How to Use Facebook Reactions

Express the right emotion toward a friend's post

In early 2016, Mark Zuckerberg and the Facebook Newsroom announced the global rollout of Facebook Reactions, which allow users to react to posts with animated emoticons. Reactions are available to use on the Facebook website and mobile app.

Going Beyond the Like Button

Reactions come in the form of an expansive set of moving emoticons that help users express their emotions when interacting on Facebook. Reactions range from Like to Angry, with the latter providing a solution to the Facebook community's persistent request for a dislike button.

Familiarize Yourself With Facebook's Reactions

Facebook reactions

Facebook has seven reaction buttons:

Like: The beloved Like button is available to use on Facebook, despite getting a bit of a makeover since it's inception. In fact, the original Like button is still the first reaction on all posts.

Love: When you really like something, why not love it? According to Zuckerberg, the Love reaction was the most used reaction when the additional set of buttons were introduced.

Care: The Care reaction was introduced on April 17, 2020 to show an emotion of extra care and concern. Give a post or a person a virtual hug with the Care reaction, since it actually hugs a heart.

Haha: People share a lot of funny stuff on social media, and with a dedicated reaction for laughter on Facebook, you don't have to resort to adding a string of laughing emojis in the comments. You can, but you don't have to.

Wow: Any time that we're shocked and surprised about something, we want to make sure our friends feel just as shocked and surprised, so we share it on social media. When you don't quite know what to say about a post, use the Wow reaction.

Sad: When it comes to Facebook posting, users share both the good and the bad in their lives. You'll be able to make good use of the Sad reaction any time a post triggers your compassionate side.

Angry: People can't help but share controversial stories, situations, and events on social media. Express your dislike for posts that fit this category by using the Angry reaction.

On the Web: Hover Your Cursor Over the Like Button on Any Post

Facebook - hover over reactions

Here are the exact steps to using Facebook Reactions on Facebook.com.

  1. Pick out a post that you want to "react" to.
  2. The original Like icon is still below every post. To activate reactions, hover your mouse over the Like icon without clicking on it. A pop-up box of reactions will appear right above it.
  3. Click any one of the seven reactions.

Alternatively, you can click the original Like icon without hovering over it to like a post.

Once you've clicked a reaction, your reaction displays (only to you) below the post instead of the Like icon. You can always change your reaction by hovering over it again and selecting a different one.

To undo your reaction, click it. It will revert back to the original Like icon.

On the Facebook Mobile App, Hold Down the Like Icon on Any Post

Facebook - liking a post on mobile app

If you thought using Facebook reactions was fun on Facebook.com, wait until you select them on the Facebook mobile app!

To select a reaction on the app:

  1. Pick a post that you want to "react" to.
  2. Press and hold the Like icon to trigger the reactions to pop up.
  3. As soon as you see the pop-up box with the reactions, lift your finger, and tap the reaction of your choice.

Just like you can change your reaction on the Facebook website, you can also change it on the app: press your reaction until all reactions show again, and select a different one.

To undo your reaction, tap it. It will revert back to the original Like icon.

Click or Tap the Reaction Count to See a Complete Breakdown

Facebook - breakdown of reactions

Every post shows a collection of reactions, plus the total number of people who have reacted. To see a breakdown of the count for each reaction, click or tap the overall count. A pop-up box will appear with the total count for each reaction and a list of participating users.

Click the reaction of your choice to see all Facebook users who have reacted accordingly.