Guide to Customize Windows 10 Look and Feel

Windows 10 is a great operating system, but it can look a little boring out of the box. In this guide, we will show you how to customize the look and feel of Windows 10 to make it more personal and unique. We will cover everything from changing the desktop background to adding new icons and fonts. So whether you are looking to give your computer a fresh new look or just want to tweak a few things, read on for our guide to customizing Windows 10.

How to Change Desktop Background on Windows 10?

Changing the desktop background is the best and quickest way to get a new feel on Windows 10. This will instantly give a new look to your default system. On Windows 10, there are various ways you can customize your desktop.

Set a Picture as the Desktop Background

Here are the steps to change the desktop background on Windows 10:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.choose-personlization-settings
  3. Make sure you are on the Background tab from the left pane.background-settings-windows-10
  4. Expand the drop-down menu below Background, and choose the Picture option.picture-as-background
  5. Now you have to select the picture for the background. For that, you can either choose one of the default pictures available or click on Browse to select a photo of your choice.browse-the-background-picture
  6. Choose a preferred fit to the background picture by expanding the Choose a fit option.choose-a-fit
  7. The selected picture will be set as the desktop background.

Set Slideshow on the Desktop Background

Windows 10 also allow you to set a slideshow on the desktop background. The slideshow lets you put a bunch of photos as a background that changes periodically.

To set a slideshow on the Windows 10 desktop, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Make sure you are on the Background tab from the left pane.
  4. Expand the drop-down menu below Background, and choose the Slideshow option.slideshow-windows-10
  5. Now click on Browse to choose a folder containing all the slideshow images. There is a default folder for that, but if you want custom pictures in the slideshow, collect them all, put them in a folder, and select that folder.browse-folder-for-slideshow
  6. Next, apply more configuration:
    • Change duration of how much time a picture is displayed.
    • Turn ON/OFF Shuffle the picture order
    • Enable/disable slideshow even on battery powered
    • Choose a Fit for the picture.configure-windows-10-slideshow

Set a Solid Color as Desktop Background

If you don’t want any picture or a slideshow as the desktop background and want to give a minimalistic look to your desktop, you can just set a solid color as the desktop background.

To do that, follow these instructions:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Make sure you are on the Background tab from the left pane.
  4. Expand the drop-down menu below Background, and choose the Solid color option.set-solid-color-windows-10
  5. Choose the background color from the given option.chose-color-for-windows-10-bg
  6. You can also select a custom color by clicking on the Custom color button.choose-custom-color-win10-bg

How to change Windows 10 Colors?

When it comes to colors, Windows 10 provides vast options to configure. You can select the overall Dark or Light Mode, change accent color for Start menu, Taskbar, Notification Center and Quick Settings, title bars, borders, and apps. 

Enable Light or Dark Mode on Windows 11

On Windows 10, you can easily switch between dark or light mode as per your preference. Here are the instructions to do that:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Colors tab from the left pane.personalize-windows-10-colors
  4. Under the Colors page, expand the drop-down sub-menu and choose Dark or Light mode.light-or-dark-mode-windows-10
  5. You can also choose Custom from the list that will allow you to select the Default Windows Mode and Default Apps mode separately.custom-mode-win10

Configure Transparency Effect

You can enable or disable the transparency effects on Windows 11 elements such as Start Menu, taskbar, app windows, Notifications Centre, and others. Follow these steps to configure Transparency Effect:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Colors tab from the left pane.
  4. Toggle the button to turn ON or OFF the transparency effects.transparency-effects-win10

Set Accent Color

The accent color is the one you will see everywhere on your windows. On Windows 11, you can set accent color on auto mode or as per your choice. Here are the instructions for that:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Colors tab from the left pane.
  4. On Colors settings, under Choose your accent color, either check the Automatically pick an accent color from my background or pick a color from available options.choose-accent-color-windows-10
  5. Windows 10 provides you with 48 colors to set as Accent color, but if you still want a color of your choice, you can do that by clicking on Custom color.choose-custom-accent-color

Show Accent Color on Start, Taskbar, and other Elements

After setting up the accent color, you can show it on the Windows Start Menu, Taskbar, Title bars, borders, and other elements.

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Colors tab from the left pane.
  4. Under Show accent color on the following surfaces toggle buttons to turn ON or OFF these options:
    • Start, taskbar, and action center
    • Title bars and window bordersshow-accent-colors-win10

Note: The option to Start, taskbar, and action center will be greyed out if your Windows is in Light Mode. That option is only applicable on the Dark Mode.


How to customize Windows 10 Lock Screen?

Lock Screen is the one that appears whenever you initiate signing in to your Windows 10 system. Though you probably don’t spend much time on the lock screen, still customizing it will give you a new feel of your operating system.

On Windows 10, there are various options to customize your lock screen.

Set a Custom Image as Lock Screen Background

You can easily set a picture of your choice as a background on the Windows 11 Lock Screen. This way, you will only see what you like whenever you start your device.

