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17 custom Slack emoji we use every day at Zapier

Here are the custom emoji every team should add to their Slack.

By Jessica Lau · September 12, 2023
Logo icon for Slack.

Every workplace has a unique language. At Zapier, ours is mostly emoji reactions—or reacji, as Slack calls them. 

As a fully-remote company, reacji allow us to quickly respond to messages without creating unnecessarily long threads with "I agree" and "aww" (for dog photos, obviously). And unlike threaded responses, when you use a reacji, only the person who posted the message you're reacting to gets notified. 

At Zapier, we've created thousands of custom Slack emoji to speed up communication. We use them so often, in fact, that it blows my mind that none of the major chat apps come with them by default. 

In no particular order, here are 17 of our team's go-to Slack emoji—you can download them all here

Make decisions faster with a yes or no Slack emoji 

There are a few ways you can poll your team in Slack. But if all you want is a quick "yes" or "no" to a question, our Y and N emoji get the job done. 

Slack message with "no" and animated "lol" custom Slack emoji reactions.

Depending on the question, your teammates may answer with more context in the thread. Or, as in the example above, they'll add extra reacji to make sure you understand how silly your question was in the first place. 

Slack emoji to upvote ideas

You know when someone pitches a good idea in Slack, and you nod your head while reading it? Yeah, no one can see that. If you want to chime in that you agree with something without actually saying as much, we have a bunch of custom Slack emoji for the occasion.

One, called this, is an animated arrow pointing up at the message.  

Slack message with multiple "this" custom Slack emoji reactions.

Of course, there's a built-in Slack emoji that communicates a similar idea: the heavy plus sign (➕). For us, this didn't represent enough shades of agreement, so we added a thicker version—a really heavy plus sign emoji. 

Slack message with the really heavy plus sign custom Slack emoji reaction.

People used the heavier plus sign to express even stronger agreement. But again, it eventually wasn't enough. So we added a plus sign that got so big it became a square emoji. 

Slack message with the plus sign so heavy it became a square custom Slack emoji reaction.

Agreement beyond that point is a plus sign so heavy it became a black hole emoji. 

Slack message with the plus sign so heavy it became a black hole custom Slack emoji reaction.

These started as jokes, obviously, but over time, they became known symbols to express varying levels of agreement. 

Slack emoji to downvote ideas

Sometimes an idea is bad. We shut those down using a red X emoji.

Slack message with a red X custom Slack emoji reaction.

Slack emoji to say thank you and you're welcome

There's no standard emoji for saying thank you. Some use the pray emoji 🙏 as a way to imply thank you, but this use is ambiguous at best and may make people feel uncomfortable at worst. 

That's why we have a thanks emoji.  

Slack message with a thanks custom Slack emoji reaction.

Sure, it's technically the logo of a company famous for creating an unstable economic bubble in the '90s, but we use it mostly because the letters T and Y are in there. If that weirds you out like it did for me at first, we also have a non-heart version that isn't related to Beanie Babies at all. 

Slack message with a thank you custom Slack emoji reaction.

At some point, someone added a you're welcome emoji. Probably because reacting to a Thank you message with a thumbs up can be misinterpreted as passive-aggressive

Slack message with a you're welcome custom Slack emoji reaction.

Slack emoji to acknowledge a teammate going through a tough time

When your teammate's feeling under the weather or going through a difficult time, it can be tricky to find the right words to comfort them. If you still want to express that you're thinking of them, we have a few emoji for that. 

Bear hug 

Depending on your relationship with your coworker, a hug emoji may be the right call. 

Slack message with a hug custom Slack emoji reaction.

It's cute, it's harmless, and it gets a thoughtful sentiment across in a single click. 

Feel better 

Headaches, a sudden cold, a sprained ankle—these are all ripe for a feel better emoji. 

Slack message with a feel better custom Slack emoji reaction.

Slack emoji for when a message leaves you perplexed 

At Zapier, Slack conversations aren't just for work. Random news and pop culture moments that make you question humanity also make their way into our feeds. In those moments, the only appropriate reaction is the what in tarnation emoji.

Slack message with the what in tarnation custom Slack emoji reaction.

Slack emoji to laugh out loud 

While the cry-laughing emoji seems straightforward—"I'm laughing so hard, I'm crying"—it's not. To avoid any confusion, we use explicit laugh-out-loud emoji. 

There's the static lol emoji. 

Slack message with a static LOL custom Slack emoji reaction.

Then there's the animated lol emoji for when you want to really emphasize how hard you're laughing. 

Slack message with the animated LOL custom Slack emoji reaction.

Bonus: bye 

I've seen teammates use the red X emoji to indicate when a message accidentally ended up in the wrong channel or doesn't require a response.

Slack message with a red X custom Slack emoji reaction.

But I think a much more fun way to communicate this is with the animated bye emoji. 

Slack message with the animated bye custom Slack emoji reaction.

You can also use it when a teammate gives you a heads-up about their upcoming vacation. Or when someone posted a question only to answer their own question seconds later. The possibilities are endless. 

Find messages faster in Slack  

Need to quickly find a message in Slack, but the only detail you can remember is that you reacted to it with a pony saluting emoji? Good news: you can filter Slack messages based on reacji. 

Enter has::[name of emoji]: in the Slack search bar—in this case, has::salute:—and you'll get a list of every message with that reacji. If you remember other details, like what channel the message was posted in or who posted the message you reacted to, you can filter for those details to narrow your search. 

Slack search results for a custom Slack emoji reaction.

Automate Slack emoji 

Emoji were made to be fun—and they are. But they do more than just add razzle-dazzle to your conversation. You can use Slack's Workflow Builder to launch workflows using emoji. Or, with Zapier, you can connect Slack to thousands of your other go-to apps. That way, you can use Slack emoji to automatically do things like add a new item to your to-do list or add teammates to a calendar event. Learn more about how to automate Slack emoji, or get started with one of these workflows. 

To get started with a Zap template—what we call our pre-made workflows—just click on the button. It only takes a few minutes to set up. You can read more about setting up Zaps here.

Create Trello cards from new Slack reactions

Create Trello cards from new Slack reactions
  • Slack logo
  • Trello logo
Slack + Trello

Related reading: 

This article was originally published in March 2021 by Justin Pot. The most recent update was in September 2023.

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A Zap with the trigger 'When I get a new lead from Facebook,' and the action 'Notify my team in Slack'