20 beautiful dark themes for Gnome and Ubuntu

Some weeks ago, I shown you a list of 30 themes for enhancing your Gnome desktop. Many readers loved the dark themes from this list, so here's a new list of 20 dark and absolutely beautiful themes for your Gnome desktop.


Fedora Dark


Coal and Glass



Shifty July


Ubuntu Studio


Bruzd Nodoka


Black Fate

Murrina Limelight

Moomex Theme

Blue Joy

Hey, wait, there’s only 19 themes here! Yes, absolutely. Which theme will you suggest to be the 20th?

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  • Dak

    I honestly think that the dark themes are ugly. I can see when Ubuntu 8.10 is released, thousands of users will be changing their themes to a lighter one. I’ve seen some of these dark themes that the taskbar is dark and the text on the taskbar is black, making it extremely hard to read. Whoever thought that theme scheme up needs to rethink it some more.

  • jbj

    I use light themes myself, because most of the time they’re more user-friendly than the dark ones. Though, I think that dark themes can be really beautiful.

  • NiKoB
  • jbj

    Yeah I love Slickness Black 🙂 I didn’t listed it here because it already was in the first Gnome theme list.

  • Cobalt

    A handful of these are really nice.

  • People use dark themes mainly because they want to save their eyes. And these people typically use systems at night without any external light source.

    Thanks for the list.

  • Alvare

    Them make the screen consume less power xD
    I use dark themes, but in KDE.

  • lachild

    “Slickness Black is very cute too !”

    I agree, but to be honest Slickness (not the black version) is a tad bit nicer.

  • Beautiful Screenshots and some great theme choices. I personally love dark themes right up until I open a browser and check my bank account.

    You can theme your desktop, but writing new CSS layouts for jaringly white sites gets old pretty quickly. For this reason, light themes are my default pretty much forever more.

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  • Ese

    Are you insane!? where have you left elegant brit!? that has to be the best and most complete dark theme around gnome-look

  • jbj

    @Ese: Elegant Brit was already listed in my previous theme list 😉

  • Ese

    Oh thank god, I thought you were insane…

  • anon

    I’ll never understand why people want their Linux desktop to look like Vista.

  • Got to say I like LUX, I always find it difficult to get a decent background that looks complex, and yet isn’t too overwhelming.

    Nice choices 🙂

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  • Im not a great fan of dark / black themes but some of these are excellent! Nice picks 🙂

  • jbj

    Thanks mozami! (Totally off-topic, but your website is really beautiful!)

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  • Pavel

    Big thanks. Beautiful site. I’ll become your regular reader.

  • it will definitely burn out the desktop hard. (?) . Hard work Done

  • Thanks a bunch for this list, I’ve been looking for some good skins ever since I installed Linux on my flash drive.

  • I know that white themes are more popular and admittedly they are more user friendly, but I cant help liking the dark ones better myself.

  • Charlie M

    I used to really dislike dark themes, particularly the new one in the intrepid alphas. However I have been trying out one of the alternative intrepid ones, which works quite well. Its still dark but not completely black.

    The problem with dark themes is web browsing every site has a light background. So you can either override it and comply mess up the sites appearance, or you have a massive contrast change right in the middle of the screen. The semi-dark theme I am using seems to be a nice compromise.

  • I don’t like darker themes too. Think they are a bit confused to read, although they seems beautiful at first.

    PS: Only to remember: the correct name of the desktop environment is “GNOME”. Yes, with all capital letters.

    I know that I’m being bore. But if you want to check how it’s name is written, just visit the official site: http://www.gnome.org

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  • What a wonderful post am really amazed to see why this post did’t touched digg FP because the collection really deserve it they are huge in numbers and very beautiful looking.

  • Thx for this post! I love Blue Joy theme!

  • Some people think that dark themes use less electricity, but that is not true of LCD screens, they use pretty much the same electricity whenever they are on. I think CRT gets some benefit tho’, so even if you use a blank screen as a screen saver, you aren’t saving energy (or your battery) unless you set the screen to power down.

