Anyone can submit a proposal for a new emoji. It's free, and details on how to do this are available on the Unicode Consortium website.
Proposals should indicate that an emoji (if approved) would be well used, is visually distinct, and cannot already be represented. Before proposing, first have a search of Emojipedia to check that your emoji idea doesn't already exist.
🚩 Note: The proposal submission process for 2022 is now open until July 31 2022.
Criteria and instructions for submissions are found on the Unicode Consortium website:
Some useful URLs for reference:
- 📋 Unicode Emoji requests (list of submitted proposals and their status)
- 📊 Top Emojipedia Requests 2019 (popular suggestions from Emojipedia readers)
- 🆕 2021 Emoji List (emojis approved for release in 2021 / 2022)
Images included within a proposal don't have to be created by the proposer, but if attaching example images from elsewhere they must first be in the public domain or licensed for non-commerical use.
Actual emoji designs as implemented on major operating systems or apps are each designed by their respective platform owners, and don't necessarily reflect or mirror the designs submitted in a proposal.