it might be used:

The scowl emoji is mostly used to respond to news you’re not happy about.

Commonly confused with:

All surprised or shocked reactions. Don’t fall into the trap of using this emoji as a go-to for conveying positive surprise or shock — it’s for negative reactions only! 

6. The ‘grimace’ WeChat emoji

grimace wechat emoji

WeChat emoji meaning:

This emoji shows genuine concern or regret about something. It’s not angry or volatile. 

Examples of when it might be used:

You can use this emoji to:

  • Say sorry to someone 
  • Politely say no to someone
  • Express awkwardness/nervousness/regret 
  • Break bad news 

Commonly confused with:

The Western grimacing face emoji. While both emojis can carry the same meaning in certain scenarios, the Western grimacing emoji can also be used to express disgust and disapproval, which this WeChat emoji does not convey.

7. The ‘waving goodbye’ WeChat emoji 

goodbye wechat emoji

WeChat emoji meaning:

There’s more to this emoji than first meets the eye. It’s not about politely saying goodbye, but actually rejecting someone/something in a dismissive and passive way.  

Examples of when it might be used:

This emoji is mostly used to:

  • Mock someone 
  • End a conversation
  • Discredit someone’s opinion 

Commonly confused with:

Goodbye emojis in the West. You should be careful using this emoji on WeChat — it’s passive and far from friendly. 

8. The ‘picking nose’ WeChat emoji 

picking nose wechat emoji

WeChat emoji meaning:

This emoji expresses disbelief or shock at hearing something that’s ‘stupid’ or doesn’t make much sense. 

Examples of when it might be used:

Use the picking nose emoji when you want to recognize something is nonsensical, or respond to a particularly brash statement. 

Commonly confused with: 

The sneeze emoji on iOS devices. Don’t confuse the two!

Now, go wild with those emojis!

Get in touch with us if you need a hand with your China marketing — our team of Chinese social media experts can create content for your WeChat Official Account so you don’t have to worry about making any faux pas.

AdChina.io has helped hundreds of brands reach the China market. To see how AdChina.io can help you get started with advertising on top channels hassle-free create a free account today.

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