How to Customize Your Chromebook Appearance

Last updated on January 14th, 2024

Are you tired of your Chromebook’s default look? I’ve got good news. You can easily customize your Chromebook’s appearance to match your style. From changing your wallpaper to tweaking your shelf’s position, there’s a whole world of personalization options waiting for you.

I’ll walk you through the steps to make your Chromebook truly yours. Whether you’re a Chromebook newbie or a seasoned user, you’ll find these tips handy. Let’s dive in and give your Chromebook a fresh new look!

Choosing a Custom Wallpaper

When I want to add a more personal touch to my Chromebook, one of the easiest changes I can make is to switch my wallpaper. Not only can I choose a pre-loaded design, but also upload my own pictures–letting me turn my device into a digital photo album.

Let’s talk about how to change the wallpaper on a Chromebook. Let’s say I’m using the latest Chrome OS. I’ll go to the bottom-right corner of the screen and click on the status area, where my account picture shows. From there, I’ll hit the settings icon, then click on Wallpaper in the side menu that appears. Here, under the “Appearance” category, I can either choose a preset wallpaper or click on Custom to upload a picture of my choice.

Tip: Images with a resolution of 1920×1080 pixels tend to work best as Chromebook wallpapers. Now, for those who like changes and surprises, Chromebook offers an interesting feature: Surprise Me. This feature automatically changes the wallpaper every day. To use it, I’ll just toggle on the option in the Wallpaper section of Appearance settings.

One thing I always remember when customizing my Chromebook’s appearance is to experiment and have fun. There’s no limit to the number of times I can change my wallpaper, and if I’m ever bored with the display, it’s easy to switch back or try something new. No conclusion here, let’s move on to the shelf adjustment settings on our Chromebook.

Changing the Shelf Position

Moving on to the next little nuance of Chromebook customization: the shelf position. The “Shelf” is the taskbar at the bottom of your Chromebook’s screen where you see all the app icons. By default, it’s located at the screen’s bottom, but did you know that you can change its position too? Let me guide you through.

To change the position of your Shelf, all you need to do is right-click on the empty space of the shelf. Here’s how: two-finger click on your trackpad, or a single right-click if you are using a mouse. Once you’ve right-clicked, you’ll be welcomed by a context menu. You will find the option ‘Shelf position’.

Under ‘Shelf position’, you’ll see three options: ‘left’, ‘bottom’, and ‘right’. Choose the one best suited to your needs. Just a click and Voila! You have successfully adjusted the Shelf’s position. I’m also going to share a helpful trick I’ve learned over the years. If you’re someone who likes working with multiple windows open or just likes having a bigger vertical view, moving the shelf to the side—either left or right—can free up some screen real estate. Try it out and see how it feels!

Stepping into ‘Shelf autohide’ is another great variation you might want to try. This option makes the Shelf disappear when you are not using it. Once again, to enable this feature, right-click on the shelf > Shelf autohide. Now, your shelf will neatly tuck itself away when you’re not using it.

Take your Chromebook’s customization journey step by step. Start with changing the wallpaper, then moving on to adjusting the shelf settings. It’s about making your device match your personal aesthetic and workflow. Working on a device that’s visually pleasing and functional can make the overall computing experience so much more enjoyable. Remember, there’s no right or wrong with customization. It’s all about experimenting and finding what ‘clicks’ for you.

Using Custom Chrome Themes

Moving along from the shelf position, let’s jump in another incredible way to personalize your Chromebook – using custom Chrome themes. I’ll take you through the process, step-by-step. One of the easiest and most exciting parts of customization is changing the theme. Custom Chrome Themes let you switch up your browser’s aesthetic and can dramatically affect how you interact with your device. It’s sort of like changing your outfit – you can choose a look that matches your mood or style that day.

To access these themes, click on the Chrome settings icon, then choose Appearance. In the appearance options, you’ll find a section for Themes. Here is where you get to have fun with a variety of options!

  • Enchanted Places for those who love dreamy landscapes.
  • Dark & Black Themes for minimizing bright light and creating a comfortable browsing environment.
  • Beautiful Landscapes for compelling, stunning outdoor scenery. When you’ve found the perfect theme, click on Add to Chrome. Your browser will transform right before your eyes, giving your Chromebook a fresh new look. It’s important to remember that you can change your theme as often as you’d like. So, feel free to experiment until you find what best suits you. Custom themes are just another way to make our Chromebook truly personalized. After exploring shelf positioning and custom themes, the next topic we’ll discuss is how we can use extensions to further customize our Chromebook.

