How to Add Favicons to Safari on macOS

We’ve been clear: Mac users should ditch Chrome for Safari. It offers much better battery life, better performance, and content filters are way better than ad blockers.

Safari is better than Chrome in every way, bar one: Safari lacks favicons. Which is weird: these little icons are a great way to identify which tabs are which. Maybe Apple thinks they’re ugly, or maybe they just don’t want to clutter up the user interface, but for whatever reason Safari doesn’t offer favicons out of the box.

Enter Faviconographer. This third party program does one thing: add favicons to Safari. It’s not perfect, but it works, and unlike other solutions for this, you don’t even need to disable System Identity Protection.

Installing is simple: just download Faviconographer, open the DMG file, and then drag the icon to your Applications folder.

The first time you launch the program, you’ll need to change some permissions so that Faviconographer can control your computer using accessibility features.

Click the button to head to the appropriate panel in System Preferences, click the lock at bottom left to allow changes, and then ensure that the “Faviconographer” option is enabled in the list.

And just like that, Faviconographer is set up. Open Safari and you should see the favicons.

Things get a little weird when you move or resize the window: the icons lag a little behind. And you won’t see the icons at all when Safari isn’t the active window. So yeah, it’s not perfect, but it’s better than nothing, and it’s very light on system resources.

There isn’t much in the way of settings.

You can display the favicons for tabs (enabled by default), and you can also add them to your Favorites Bar if you use that feature. There’s also a checkbox for launching the app automatically when you log in.

Note also that there’s no menu bar icon for this program. If you want to change settings, or quit the application, simply re-launch it—this open the settings window again.

Justin Pot is a staff writer for How-To Geek, and a technology enthusiast who lives in Hillsboro, Oregon. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook, if you want. You don't have to.