Here are the steps to set a custom image as Lock Screen Background:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Lock screen tab from the left pane.windows-10-lock-screen
  4. Expand the drop-down menu below Background, and choose the Picture option.set-picture-as-lockscreen-bg
  5. Now you have to select the picture for the lock screen background. For that, you can either choose one of the default pictures available or click on Browse to choose a photo.choose-bg-image-for-lockscreen

Set a Slideshow on the Lock Screen Background

Like your desktop background, you can also set a slideshow on the lock screen background.

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Lock screen tab from the left pane.
  4. Expand the drop-down menu below Background, and choose the Slideshow option.lock-screen-slideshow-win10
  5. Now click on Add a folder to choose a folder containing all the slideshow images. There is a default folder too, but if you want custom pictures in the slideshow, collect them all, put them in a folder, and select that folder.lockscreen-slideshow-win10
  6. After selecting the slideshow folder, click on the Advanced slideshow settings.advanced-slideshow-settings-win10
  7. Configure the Advanced slideshow settings.configure-advanced-slideshow-settings-win10

Set Windows Spotlight as Lock Screen Background

The Windows Spotlight feature pics up the latest pictures from Bing and shows them on the lock screen background. If you want to set it as a lock screen background, follow these instructions:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Lock screen tab from the left pane.
  4. Expand the drop-down menu below Background, and choose the Windows spotlight.windows-spotlight-as-lock-screen
  5. Now you will see the latest pictures from Bing on your lock screen that changes periodically.

Configure App Notifications on Lock Screen

Windows 10 allows you to access the notifications of certain apps on your lock screen. Here is how to configure it:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Lock screen tab from the left pane.
  4. Click on Choose an app to show detailed status on the lock screen.choose-app-for-detail
  5. Choose one of the apps from the list.
  6. Under the Choose which apps show quick status on the lock screen, click on the + icon.quick-status-of-the-apps
  7. Choose the app to show on lock screen window.choose-app

How to customize Windows 10 Themes?

Changing the theme will also instantly give your Windows 10 system a newer look altogether. If you change your theme, other elements such as wallpaper, accent color, the mouse pointer, and in some cases, even the Windows sound also changes.

Change Windows 10 Theme

To change the theme on your Windows 10 operating system, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Themes tab from the left pane.customize-themes-win10
  4. Under the Change theme, choose one of the available themes to give a new look.change-theme

Download Custom Windows 10 Themes

If you don’t like any of the available themes, you can download the custom Windows 10 themes as per your choice. Here are the steps for downloading and using the custom themes:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Themes tab from the left pane.
  4. Under the Change theme, click on Get more themes in Microsoft Store.get-more-themes
  5. Click on the theme of your choice on Microsoft Store.micorosoft-store-theme
  6. Click on the Get button to begin downloading the theme.get-new-theme-for-Windows-10
  7. After installing it, click on Open, you will reach the Windows Theme Settings page.open-downloaded-theme
  8. Choose your downloaded theme to enable it on your computer.set-new-theme

How to customize Windows 10 Start Menu?

Windows OS Start Menu is one of the main components users use most regularly. It allows you to access the installed apps and navigate to the settings. Using Start Menu, you can find almost everything on your system. There are plenty of options to customize the Windows 10 Start Menu.

Customize the Start Settings

For basic customization of the Start menu, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Start tab from the left pane.start-settings-win10
  4. Configure the basic Start settings.personalize-start-win10

Add or Remove Folders on Start Menu

You can add or remove common folders such as Documents, Downloads, Pictures, Music, etc., to the Start Menu for quick access. Here is how to do that:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Start tab from the left pane.
  4. Click on Choose which folders appear on Start.choose-which-folders-to-appear
  5. From the list, enable the folder that you want on Start.choose-which-folders-to-appear-on-start
  6. The enabled folder can be accessed from the Start menu above the Power button.start-folder

Pin and Unpin Apps to Start

On your Windows 10 Start Menu, you can pin apps for quick access. It is pretty straightforward to do that.

Here are the steps:

  1. Open the Start menu, and search for the app you want to pin.
  2. Right-click on the app icon and select Pin to Start.pin-to-start-win10
  3. The selected app will be added to the Start Menu.app-added-to-start
  4. You can also resize the app icon. Right-click on the added icon, hover the mouse pointer to Resize option, and choose the size: Small, Medium, Wide.resize-icon

To unpin apps from Start, follow these instructions:

  1. Open the Start menu, and look for the app you want to unpin from the start.
  2. Right-click on the app icon and select Unin to Start.unpin-from-start-win10
  3. The app will be gone from the Start menu.

Resize the Start Menu

If you feel uncomfortable with the Start Menu’s current size, you can easily resize it according to your comfort. For that, you just have to drag the Start Menu from any of the two open sides or the right-most corner.

