MacOS Emoji Support

View Emoji

macOS supports emoji on 10.7 Lion and above. 10.6 Snow Leopard and below did not have support for emoji.

Click here to view all of Apple's latest emoji designs for macOS.

App 10.10+ 10.9 10.8 10.7 10.6

Emoji Keyboard

OS X 10.9 Mavericks and above include a handy emoji-picker tool, while OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion and below included an option to add emoji to the Character Palette.

10.10+ 10.9 10.8 10.7 10.6


Follow these instructions to use emojis on a Mac. It’s quick, and built in.

These instructions created on macOS 10.12 Sierra, but also apply to macOS 10.13 High Sierra, macOS 10.14 Mojave, macOS 10.15 Catalina and macOS 11 Big Sur.

1. Go to any text field, then press the following keys at the same time:

  • Control ^
  • Command 
  • Space

Alternatively, this same feature is available under Edit > Emoji & Symbols

2. An emoji insertion palette will appear. Click any emoji to insert it at the location of your cursor.

3. If you want to see more emojis, either scroll up and down the list, or click another category listed at the bottom of the palette.

4. Tip: If you click-and-hold on some emojis, you get a choice of skin tone. Release on the skin tone of your choice:

Note: Only some emojis are enabled for diverse skin tones. This is mostly the human-looking characters. Families do not currently support skin tone modifiers, while the different 💏 Kiss💑 Couple with Heart, and 🧑‍🤝‍🧑 People Holding Hands are the only multi-person emojis to support skin tone options as of macOS 11.3.

Create a palette

To insert more than one emoji without the picker disappearing each time, you need to turn the picker into a palette.

Drag and drop any of the empty space in the emoji picker interface to create a floating emoji palette. This can be placed anywhere on your screen, and closed by clicking the X close button.


Emoji Categories

Here is a list of each category of emoji on macOS 11 Big Sur and above:

Smileys & People

Animals & Nature

Food & Drink


Travel & Places





Upcoming events

Show more

🎃 Halloween

Card Image

🔥 Guy Fawkes Emoji List

Card Image

🎖️ Veterans Day

Card Image

🪔 Diwali

Card Image

Latest news

Show more
What's New in Unicode 15.1 & Emoji 15.1

What's New in Unicode 15.1 & Emoji 15.1

The latest list of emoji recommendations drafted by the Unicode Consortium - Emoji 15.1 - has been formally approved. This means that 118 new emojis s...

JoyPixels 8.0 Emoji Changelog

JoyPixels 8.0 Emoji Changelog

JoyPixels have released version 8.0 of their freemium emoji set, introducing support for the 2022 emoji list including the 🩷 Pink Heart and 🫨 Shakin...

What’s New on the 10th Annual World Emoji Day

What’s New on the 10th Annual World Emoji Day

Happy World Emoji Day 2023 - our 10th annual World Emoji Day celebration and Emojipedia 10th birthday! 🌎📅🥳 Here's a quick rundown of what's been h...