How to Change App Icon Aesthetic On iOS

Posted on March 24, 2024 | Updated on April 18, 2024

If you’re wondering how to create custom app icon aesthetics and designs on iOS, this guide will show you how in just a few steps. In the past, Android used to be the go-to mobile OS for people who want to customize their phone’s home screen, but this feature is available on iOS now, too. 

Any iPhone running iOS 14 or later can use custom app icons and widgets, so you can create a unique aesthetic for your phone. Here’s how to change your app icons on iOS in three steps, plus one alternative method. 

1. Download the Shortcuts App

If you want to learn how to change app icon aesthetics on your iPhone, you will first need to make sure you have Apple’s Shortcuts app installed. For most users, this app should already be on your phone by default as long as you’re running iOS 14 or above. However, it is possible to delete it. So, if you did, you’ll just need to go to the App Store and download it to your phone again, which should be completely free. 

2. Choose a New App Icon

Once you have the shortcuts app installed, decide which app or apps you want to change your icons for. If you want to change your whole app icon aesthetic, you’ll probably want to change every app on your home screen. 

Whether you’re only changing the icon for one app or all of them, the next step is to find a new icon for each app. You can find tons of free icons on Google Images and Pinterest for most popular apps. Simply download the images you want to use for new app icons onto your iPhone and go back to the Shortcuts app. 

3. Create a New Shortcut

The last step to learning how to change app icon aesthetics is the most complicated, but still fairly easy. Open the Shortcuts app and select the + icon in the top right corner. This will open a page to create a new shortcut. In this page, select the option for “Open App”. This will allow you to create a shortcut that opens an app for you, basically like a homemade app icon. 

Next, tap on the word “App”, which should be in a light blue bubble next to the word “Open.” This will open a little pop up where you can select the app you want to make a new icon for. 

Next, select the share button in the toolbar at the bottom of your screen (it looks like a box with an arrow at the top). In the sharing options, select “Add to Home Screen.” This will open up one final window showing a preview of your new icon. 

Below the preview is a space for you to finish editing the icon. In that box, tap the default shortcut icon to change it and select your custom icon from your images. Finally, type in the name of the app for the shortcut’s name and tap “Add” in the top right corner to add the icon to your home screen. 

Repeat this process for all of the apps you want to change. If you want to add a little extra variety to your icons aesthetic, you can also use the Shortcuts app to add widgets to your home screen. These come in a bunch of different shapes and sizes, which is great for breaking up the monotony of the standard iOS home screen layout. 

Alternative: Download a Custom Icons App

The Shortcuts app offers a way to customize your app icons using built-in tools on iOS, but it can be a little complicated. So, if you’re wondering how to change app icon aesthetics without using the Shortcuts app, you can also try downloading a custom icons app. 

There are a ton of great apps on the App Store that can automate the process of customizing your app icons. They usually have custom app aesthetics ready to go that you can select and apply to your device. This is a great option if you want to change all of your app icons since custom icons apps will usually do every app for you (when possible – some less popular apps may not be included by default). 

The only downside to using custom icons apps is that they aren’t always free. They are typically free to download and have at least a few free icons or themes to choose from. However, most of these apps change a fee or subscription for premium themes or icon packs. So, there is a chance that you might need to pay for a set of icons you like if you decide to use one of these apps instead of customizing each icon through the Shortcuts app. 

If using a custom icons app sounds like the right option for you, there are several top apps worth checking out, including Themify, WidgetBox, Aesthetic Kit and Brass. All have a combination of free options and premium options for a monthly subscription. Some apps, like Aesthetic Kit, will also let you customize the look of your keyboard as well as your app icons. 

How to Change App Icon Aesthetic on iOS

Learning how to change an app icon aesthetic or design on iOS 14 or above is easy. You can do it through either Apple’s built-in Shortcuts app or through a third-party custom icons app. The Shortcuts app is easier if you just want to customize a few app icons. A custom icons app is usually the easier option if you want to change the icons for all of your apps. 

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