How to Create Your Own Emoji With Custom Apps

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Create your own emojis on Imoji. Imojiapp / Imojiapp on Instagram

Want to make your own emoji? If you're tired of those same-old, same-old smileys, stickers and other emoticons you see in lots of texts and instant messages, it might be time to consider creating custom emojis.

But how do you make a new emoji? It isn't all that easy if you have to start from scratch.

 Several new apps have launched recently that are designed to let you make new emojis, your very own personalized versions of those smiley-face pictures that people love to insert into text messages.

Most are smartphone apps, and none is perfect, but they may be worth trying out if you are an emoji fan.

Two custom emoji apps, in particular, launched for iPhone users in the summer of 2014, MakeMoji and the Imojiapp. Both are fun and have social sharing features that make them resemble social networks.

1) Makemoji

This mobile app launched for iOS devices in August 2014 from a company called Emoticon Inc. It provides an image-editing tool that lets users create an image from basic shapes or photos, and then manipulate the image by adding or changing elements such as bushy eyebrows, a hat and so forth. It's a bit tricky to draw your own picture; it works by adding different elements into layers and then combining them.

Makemoji also aims to be a social network, offering sharing features similar to image social networks like Instagram. After you create your own emoji and give it a title or name, your custom picture goes into the Makemoji news feed where other users can see it.

It's also stored in your own profile area for others to see there, too.

Emojis created with Makemoji can be inserted directly into a text message created with Apple's iMessage, the native texting app that comes pre-installed on all iPhones. But it requires the user to launch the Makemoji app to insert the picture into the message; you can't just grab your icon from within the iMessage app, as you typically do with the regular emoji managed and regulated by the Unicode Consortium.

Those are pre-installed in a special digital emoji keyboard accessible with one click in iMessage. With your custom emojis created with MakeMoji, you have to fire up that app in order to copy the message over to your iMessage app

Makemoji in the iTunes store.

2) Imoji

The Imojiapp is another free app for the iPhone that launched in July 2014, and it's similar to Makemoji. The main difference is that Imoji's image-creation tools rely on existing photos or images, not drawings that you make, to create the initial image (Makemoji, by contrast, lets users start with a shape like a circle or square and add elements, in effect drawing their own picture.)

Imoji's tools allow users to grab an image anywhere on the web or their desktop, then cut it out from its background to make a standalone sticker, and paste it into a message. Imoji users at least initially seem to enjoy using the faces of celebrities and turning them into stickers. You can keep your emoji private or make them public and let other people use them.

Imojiapp in iTunes store.

Other Emoji Networks

Emojli is a forthcoming emoji-only social network announced in 2014 that is designed to let people communicate in only one format – you guessed it, emoji.

Its creators currently are accepting reservations for user names on its home page.

Read more in this  overview of Emojli.