99 Best Email Subject Lines of All Time


The email subject line is perhaps the most critical element of any email marketing campaign. For starters, it's the first thing a prospect sees. Also, it is where you can showcase your direct response copywriting abilities. If you don't capture your prospects' attention within the first few words of the email subject line, the rest of your content won't matter.

What makes an email subject line great? So how do you craft an email subject line that generates click-throughs, improves open rates, and ensures your emails end up in the inbox instead of the spam folder? We have analyzed over 1 million emails and came up with the most effective 99 subject lines.


The perfect cold email subject line can make your email stand out or make it disappear. It takes a lot of work to optimize your subject lines to perform better than your competitors. With SmartWriter, you can easily create engaging and eye-grabbing subject lines to get more opens and click-throughs.

Fear of Missing Out

It is practically impossible for people to resist the fear of missing out. So, you could use this fear in your email subject lines by adding an element of scarcity or urgency.

Also, the subject lines with words that imply time sensitivity–like urgent, breaking, important, or alert are proven to increase open rates.

Here are some of the subject lines that use the fear of missing out,

  1. Warby Parker -  Uh-oh, your prescription is expiring!
  2. JetBlue - You're missing out on points.
  3. Digital Marketer - [URGENT] You've got ONE DAY to watch this
  4. Digital Marketer - Your 7-figure plan goes bye-bye at midnight
  5. Digital Marketer - [WEEKEND ONLY] Get this NOW before it's gone
  6. Jersey Mike's Subs - Mary, Earn double points today only
  7. Guess - Tonight only: A denim lover's dream
  8. Violet Grey - There's Still Time To Save On These Exclusives
  9. ThinkGeek - Buy One Get One Free OR ELSE
  10. Third Love - Don't miss out on 30% off!

Creative Subject Lines

Get creative if you want to up your sales game. To grab the attention of the customers, you should build subject lines that are creative and attractive. Including emojis, capitalization, the customer's name are a few ways to write an innovative subject line.

Here are some of the subject lines that are creative and clever,

  1. Torrid - It's a plaid, plaid world
  2. Sock Fancy - You Doughn't Want to Miss Out on This Pair! 🍪 
  3. Lush - Flick here for vegan eyeliners ⚡
  4. Function of Beauty - So long, milk(shea)ke 👋
  5. Shinesty - Rum-pum-pum-pump up the holiday jams
  6. Recess - 10/10 would not wormhole again
  7. Poo~Pourri - Ready. Sit. GO! ✈️🚗🏖️💩
  8. ThinkGeek - A Sale of ❄ and 🔥

Funny Subject Lines

If your email subject line makes your subscribers giggle, then they will simply have to open it. Plus, have you ever read an email subject line that was funny, and you didn't read it?

Being entertaining requires more thought and creativity, but it might actually pay off in terms of your open rates.

Here are some of the examples of funny email subject lines,

  1. Happy Socks - How d'ya like your socks in the morning? 🍳 
  2. Sunski - It's finally (mostly) sunny!
  3. Chubbies - Call me Thigh Fieri 
  4. Huckberry - "Ahhhhhhh."—Your feet 
  5. Sweaty Betty - Does this come in black?
  6. Bonobos - SAAALE! Extra 40%! Sorry for yelling!
  7. Studio Neat - Great, another email!
  8. Patpat - Forget Your Troubles, Come On Get Matchy! 
  9. AYR - the fresh pants of bel-AYR
  10. Beardbrand - [True or False]: Your beard loves to lift, bro.

Promotional Subject Lines

Do you like freebies? Do you like to buy things when they are on sale?

When you are giving products away or selling something your customers would be interested in, stating that in your email subject line directly is a fantastic way to convince them to open the email and learn more.

Here are some of the subject lines that promote their brands with exclusive offers,

  1. L'Occitane - Beauty You've Had Your 👀 on, Now with $20 OFF!
  2. United by Blue - This is Not a Sale. It's a Celebration. 
  3. Kate Spade - Open to see our top picks of sale 
  4. Miss Selfridge - Stop EVERYTHING! Up to 50% off ALL Dresses 🚨👗
  5. Aerie - 50% off a bra that feels good. It's REAL. 
  6. Dollar Shave Club - Save money. Don't leave the couch. 
  7. Hollister - Your favorite jeans are 20% off 🙌 
  8. THE ICONIC - The sale's on SALE! 😱 
  9. Moo - This sale's too BIG for subject li–
  10. West elm - 💡 THIS SALE IS LIT 💡 20% off all lighting

Personal Subject Lines

Using a person's name in an email's subject line was once considered the be-all of personalization. But, now, it is not just the person's name in the subject. 

You need to talk to your subscribers like you have known them for years. Also, you can create a nickname for each unique reader to use in the subject lines. 

