40+ Beautiful Wallpapers to Brighten Your Mac Desktop

This post is part of a series that revisits some of our readers’ favorite articles from the past that still contain awesome and relevant information that you might find useful. This post was originally published on March 30th, 2011.

It’s time to ditch that ageing wallpaper on your desktop for something fresh and inspiring. There’s nothing better than a simple wallpaper that looks beautiful while not cluttering your display. Today we’re on a mission to find just this type of desktop background…

Whether you love simple graphic lines, typography, or photography, there’s something for you here. We’ve broken our collection of sexy wallpapers down into different categories to make it super-simple to find the right image for you, and even have a few exclusive OS X Lion wallpapers to share!

I hope you enjoy browsing through our collection of outstanding desktop wallpapers.

If you’d like to jump to the section that interests you the most, give one of these a try:

Lines and Graphics

These wallpapers are full of graphical goodness. Whether it’s cartoon-style simplicity, or something a little bit more in-depth, they’re simple enough to retain a minimalist desktop while adding that little touch of personality…


Who needs a crazy abstract wallpaper when you could settle for some beautifully rendered typography? All of these wallpapers use type in an elegant way – some with a simple result, and some with a little more complexity…


Using a photograph as a wallpaper can be a tricky thing to get right – even some of the images bundled with OS X are a little bit too “busy” for my taste. Here’s a collection that should fit the bill perfectly – many are taken from the outstanding Fifty Foot Shadows site, and I’d definitely recommend heading over there for plenty more outstanding photographs.

OS X Lion

If you’re on an older operating system, you might enjoy these three Lion only wallpapers.

Share Your Own!

If you’re using a beautiful wallpaper that we haven’t featured before, we’d love to hear about it. Just drop a link in the comments below so we can all take a look. Feel free to take a look at a few of the other wallpaper roundups we’ve posted as well!