Adding Custom Icons and Cursors

Let’s dig deeper into personalizing your Chromebook. After playing around with Chrome themes, we can move on to adding custom icons and cursors.

An easy method for switching up your Chromebook’s look is by changing the icons. Icons represent applications, bookmarks, downloads, and more on your computer screen. They provide a visual and clickable way to interact with your Chromebook. So, changing the icons can give your device a fresh, unique look.

You can easily find a wide selection of free icons online by doing a simple Google search for “free icons.” Or, you can opt for paid icons from various sources for more exclusive options. Once you’ve chosen your favorite icon, save it to your device. From there, right-click on the app or bookmark you’d like to change, navigate to the ‘Change Icon’ tab, and upload the desired image.

Once you’ve jazzed up your icons, you might also want to consider switching out your cursors. The process is very similar. Look for “free cursors” online, or opt for paid ones if you like. Save the cursor file on your device. Go to ‘Settings’, select ‘Mouse and touchpad’, and choose ‘Change mouse cursor’. There you can upload your new cursor file.

Remember, your Chromebook lets you experiment and change these visual elements as often as you like. So, keep things fresh, and don’t be afraid to change things up!

In the next section, we will discuss more about how to personalize your computer screen with custom wallpapers.

Enhancing the Launcher

This next vital step to tailoring your Chromebook’s aesthetic appeal is optimizing the launcher. Chromebook’s launcher isn’t just a mere starter platform – it’s the gateway to making the machine uniquely yours.

You may be asking, “How?” I’m delighted to tell you that I have some tips and tricks up my sleeve.

The customization options for the launcher are manifold. Firstly, you can adjust the launcher’s position. By default, it’s located at the bottom of the screen. But with the aid of settings adjustments, you can easily relocate it to the left or right side. The transformation is instantaneous and gives a drastic facelift to your Chromebook’s standard layout.

Another neat trick to improve your launcher’s usability is altering the size of your launcher icons. These icons are not set in stone, and you have the ability to make them smaller or larger. I find the smaller icons handy because they save precious screen real estate, giving me space to fit more to impress my eye.

Would you like to spice up your workspace by streamlining the task organization? Pin your most frequently used apps to the launcher. The pinned apps will appear permanently at the top of the launcher – a simple move that prevents unnecessary scrolling in pursuit of your favorite app.

The tip on changing launcher’s background is my personal favorite. Some small but smart tweaks in settings can bring this change. Free up an afternoon, get a cup of coffee ready and jump in the settings. I bet you’ll find exciting options for the background to suit your taste and give an aesthetic jumpstart to your workspace.

So, explore these tweaks generously and add a personalized touch to the launcher. Every minor adjustment brings you a step closer to making your Chromebook truly distinctive. I won’t make you wait any longer – start exploring! The maze of customization is open for you to navigate.


So there you have it – the insider’s guide to making your Chromebook truly yours. With a few tweaks here and there, you can transform the look and feel of your device. It’s all about exploring the world of custom icons, cursors, and wallpapers. Remember, you’re not stuck with the default settings. You can change things up as often as you like. The launcher too can be optimized to your liking. It’s not just about functionality, but also about aesthetics. It’s your Chromebook after all, so why not make it reflect your style? Go ahead, jump in the customization options, and watch your Chromebook transform. Happy customizing!

How can I customize the appearance of my Chromebook?

You can achieve this by using custom icons and cursors, personalizing your screen with custom wallpapers, and optimizing the launcher. These elements can change as often as you want to keep your Chromebook fresh and unique.

Where can I find custom icons and cursors for my Chromebook?

You can find them through various online sources. The article provides a process of finding and changing these elements. Both free and paid options are available, depending on your preference.

Can I personalize my computer screen with custom wallpapers?

Yes, you can personalize your computer screen with custom wallpapers. The process is described in the article, allowing you to make your device eye-catching and personalized.

What is optimizing the launcher on my Chromebook?

Optimizing the launcher involves adjusting its position, changing its icons size, pinning your frequently used apps, and altering the background. This process plays a vital role in customizing your Chromebook’s aesthetic appeal.

How often can I change my Chromebook’s visual elements?

You can change these elements as often as you desire. The article emphasizes the versatility of these personalization options, encouraging you to experiment and make your Chromebook distinctive.

By John Routledge

Founder and owner of - I'm an avid tech junkie, a lover of new gadgets and home automation. You will often find me reading, writing, and learning about new technologies. I've been featured in many leading technology magazines where I've written about my favorite topics.