Dark mode is undoubtedly the best feature of macOS 10.14 Mojave. It makes working with computer far more pleasant end reduces eyes strain during the night work. Combine dark mode on macOS with Night Shift and you’ll get a very comfortable setup for your late shift. This article not only explains basics (like how to enable black theme on macOS), but also provides you with advanced tips on how to use a dark mode like a pro.
Enable Dark Mode on Mac
Let us begin with simple stuff (if you already know how to enable dark mode on Mac, feel free to skip to the next part). Turning on dark mode on macOS takes only four clicks.
- Open System Preferences using the menu bar, Launchpad, Spotlight, shortcut in dock or Siri. Whatever fits you better will work.
- Inside the System Preferences click on General.
- You need the very first option called Appearance. Select Dark or Light—anything that works better for you.
Dark mode on Mac does excellent job and looks awesome almost everywhere (we can’t help but wish there was dark mode on iPhone). Unfortunately, macOS has no built-in option for automatic switch between the two modes. A lot of users enjoy working with light mode during the day but enabling and disabling dark mode manually may be a bit annoying. Luckily for all of us there is one free app which takes care of this little problem.
How to Automatically Switch Between Dark Mode and Light Mode on macOS?
All you need is the app called Night Owl. It is not available on Mac App Store, so you need to download it from the official website. Good thing is that Night Owl is completely free and without any nasty ads. Also, this app is small, simple, lightweight, intuitive and quite feature-packed. Download it from the official website and install (we suppose you know how to install third-party apps on your Mac).
Here is what you need to know about Night Owl:
After being installed Night Owl icon appears in the menu bar above the screen. You can use its icon to quickly switch between dark mode on Mac and light mode. Just right-click it and you are done. Much better than diving deep (well, not so deep, but whatever) into the System Preferences. But the one-click switch is not the best feature of Night Owl.
Click on Night Owl icon at the menu bar and you will see that you have two options for automatic mode switch:
- Sunrise/Sunset. We think this one is the best. You will get dark mode enabled every time the sun is set and disabled every time the sun rises above the horizon of your location. Night Shift has the same feature. Very convenient.
- Scheduled. If you prefer having dark mode on macOS during the specific hours, not in between sunset and sunrise, use second option. Specify when light mode should be enabled and when dark mode should kick in. Again, you can do the same with Night Shift and have dark mode + Night Shift enabled simultaneously.
- Bonus: hotkey. If two options above are not enough for you, use hotkey combination to quickly switch between modes. Press Ctrl + Cmd to enable dark mode on Mac or switch back to light. If this key combination does not fit you well, you can select Shift + Ctrl + Option or Control + Option + Cmd from the settings.
There is another wonderful option inside the little Night Owl window. Take a look at the Always stay light list. It allows you to select apps which always stay in light mode. Very convenient if you don’t like how developers implemented dark theme. Do note that some apps (including some of the default) does not support theme switch or forced mode.
In the end, there is a little gear icon that allows you to customize Night Owl behavior. For example, turn off sound (Night Owl makes cure owl sound every time it changes mode), turn off or on autorun, and disable or customize hotkey.
As you see, Night Owl is a very small, but extremely powerful and convenient tool. You can forget about the manual switch between dark mode and light mode on macOS once you have set this app.