Now that the iOS 16 public beta is available, anyone with an eligible device can start exploring the new features for iPhone. But once you get past the major iOS 16 upgrades, like the new Lock Screen and editable text messages, you might find some fun — yet underrated — changes.
Take Memoji, for example. Apple’s avatars, which can be added to your contact information or sent in lieu of regular emojis in Messages, have a suite of new customization features in iOS 16. New hairstyles, headwear choices, nose shapes, lip colors and stickers are available in the latest software update to help your character look more like, well, you.
As it turns out, I hadn’t altered my Memoji in nearly two years. I distinctly remember adding a face mask to my avatar ahead of WWDC 2020, but I guess I never took a moment to update my virtual appearance based on changes in my physical appearance since. For example, I got new ear piercings and added highlights to my hair.
With World Emoji Day today (July 17), it seemed as good a time as ever to refresh my Memoji and check out the iOS 16 Memoji customizations.
iOS 16 — new Memoji customizations
Memoji gets 17 new or updated hairstyles in iOS 16, giving users a wider selection for replicating their ‘dos. There are new curly styles, as well as updates to tight curl styles, box braids and boxer braids. And if you’d prefer your avatar keeps its head covered, you can now do so with bonnet.
There are a selection of new noses and lip colors in iOS 16, too. The lip colors specifically introduce some added neutral choices.
Finally, you'll find six new Memoji stickers. Memoji stickers are basically the expressions or animations you want to convey with your avatar. It's also what lets your Memoji act more like a traditional emoji. The new stickers in iOS 16 are finger hearts, grace face, talk to the hand, dizzy birds, chef’s kiss and yawn.
I'm surprised I forgot how fun Memojis can be. The refreshed choices in iOS 16 might give me a reason to keep my character up to date with my appearance, letting more of myself be expressed with whoever I'm messaging with or giving my contact to.
Here's how to download the iOS 16 public beta and how to create your own Memoji so you can explore the new customizations and stickers in iOS 16.