Here are some of the subject lines that are personalized for subscribers,

  1. Flat Tummy Co - 😏 Kevin – ready to move a few stubborn LBS?! 😏
  2. Vinomofo - Can't decide, Kevin? Get Shiraz & Co NEW mix! 
  3. ColourPop Cosmetics - Kevin, you don't want to miss this… 
  4. Fabletics - Hey Sarah, we picked these for you! 
  5. (Fenty Beauty) - Only the best for you, Sarah
  6. Fabletics -Sarah, this is so you and it's 70% off!
  7. Torrid - Hey Sarah, ready for some Disney magic?
  8. Joybird - We'd love your feedback, Sarah! 
  9. Brooklinen - Vanilla or Chocolate?
  10. Sam from The Hustle - I love you
  11. Jon Morrow - Quick favor?
  12. Guess - Sarah, check out these hand-picked looks

Curiosity Subject Lines

People have a natural desire for closure, and we do not like having gaps in our knowledge. You could leverage this desire for closure by leaving your email subject line open-ended so subscribers might be curious, like a cliffhanger that might only be satisfied by opening the email.

You can make the customers curious by asking a question, promising something interesting, or simply saying something that sounds strange or unusual.

Here are some of the examples of curiosity-inducing subject lines,

  1. Allbirds - Have You Seen Sheep Dance?
  2. Birchbox - You're Invited
  3. Frank and Oak - THIS is: High-performance ✅ sustainable ✅ already our best seller ✅
  4. Johnny Cupcakes - When life gives you cupcakes…
  5. Huckberry - It's Arrived.
  6. ESQIDO - Shhh… Don't tell anyone
  7. Glossier - You can't come in
  8. Crocs - They did WHAT with a pair of Crocs?
  9. Function of Beauty - Your hair care routine is missing something…
  10. Recess - They said it couldn't be done
  11. Away - What you've been waiting for 🌈
  12. Shinesty - You've never seen a suit this color…

Social Proof Subject Lines

A key characteristic of individuals is that we look to the behavior of others while making decisions.

You can leverage this in your subject lines by mentioning individual's success stories, familiar names or highlighting how many people are using a product or service.

Here are some of the subject lines that use social proof,

  1. MAC Cosmetics - Fans are getting REAL about new Studio Fix Stick 👀
  2. Framebridge -Don't just take our word for it.
  3. Birchbox - We've Heard Some Good Things… 😊 
  4. Morphe - Yeah, what they said
  5. Beauty Bay - Guess what Olivia Buckland is wearing? 👀🔥 
  6. Aerie - Crown jewel of sweatshirts.
  7. Origins - Find Out Why This Fave Is Sold Every 10 Secs… 
  8. Huckberry - "Want." — everyone
  9. Warby Parker - You might have some questions
  10. IGK - Rumor has it… 

Follow Up Subject Lines

Like most people, you might think of following up as something one does after a job interview or business meeting with a prospective buyer.

But that is not always the case.

Most online retailers are as good, sometimes better, than B2B companies at following up with potential buyers.

Take cart abandonment, for example, an issue that plagues online retailers. When most visitors leave their cart before checkout, there is enormous potential to regain lost sales via emails.

Here are some of the subject lines that follow-up with customers,

  1. Proven - Your Place in Line is Going, Going…
  2. Care/Of - Let's make a plan 
  3. Warby Parker - Whalen felt the connection 
  4. Y'OUR - Should you buy expensive skin care
  5. Fab - There must have been a mistake, you left this behind
  6. AYR - Just lookin out for you 🙂 
  7. Shinesty - You left your stuff at our place… 
  8. Too Faced - All You Have To Do Is Get What You Want 
  9. Tuft & Needle - You Should Sleep on Big Decisions. 
  10. Sock Fancy - Still thinking it over? Maybe this will help…
  11. The Kewl Shop - More about our Sweety Flared Bandage Dress
  12. Bath & Body Works - Trust your instincts. 
  13. Vinomofo - The 2nd rule of Vinomofo: never leave a wine behind.

Cart Abandonment Subject Lines

Retargeting emails are sent to shoppers when they fail to complete an action in your sales funnel. Cart Abandonment emails serve to bring your shoppers back to your sales process.

You can build effective retargeting subject lines by offering something to sweeten the deal or warning them that the product in their cart may go out of stock with just 1 item left in the store.

Here are some of the examples of Cart Abandonment email subject lines,

  1. AllSaints - There's still time!
  2. MAC Cosmetics - View Your Cart Now Before It Expires!
  3. Crate and Barrel - We've held your cart for a limited time only.
  4. ASICS Tiger - Get it before it's gone…
  5. Huckberry - Just a couple left…
  6. Sweaty Betty - Don't miss out!
  7. JRINK -Uh oh, your cart is about to sell out.
  8. Too Faced - "You're gonna miss me when I'm gone" -Your Basket
  9. Zalando - An item in your shopping cart is now on sale
  10. Fabletics - Kevin, item(s) in your cart are selling fast!


People prefer to be liked, accepted, and even admired by others. It is just a part of being human. That is why most of the clever subject lines use vanity to attract users. 

Here are some of the examples of email subject lines that leverage vanity,

  1. Sephora - Products the celebs are wearing
  2. Fabletics - Your Butt Will Look Great in These Workout Pants
  3. Rapha - Gift inspiration for the discerning cyclist
  4. Pop Physique - Get Ready. Keep the Pie Off Your Thighs Returns.


A great email subject line is essential for converting inbound leads into customers. If used correctly, an attention-grabbing subject line can get your emails opened and drive traffic to your website. Now that we have listed the best 99 email subject lines, it's your turn to go ahead and create clever subject lines to improve sales.

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