Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Emoticons in Word.

Emoticons in Word

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 9, 2017)

Emoticons are those funny little faces people love to put in their e-mails. You know the type, made with colons, dashes, and other characters. For instance, :-) is an emoticon for a smiley face. (Look at it sideways and you see two eyes, a nose, and a smiling mouth.)

If you type an emoticon Word, it is automatically transformed into a "dingbat" character that shows the smiling face, frowning face, or neutral face. The following are the different emoticons and how they are converted:

Emoticon Equivalent Dingbat
:) smiling face
:-) smiling face
:( frowning face
:-( frowning face
:| neutral face
:-| neutral face

The actual conversion of the emoticons to their dingbat equivalents is done through the AutoCorrect feature of Word. If you don't want the conversion to take place, you can do the following:

  1. Display the Word Options dialog box. (In Word 2007 click the Office button and then click Word Options. In Word 2010 and Word 2013 display the File tab of the ribbon and then click Options.)
  2. Click Proofing at the left side of the screen.
  3. Click the AutoCorrect Options button. Word displays the AutoCorrect dialog box with the AutoCorrect tab selected. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The AutoCorrect tab of the AutoCorrect dialog box.

  5. In the list of replacements at the bottom of the dialog box, choose the emoticon you don't want converted. (Hint: All the emoticons are near the beginning of the replacement list.)
  6. Click the Delete button. The emoticon replacement is deleted.
  7. Repeat steps 4 and 5 for any other emoticons you want deleted.
  8. Click the OK button to close the AutoCorrect dialog box.
  9. Click the Cancel button to close the Word Options dialog box.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (6051) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Emoticons in Word.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Random Resetting of the Standard Toolbar

Excel allows you to easily customize what appears on its various toolbars. If you make customizations to the Standard ...

Discover More

Subtotals Option Grayed Out

The Subtotals option on the Data menu is normally available for adding or removing subtotals to data tables. If the ...

Discover More

Using AutoFiltering

Excel's AutoFilter tool is a great way to make a long list of items much more manageable. This tip explains how to set up ...

Discover More

Comprehensive VBA Guide Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is the language used for writing macros in all Office programs. This complete guide shows both professionals and novices how to master VBA in order to customize the entire Office suite for their needs. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2010 today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Two Keys with the Press of One

Sometimes it could be helpful to have Word substitute two characters for the one that you type, for instance to replace a ...

Discover More

Shortcut for AutoCorrect Dialog Box

There is no built-in keyboard shortcut that will display the AutoCorrect dialog box. This doesn't mean that there aren't ...

Discover More

Punctuation Marks that Don't End Sentences

Word tries its best to recognize when you've reached the end of a sentence and then helpfully capitalizes the first ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 6 - 5?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.