๐Ÿ˜‰ Wink Emoji: The Friendly And Suggestive Signs Of Blinking One Eye

Written by: Kaira
Modified: Jan 22, 2023

You probably used the 😉 Wink emoji before it became available in its animated form. It was commonly used to signal an okay aside from the 👌 OK Hand emoji. However, another common use for the wink falls on the flirtatious category. After all, we usually associate winks with either obvious or subtle hints of an attraction.

Most people wink to relay a signal or hidden information between individuals. However, its indecent or flirtatious meaning is the most common representation of the facial expression. On some occasions, the gesture becomes the signature pose of some celebrities or known personalities in media.

Despite being one of the most common facial expressions, not everyone can do the gesture. Aside from having hand dominance, people also display eye preference. With this, some people struggle to wink with one or both eyes. They usually end up blinking their eyes after every attempt. Plus, not all people who wink can pull it off.

The wink emoji proves its usefulness to those who struggle to wink. You don’t have to do the gesture in real life, thanks to emoji keyboards. However, not everyone is comfortable with receiving winks online or in real life. Why? Well, check out what we found out about the classic winking face emoji.


Wink Emoji Meaning: Friendly, Flirty, Or Something More?

winking face emoji

It’s understandable why the 😉 Winking Face emoji appears almost the same throughout different platforms. Like most animated emotions, the winking face emoji belongs with other yellow smileys. Since it’s commonly used, the winking icons can be normally found in the first few rows in emoji keyboards.

Out of all gestures and signals between individuals, a wink can mean so many things. It might relay flirtation, seduction, indecency, and so much more. In truth, the wink gives off a mysterious vibe that leaves people curious. Because of this, people who witness or receive winks are either repulsed or left wanting to know more.

Why are some women threatened by winks from men they bump into? Well, a majority of women experience the disgusting meaning of receiving winks. The seemingly harmless emoji can trigger a traumatizing encounter with a man who winks at her. This scenario also applies to the lecherous winking face emojis on women’s social media posts.

As an overall mysterious gesture, winking between individuals always depends on the context. It may become offensive when it comes from a group of strangers on the street. This type of wink usually follows the movement with a catcall or a whistle. Meanwhile, winking comes out as flirty or seductive if exchanged between two parties. Some might say this commonly happens in a bar or intimate gathering. Two people attracted to each other may use winking to signal a secret meeting. Others may also lock eyes and wink to communicate.


The Wink Emoji On Different Platforms

wink emoji on different platforms

Almost all platforms feature the wink emoji with the right eye closed and the left eye open. They also commonly incorporate the wink with other yellow smileys and emotions. It’s one of the emojis we use along with the smile, laugh, or cry emojis.

Apple, Twitter, and Samsung illustrated eyebrows in the yellow smiley of their respective winking face emojis. This further defines the wink gesture of the well-loved animated icon. Google showcases a similar design with the difference of only one eyebrow. The right eye of the platform’s version also seems to be a combination of a wink and a squint.

Facebook’s and Messenger’s rendition of the wink emoji stands out with its lack of eyebrows. Its mouth appears a lot closer to the closed eyes compared to other platforms. Because of this, some users mistake it for a smirk than a wink.


Winking In History And Cultures

Wink Image

Image from Adobe Stock

With Germanic origin, the word “wink” comes from the formation of three words. In Old English, the term “wincian” means “to close the eyes.” Secondly, the German word “winken” depicts the meaning “to wave.” Finally, the English word “wince” is commonly used to describe a shrinking movement caused by pain or distress. When combined, these three terms create “wink” even if they don’t exactly mean the same.

Several cultures ended up popularizing the wink for different reasons. Contrary to popular belief, the flirtatious meaning of winks came from Latin America. The gesture was considered the simplest way to convey’s one’s sexual interest to the receiver. For Western culture, people wink as signals for specific situations.

For countries like India, Australia, and some Asian nations, people take caution in exchanging winks. While in those nations, most communities consider this facial expression as vulgar, especially for unmarried couples. Plus, winking at strangers sometimes results in unexpected fights or brawls.


Winking Face Emoji Through The Years

Wink with Other Emoticons

Image from Adobe Stock

Before the emoji keyboard dominated platforms, we stuck with using symbols to depict winking in text messages. Like most emoticons, we relied on the different symbols, letters, and numbers that help show winking. Some used the simple ; ) to relay winking in messages. However, some people came up with more creative ways to wink without emojis. Here are some of the simple wink emoticons that people used back in the day:

; )


;- )




Another alternative for an emoji is a kaomoji. Like the classic symbol emoticons, these popular emoticons came from Japan. You can create different types of winks using Japanese characters and grammar punctuation. With this, you can emphasize the meaning of a wink in your message to the receiver. Here are a few examples of kaomoji winks:

(͡ ° ͜ʖ ͡ °)

( ゚o⌒)

(‐° ͜ ˇ‐)




Wink Or Eye Twitch?

Wink Emoji with Shushing Face

Image from Adobe Stock

Normally, people can control their winking. We consciously wink to relay a flirtatious or mysterious remark to friends or loved ones. Some people may struggle with winks and end up blinking instead. However, unexpected winks or blinks are very rare.

Anime or cartoons display eye twitches on characters to convey anger or annoyance. Animators or artists associate the gesture with annoyance because of its relation to stress. When it becomes unbearable, stressed people tend to get uncontrollable eye twitching. Common causes of this include insomnia, irritability, and excessive caffeine intake.

