How to Change the Color of Your Apps on Android

Customize your Android's color palette

What to Know

  • Turn on Themed icons and pick a solid or wallpaper-based color.
  • Access those options here: Settings > Wallpaper & style.
  • A third-party app with icon packs provides the greatest flexibility.

This article details your options for changing the color and icons of your Android apps.

The instructions in this article were created using a Google Pixel running Android 12, so the options available to you will differ if you're using a phone from a different company or one with an older operating system.

How Do I Change the Color of My Apps on My Phone?

By default, app icons on some Android phones, like the Pixel, are essentially unchangeable, both the color and the actual icon. Spotify, for example, is green and black, and there's no easy way to change that.

There are, however, some cases where the app lets you modify the icon from a selection of options. Or, the app has closer ties to your phone's settings than other apps, so if you change the color setting on your phone, the app color and icon style will change, too.

If all else fails, third-party apps can take care of the whole process for you through icon packs. You can modify the app's icon color and entire icon graphic that way.

Here are the Google-approved options for changing the color of an app icon:

Use Themed Icons

One way to quickly change app icon colors is to use Themed icons. But there's a catch: Not every icon will change—only Google-provided ones like Chrome, YouTube, Camera, Phone, Messages, Play Store, Gmail, etc.

Go to Settings > Wallpaper & style > Themed icons and select what you'd like to use.

Android 12 themed icons toggle before and after

The icon style you end up with depends on the colors used in your wallpaper (see below) and if the Dark theme is on.

Turn on Wallpaper Colors

Themed icons work as-is, so you can turn it on and forget about it. Or, to work in a bit of customization, you can manipulate the app colors through two sets of color options: Wallpaper colors and Basic colors.

For example, if you want those Google apps to be purple, you can pick that color from Settings > Wallpaper & style > Basic colors. If you want the app icon colors to be balanced against the wallpaper, open Settings > Wallpaper & style > Wallpaper colors and pick one of those color combinations (the combos you see there change depending on the wallpaper you're using).

Wallpaper and style Android settings

Those color styles also apply to folder backgrounds, the lock screen, and other places. They change the color of Google's app icons because they've included their apps as part of the set to which the color setting applies. They may expand the option to third-party developers in the future so that your other apps will change color too.

How Do You Change App Icons on Android?

Changing app colors is also possible by simply changing the whole app icon. The only built-in method for doing that is to follow the directions above. The color palette you pick, the wallpaper you're using, and whether the dark theme and themed icons options are on influence how some of your apps appear.

But what if you want to pick a different app icon, maybe one for a non-Google app? There aren't icon packs in the phone's settings that you can cycle through, nor is there an approved way to swap out one icon for one of your choosing.

However, the app developer will include an app icon customization option in the app's settings in some rare cases. One example is the DuckDuckGo browser in the Google Play store. A screen called App Icon is in that app's settings, which has several options. It doesn't matter what your wallpaper color is or what other toggle you enabled in your phone's settings; this app's icon is determined by what you decide in its settings.

DuckDuckGo browser app settings and app icon list

If the app you're trying to change the icon color for doesn't have that level of customization, consider using a third-party tool. You might need a different Android launcher than the one that came with your phone for that to work.

FAQ
  • How do I change the color of apps on a Samsung phone?

    To change the color of your apps on a Samsung phone, tap and hold an empty area of the home screen and then tap Wallpaper and style. Tap Color Palette, and then choose the color you want. Tap Set as Color Palette. The color palette changes will affect stock apps and icons.

  • How do I change the color of my iPhone apps?

    To change the color of apps on iOS 14, you'll use the Shortcuts app to alter your apps' appearance. In this case, you're not directly changing the app's color; rather, this is a workaround that creates a "button" that can be different colors. To do this, launch the Shortcuts app and tap Add (plus sign); in the New Shortcut screen, tap Add Action. Search for and select Open App, and then, on the New Shortcut page, tap Choose. Locate the app whose appearance you want to change. Back on the New Shortcut page, you'll see the app name; tap More (three dots), change the app's name, tap its icon, select Color, and choose a new color. Use other customization options here to further change its appearance.

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