How to Set Up and Rearrange Folder Shortcuts in iOS Mail

Don't waste time looking for your favorite folders and mailboxes

Learning to check e-mail on smartphone

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Email folders and labels help you better organize your messages so that they are easier to find. However, the more folders or labels there are, the more disorganized they become over time, and it becomes harder to locate old and archived messages. When it's time to get those labels and folders in order, use the Mailboxes list in iOS Mail. Choose a few favorites (or many) and arrange them at the top of the Mailboxes list to your liking.

Instructions in this article apply to iPhones running iOS 12.

Add a Mailbox or Folder to Shortcut List in iOS Mail

To add a mailbox or folder to the shortcut Mailboxes list in iOS Mail:

  1. On the iPhone Home screen, tap the Mail app.

  2. Swipe from left to right until the Mailboxes list is visible.

  3. Tap Edit.

  4. In the editing screen, tap the circles next to the mailboxes or folders you want to appear at the top of the Mailboxes list for easy access.

    Mail icon, Edit button, checkboxes on iOS
  5. Tap Done to save your selections and return to the Mailboxes screen. Each item you selected appears at the top of the Mailboxes list.

    Editing screen in iOS Mail app

To remove a mailbox or folder from the shortcut list, go Mailboxes > Edit and unselect the circular button in front of the item. The mailbox or folder itself is not deleted. It is still available in the applicable account section further down in the screen.

All Apple Mail folders can be added to the shortcut list. With other email providers, such as Gmail, only the primary inbox can be added as a shortcut to the top of the Mailbox list. The other folders for each email provider are located further down the screen.

Rearrange Entries in the iOS Mail Shortcut List

To change the order in which folders appear in the Mailboxes list:

  1. Swipe from left to the right until the Mailboxes screen appears.

  2. Tap Edit.

  3. Tap and hold the three horizontal bars next to the mailbox or folder you want to appear elsewhere on the list.

  4. Drag the folder to the desired position.

    Edit, move icon, Done button in iOS Mail app
  5. Release your finger and the folder.

  6. Tap Done.