Resize Start Menu

Turn Off Live Tile Updates

Sometimes continuously changing tiles can be unsoothing for your eyes and annoy you. You can turn Off the live updates so that it would stop changing. 

Right-click on the Live updating tile. Hover over More option and select Turn Live Tile off

Turn Live Tile off

However, it is good to have live Weather updates, so it can remain unchanged.


How to customize Windows 10 Taskbar?

Windows 10 taskbar is pretty customizable. If you want to change the look of your system, customizing the taskbar is one of the steps you must take.

Lock Windows 10 Taskbar

You can lock the taskbar on Windows 10 to avoid accidental customizations such as size change and others. Here is how to lock the taskbar:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Taskbar tab from the left pane.
  4. Toggle the button to Lock the taskbar.lock-the-taskbar-win10

Automatically Hide the Taskbar

While working on something, if you want your system in full-screen mode to avoid any distractions, you can enable the automatically hide the taskbar option on Windows 10.

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Taskbar tab from the left pane.
  4. Toggle the buttons to hide the taskbar in desktop mode and tablet mode.automatically-hide-the-taskbar

Use Small Taskbar Buttons

By default, you will find big buttons on the Windows 10 taskbar. When you open too many applications, the taskbar will not be able to accumulate all the icons and become scrollable because of the big buttons. To avoid this, you can enable the small taskbar buttons.

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Taskbar tab from the left pane.
  4. Enable the Use small taskbar buttons option by toggling the button.

Change the Taskbar Location 

On Windows 10, you can place the taskbar on any side of the screen – Top, Bottom, Left, Right.

To change the taskbar’s current position, follow these instructions:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Taskbar tab from the left pane.
  4. Expand the drop-down menu below the Taskbar location on screen and choose location.taskbar-location-win10

Pin and Unpin Apps to Taskbar

On your Windows 10 Taskbar, you can pin apps for quick access. It is pretty straightforward to do that.

Here are the steps:

  1. Open the Start menu and search for the app you want to pin to the taskbar.
  2. Right-click on it, hover the mouse over More, and choose Pin to taskbar.pin-to-taskbar-win10
  3. The app will be added to the taskbar.

To unpin the app from the taskbar, follow these steps:

  1. On the taskbar, look for the App that you want to unpin.
  2. Right-click on the app icon and select Unpin from taskbar.unpin-from-taskbar-win10

How to change Windows 10 Icons?

If you are bored with the current icons on your Windows 10 system, you can change them and assign the new one. You can change the Desktop icons and Folder icons.

Change the Desktop Icons

To change the Desktop icons such as Recycle Bin, Network, and others, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Personalization settings from the list.
  3. Switch to the Themes tab from the left pane.
  4. Scroll down and under Related Settings, click on Desktop icon settings.desktop-icon-settings-win11
  5. Under the new window, select the icon you want to change and click on the Change Icon.change-desktop-icon
  6. Select a new icon from the available ones.choose-the-icon

Change the Folder Icons

On Windows 10, you can easily change any folder icon. Here are the steps to do that:

  1. Right-click on the folder whose icon you want to change and select Properties.
  2. Switch to Customize tab and click on the Change Icon button.change-icon
  3. Select the new icon for your folder from the available options.change-folder-icon

Change Desktop Shortcut Icons

Like Folder icons, you can also change the icons of the app’s shortcuts. Follow these instructions:

  1. Right-click on the shortcut whose icon you want to change and select Properties.
  2. Under the Shortcut tab, click on the Change icon.change-shortcut-icon
  3. Select a new icon from the available ones.select-new-icon

How to Customize Mouse Pointer Windows 10?

On Windows 10, if you are finding it difficult to use the mouse pointer, you can customize it easily and make it larger, change its color, and more.

Change the Mouse Pointer Style

To change the mouse pointer style, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the Start button and select Settings from the list.
  2. Choose Ease of Access settings from the list.ease-of-access-win10
  3. From the left pane, switch to the Mouse pointer.mouse-pointer-win10
  4. Change the pointer size by dragging the slider.change-pointer-size-win10
  5. To change the color, choose one of the available, or click on the Custom button.custom-pointer-color
  6. Choose the pointer color from the given option or click on the + icon to select another one.choose-mouse-pointer-color

Summing Up

As you can see, there are a lot of ways to customize the look and feel of Windows 11. It’s up to you to decide which settings you want to change and how far you want to go with it. If you want to make your computer truly yours, these are the steps you need to take. Have fun!

How do I make Windows 10 more aesthetic?

To make Windows 10 more aesthetic, you can download and install custom themes, set minimalistic background pictures, and change app and folder icons. Follow this guide to know how to personalize Windows 10 and make it aesthetic.

Can you change the App icon on Windows 10?

Yes, Windows 10 gives you the option to change the app and folder icon. For some apps there are a few icons available, for others, you need to download icons and install them separately.

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