If you suffer from eye twitching, you can easily find natural remedies and suggestions online. You can also reduce uncontrollable eye twitching by practicing meditation, yoga, and light exercise. Plus, opting to drink tea instead of coffee lightens the stress you feel before the day starts. However, we still strongly suggest you seek help from your local doctor or ophthalmologist for proper diagnosis and treatment.


Tourette Syndrome Winking

Texting on Phone

Image from Adobe Stock

People diagnosed with Tourette syndrome or Tourette’s syndrome often wink or blink as part of their tics. The sudden eye movements happen along with other regular tics and at least one vocal tic. Despite the existence of other tic disorders, most people are more familiar with Tourette syndrome.

Thanks to the abundance of emojis, some people who grew up with a tics disorder use animated icons to the fullest. With this, they can somehow describe the uncontrollable movements they develop if they struggle to show them to others. Unfortunately, the usefulness of the smileys cannot all be positive. Some people use the icons as an avenue to further bully those with tics online.

You can avoid offending people with Tourette syndrome by not conversing about them with emojis. Out of respect, we suggest you refrain from using emojis that may resemble tics. Just stick to simple smileys and cute emojis when conversing with them or with people dear to them.


Why Cats And Dogs Wink

Winking Cat

Image from Adobe Stock

We may not have wink emojis for cats and dogs on platforms, but that doesn’t stop our pets from doing it. We humans normally wink as a form of short communication. However, we can’t help but gush over the cuteness of our pets whenever they wink.

Dogs become cuter when they suddenly wink at their owners. Most dog lovers believe that their pups adopted the behavior of humans. However, dogs winking at you means they respect you. Long eye contact for dogs often leads to aggression or challenge to fights. When your dog winks, it means that your canine submits to you.

Cat owners can’t help but rejoice when their felines wink. Most cats make that facial expression to relay a kiss. Because of this, animal lovers also call the cat wink as a “cat kiss.” You can also wink back at them to return the favor.


How The Winking Face Became Part Of Sexual Emojis

Winking Face with Tongue Emoji

Image from Adobe Stock

When you ask someone about sexual emojis, they usually respond with eggplant, peach, or banana icons. However, some may also add the winking face emoji due to its suggestive and flirtatious meaning. Despite not looking like most sensual emojis, people use the different wink emojis to convey messages with seductive intent. Additionally, people further emphasize their intentions by changing the winking face with the 😘 Face Blowing a Kiss emoji or the 😜 Winking Face with Tongue emoji.

Winking plays a big role in various flirtatious or seductive characters in films, shows, and other forms of media. Because of this, the facial expression became mainly associated with romantic intent. It played a big part in the usual reaction to winks from your secret crush or a random stranger. If you’re the receiving end of a wink, you either feel flattered or repulsed.

With today’s “new normal,” most people resort to texting pick-up lines. This method became a safer alternative instead of meeting with crushes or potential partners in person. With time on your side, you can compose various sets of emojis that can enhance your flirting skills.


Using The Winking Emoji On Dating Apps

Woman Winking with Partner

Image from Adobe Stock

When do winks imply innocence or seduction? We usually use the winking face emoji when exchanging messages between friends. It gives a more sensual or seductive vibe when you include flirty lines or other sexual emojis. With the COVID-19 pandemic at large, dating app developers needed to quickly adapt to keep their customers interested.

Due to social distancing protocols, people who met or matched on dating apps are forced to interact online. In the book titled “The COVID-19 Crisis: Social Perspectives,” experts compiled the effects of the recent crisis on dating apps and social media platforms. Despite the constraints, people online still found ways to date without any physical interaction.

During the peak of the lockdowns, famous dating apps like Grindr, Bumble, and Coffee Meets Bagel held online events that promoted dating advice and speed dating. Because of this, hopeless romantics found a useful online alternative to interacting with potential love interests. All this proves that you can meet new people and find love without leaving the comfort of your home. Here are a few examples of emoji sets you can use to start a budding romance or a steamy relationship:

😉💖 – I like you.

💑😉💞 or 👨‍❤️‍👨😉💞 or 👩‍❤️‍👩😉💞 – Let’s be a couple.

❤️🍑😉 – I like your butt.

😜🍑😉 – Your butt looks delicious.

📹📞😉 – Let’s do a video call.

📞👄👂💞😉 – I want to call and hear your voice.


Wink Emoji: More Than Just Flirting Or Teasing

signboard with emojis

Photo by Yasmin Dangor on Unsplash

Concluding the use of the winking face emoji focuses on its versatility across platforms. The facial expression holds such a great impact to the point that we still use it today. We commonly associate winking with flirtations or simple signals between friends. However, its multiple meanings through the years prove it’s more than just a response to eye contact.

The constant rise of feminism and equality encourages everyone to stop and think before voicing out opinions. People then begin to realize that winks don’t always mean teasing or flirting. The quick gesture depicts a mysterious meaning that leaves most women threatened or creeped out. It may also apply to winking faces seen on comments of a woman’s social media comments. The winks depict more lecherous intent, especially when the post celebrates a woman’s figure or appearance.

The innocence or sensuality of sharing winks with people has come a long way. Some people use the expression or emoji to define a person’s character. With such a rich background, it’s understandable why we use the winking face icon as much as other new famous emojis.