A Windows 11 taskbar with an accent color applied

Windows 11 already sports a stylish design, but adding some personality to your PC might make you feel more at home. Luckily, it’s easy to personalize Windows 11 by adding color to the taskbar. Here’s how to do it.

First, open the Settings app by pressing Windows+i on your keyboard. Or you can right-click the taskbar and select “Settings” in the menu that appears.

In Settings, click “Personalization” in the sidebar, then select “Colors.”

Under “Colors,” locate the option labeled “Choose Your Mode” and select “Custom” from the drop-down list.

Under "Choose Your Mode," select "Custom."

Below that, use the drop-down menu beside “Choose your default Windows mode” to select “Dark.” This is a key step that will allow you to apply an accent color to the taskbar ahead.

Note: Under “Choose your default app mode,” you’re free to select either “Light” or “Dark.” It won’t affect the taskbar color.”

In "Choose your default Windows mode," select "Dark."

Next, scroll down to the “Accent Color” section and click a color in the grid you’d like to use for your taskbar. If you don’t see one you like, you can choose “View Colors” below the grid to pick a custom color.

Choose an accent color or pick a custom one by clicking "View Colors."

Finally, flip the switch beside “Show accent color on Start and taskbar” to the “On” position.

(If you see this option greyed out, make sure you selected “Dark” under “Choose your default Windows mode,” as shown above. Accent colors don’t apply to the taskbar in “Light” Windows mode.)

Switch "Show accent color on Start and taskbar" to "On."

Instantly, you’ll see the accent color you selected applied to the taskbar. Nice!

A Windows 11 taskbar with color applied.

If you want to apply it to  the title bars as well, flip “Show accent color on title bars and windows borders” to the “On” position as well. When you’re satisfied, close Settings.

If you change your mind later, open Settings and return to the default color by selecting a pre-set theme that ships with Windows, or you can navigate to Personalization > Colors and flip “Show accent color on Start and taskbar” to the “Off” position. Have fun customizing!

RELATED: How to Change Themes on Windows 11

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Benj Edwards is a former Associate Editor for How-To Geek. Now, he is an AI and Machine Learning Reporter for Ars Technica. For over 15 years, he has written about technology and tech history for sites such as The Atlantic, Fast Company, PCMag, PCWorld, Macworld, Ars Technica, and Wired. In 2005, he created Vintage Computing and Gaming, a blog devoted to tech history. He also created The Culture of Tech podcast and regularly contributes to the Retronauts retrogaming podcast.
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