    Also, I like dark themes, I use LinuxMint with the Peppermint theme, which is dark grey, I think really black themes cause visibility problems on some webpages, and really light ones seem old-fashioned. I do not think light themes are more user friendly, contrast is more important to usability (and accessability) IMHO

  • Brandon

    I, personally, prefer light themes over darker themes for a few reasons. For one, it’s easier to see things.
    I dunno, just a thought 🙂

  • Fernand

    Willibex *really* kick ass, it’s the only dark theme I able to use:


  • DAAS

    my favorite is blue joy, but i can’t use it because it makes my eyes hurt when i’m chatting on emesene T-T
    I wish i could edit the entry box!

  • Thank you sooooo much for posting these. You saved me hours of work.

    Again: thanks!

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  • Great selection, especially like Fedora Dark, Shifty July and Ubuntu Studio! I’m going to try these out, thanks!

  • very nice !

  • You saved me hours of work, thanks for the list. I really like everything in dark color :D. This list will in my dark collection list

  • Thanks for the theme suggestions! Great selection!

  • Shit, my mouth is wide open while I’m looking at those graphics. I mean, WOW!! Great resource man, no wonder people are switching to Ubuntu!!

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  • naughtykid

    prefer dark theme for the sake of the eyes.
    sometimes staring too long on the light themes makes my eyes pain. anyway, it did help to make me have a lighter mood. Dark theme is pretty cool most of the time. Suggest the 20th is the HP mini version. It’s pretty cool too.

  • I am a recent Ubuntu convert and it seems that every day I find something cool for my new O/S.

  • Wow. Some great theme packages for Ubuntu here. I’ve never used the OS but it’s nice to see if I did, I could do it in style.

  • molecule-eye

    My favs are Cole (http://www.gnome-look.org/content/show.php/Cole?content=103837), which requires a bit of tweaking (making text brighter and scrollbars more visible), together with the ALLWHITE icon theme, and T3K (http://www.gnome-look.org/content/show.php/T3K?content=93372) with the Ice icon theme, and finally Mira (http://www.gnome-look.org/content/show.php/Mira+0.2.1?content=102281).

  • Inder…

    This ain’t one of Your impressive posts…

  • @Inder… : Why?

  • wow, black fate is beauty

  • really beautiful, thanks !

  • The problem with dark themes on any operating system is that the applications end up hardcoding text colors and not background colors, resulting in black text on a black background (Ex: http://projects.gnome.org/dia/faq.html [This one sets the background white with CSS, but doesn’t set the text color]). I’ve tried over and over to use dark themes on my Windows and Linux PCs mainly because it’s better on the eyes at night, but it never works out. There’s not really anything anyone can do about this, because it’s too easy for programmers to set either the background color or the forground color and assume that all computers have a white background and black text. I honestly don’t see this problem ever being fixed in the future of man kind.

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  • dominik

    Absolutely beautiful! Thanks so much 🙂

  • Answering firsts post about the convenience of dark themes:

    The darker the desktop is, the less your eyes will suffer, now, or after a long time.
    That has been historically known, and one of the reasons why old text mode OS used black balckground and clear text.

    Everything got messed in the time windowed systems appeared, turning into white bright screens (my eyes felt a knock).

    Although, most of nowadays linux themes, even dark, have low contrast that makes them be even worst for eyes and less usable. That problem use to not appear with light ones since people use black fonts.

    A dark theme should have costrasted content.

  • I think what people use has a lot to do with personality and mood. Dark themes may be good for some people.

  • It’s important to remember, though, that it’s more difficult to read white text on a black background than black text on a light background.

  • My favs ubuntu themes is maxicity products. Thank you for sharing.

  • pete


    is a good one, but there are a load more on the dark side. ‘MidnightOSX’ seemed to be popular in its day and would appeal to those mac look fans (but see the scroll bar bit below and… can’t get my head around that particular ‘mac look’ preference?? each to their own).

    ‘AmbienceNautilusMod-Dark’ isn’t too bad if you like the new Ubuntu look but want it toned down a fair bit.

    One thing that stops me downloading a dark theme, and I only use dark GTK2 themes, is if the scroll bars are too difficult to discern! I got fed up putting markers on, or highlighting the handles myself, so…