How Do Streaks Work On Snapchat?

Snapping back and forth forever.

by Lily Feinn and Emma Carey
Originally Published: 
A woman takes a selfie to keep her snapchat streak going. Here's how streaks work on snapchat and th...
yulkapopkova/E+/Getty Images

Do you end up snapping back and forth with one person more frequently than the rest of your buds? If Snapchat has rewarded you and your special friend's convos with a flame emoji, that means you, dear Snapper, are on a Snapchat streak (aka a Snapstreak). Though many Gen Zers follow the Snapchat streak rules almost religiously, the power of the almighty Snapstreak might be lost upon you. If so, here’s rule #1 of Snapstreaks: With great power, comes great responsibility.

Just like caring for a plant or building a relationship, maintaining a Snapstreak requires you to tend to it every day. To even start a Snapstreak, you need to consistently Snapchat a friend at least once every 24 hours for at least three days straight. Sound kind of pointless? Well, if you’re trying to cut down on screen time, then it very much is. But, if you’re someone who’s incentivized by gold star sticker-esque emoji rewards, you might just find yourself returning each day to send a Snap or two — even if it’s just a picture of your wall or the top of your head. (Rule #2: Just chatting doesn’t count.)

If you've seen the flame emoji (also known as the "hot" emoji) next to your friends' Snapchat names, that means that they are on a Snapchat Snapstreak — and you should feel free to congratulate them on their virtual achievement. Ultimately, the Snapstreak is the closest thing to a social game that the app has to offer, and the "prize" is an emoji signifying that you have a Snapchat BFF who cares about you enough to send you carefully filtered pics every dang day.

As the Snapchat Support page explains, you and your friend have to keep Snapping each other every 24 hours if you want to keep the Snapstreak alive and kickin'. So make sure you don't skip a day — otherwise, all of your hard work will be for naught. And once again, just chatting your friend doesn't contribute to the count.

What Do The Snapchat Streak Emojis Mean?

When you begin a Snapstreak, you might notice a number that appears next to the flame emoji. "The number next to the 🔥 tells you how many days you've been on a Snapstreak," Snapchat says on its Snapstreak page. "For example, if you have an '8' next to the 🔥 it means you both have Snapped (not chatted) back and forth with this friend for '8' days." To make things even more exciting, a little "100" emoji will show up next to your friend's name once you've been on a Snapstreak for 100 consecutive days. So as the numbers continue to climb, just sit back and relax and let all those satisfied feelings of accomplishment wash over you.

Provided both Snappers are committed, a long Snapstreak is actually a very achievable goal. And if you’re afraid you might forget, no worries! Snapchat will prompt you with an hourglass emoji signaling that your Snapstreak is about to expire. All you have to do to get back on track is send another Snap of literally anything.

To break it down: Choose a friend, lover, or relative and send them a Snap each day. They must reply with a Snap within 24 hours to keep that flame next to both your names. Boom! Easy! If you’re afraid of committing to a full-blown Snapstreak, that’s understandable. Ending a long Snapstreak can be pretty devastating, but as the old saying goes, "It's better to have Snapped and lost than never to have Snapped at all."

This article was originally published on