The 8 Best Journal Apps for 2018

These apps offer the best digital journaling features

An image of various gadgets sitting on a computer desk.

John Lamb / Getty Images

With the right journal app, you can make a journal or diary entry truly yours by adding images, tagging locations, setting reminders to write, enabling password protection, and so much more.

Here are the best journal and diary apps you can use both online and offline, either from a web browser or on a mobile device.

An image of the Diaro app on various devices.

 Photo © Pixel Crater Ltd.

Diario's powerful interface is great for journaling enthusiasts who love to stay organized and liven up their entries with a wide variety of visuals. You can even swipe between entries just like a real journal or diary.

What We Like:

  • The ability to attach an unlimited number of images to your entries.
  • You can search for entries by folder, tag, location date, or other helpful filters.

What We Don't Like:

  • You'll need to upgrade to Diaro Pro for an ad-free journaling experience, import/export functionality, and multilingual support.

Available on:

  • iOS
  • Android
  • Amazon
  • Web
A screenshot of the Journey app.

Whether you're keeping a dream journal, a gratitude journal, a work journal, or any other type of journal, Journey is simply one of the best apps out there. Its crisp, clean layout is a pleasure to use for crafting your journal entries so they suit your personal journaling style. 

What We Like:

What We Don't Like:

  • You'll have to upgrade to a recurring $3.99 monthly or $29.99 annual fee if you want access to more features.
  • You'll have to pay a separate fee for each different platform version if you plan to use the app on different platforms.

Available on:

  • Mac
  • Windows
  • iOS
  • Android 
  • Chrome
  • Web
A screenshot of the Penzu app on a laptop.

Many journal apps offer security and privacy features, but Penzu is one that excels at it. This great journal app keeps your entries 100% safe with double password protection and military-grade 256-bit AES encryption.

What We Like:

  • An incredibly secure journal for ultimate protection and privacy.
  • Fully customizable journal features for personalized journal covers, backgrounds, and font faces.
  • You can easily insert images between text in entries.

What We Don't Like:

  • You'll have to upgrade to a $4.99 a month plan or a $19.99 a year plan if you want access to its full offering of customization features.
  • Some users report issues with saving entries and the app crashing.

Available on:

  • iOS
  • Android 
  • Web
An image of the Day One app on various devices.

Similar to Journey, Day One features an interface that's clean, minimal and very pleasing to the eye. Despite its simple look, it packs all the features you'd want in a powerful journal app – including search, tags, maps, photos, and so much more.

What We Like:

  • You can create multiple journals if you upgrade to a premium account for $2.99 a month or $24.99 a year.
  • There's a nifty dark mode for writing in lower light.
  • You can take advantage of IFTTT integration for creating automatic journal entries.
  • It's finally available for Android. Previously, it was only available for iOS devices.

What We Don't Like:

  • It's inaccessible from a web browser.
  • There's a Mac app, but no options for PC users.

Available on:

  • Mac
  • iOS
  • Android
A screenshot of the Diary app in a YouTube video.

If you're looking for an app that makes it as quick, easy, and effortless as possible to start and keep a diary or journal, Diary has you covered. It's a simple, yet powerful journal app that combines an easy-to-use interface with more advanced features like password protection, cloud storage, reminders and more.

What We Like:

  • Fully customizable background colors, text, and fonts.
  • The ability to share diary/journal entries with friends via email, Facebook, Twitter, and other platforms.
  • You can insert emojis directly into your entries.

What We Don't Like:

  • Only available on Android and via the web. No iOS app.
  • Occasional pop-up ads with no premium version to upgrade to if you want to get rid of them.

Available on:

  • Android
  • Web
Two screenshots of the Daylio app for Android.

Not so much into writing, but want to find a super quick and easy way to record the things you experience in a day? Daylio is a micro-diary app that lets you simply pick your mood state and activities so you can spend more time doing things and less time writing.

What We Like:

  • Ideal for people who want to journal without having to write anything.
  • A smart interface and beautiful icons.
  • If you do want to write more, you can always add notes to your entries.

What We Don't Like:

  • No traditional diary/journal writing options for wordier entries.

Available on:

  • iOS
  • Android
An image of the Grid Diary app on a tablet and a smartphone.

Grid Diary puts a unique spin on journaling by displaying a series of different questions in a grid-style layout, essentially making it easier for you to keep a diary or journal. It has a built-in library of suggested prompts so you never get stuck with writer's block.

What We Like:

  • Inspirational questions and prompts to help give you ideas for what to journal about.
  • The freedom to pick what you want to write about and personalize journal entries with images, etc.

What We Don't Like:

  • Only available on iOS. No access via the web or from an Android device.
  • Features like password protection and cloud storage syncing are only available to Pro users for either a $1.99 monthly subscription or a $4.99 one-time purchase.

Available on:

  • iOS
Two screenshots of the Dyrii app for iOS.

Want to add more than just text to your journal entries? Dyrii lets you record audio and video, add drawings or sketches, make handwritten notes, automatically log the places you visit and even track your mood and health incidents.

What We Like:

  • Offers a truly premium journaling experience.
  • You can insert anything anywhere into your entry with its nifty inline editor – be it a photo, a video clip or anything else.

What We Don't Like:

  • Only available on iOS. No access via the web or from an Android device.
  • No free plan version and it's far more expensive than most apps at $9.99 from the iOS App Store and $39.99 from the Mac App Store.

Available on:

  • iOS