Journaling apps for iPhone

What are the best journaling apps for iPhone? If you're looking to ditch your worn-out old notebook and go digital, here's what you need!

Journaling is a great way to keep up your writing chops. It's also a great way to keep a record of your life. I wish I would have kept my childhood diaries—I'll bet they are a walk down memory lane. If you are practiced at keeping a journal or if you want to get started today, there are plenty of iPhone apps that cater to different types of journaling needs. Here's a list of our favorites.

Day One 2

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Day One 2 is one of the most versatile digital journals. You can create as many different journals as you wish, each with a different name and color identification. Journals can include pictures, your current activities, the weather, and even iTunes links to music you were listening to when you wrote a journal entry.

As far as customization goes, you can change practically everything about each entry, including the location, date and time, which is very useful if you forgot to write about a day's events yesterday, but don't want to lose your momentum.

When reading back over your life, you can organize entries by date, location, and which ones had pictures attached to them. You can also scroll through entries by individual journal or all together.

You can sync the iPhone and iPad version of Day One with the Mac version, making it convenient for people that like to journal from different devices.

If you take journaling serious and like having plenty of customizable options, Day One 2 will please you.



Momento is the daily journal keeper for people that post status updates on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter regularly. You can log in to each social networking service, plus Swarm for checkins, Moves for activities, and Uber for trip history, and view all of your personal posts in a feed.

It's not just for social media - You can also add new journal entries. You can write your thoughts and upload pictures. You can also add a location and include people from your contacts. You can manually change the date and time of new entries.

To better organize your life, you can make events out of specific dates. After connecting my social media accounts, I realized that I posted pictures of my trips to the State Fair every year. So, I created events for each one and can now find posts I published under the Events section.

People, places, and things you've tagged over your social media lifetime can be searched separately. Want to know what you've said about your best friend on social media? Select People and search through your history.

If you like to share your life on social media more than you like to keep it locked up in a journal, Momento makes it possible for you to see your life all in one place.

Grid Diary

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If you are new to journaling, Grid Diary is a great place to start. It has pre-made questions built right in to help trigger your writing. The questions are thought provoking and useful for coming up with information. The idea is to answer eight different questions that are displayed on a grid. Tap a question in any order to answer it. You can change the pre-made questions and, once you feel more comfortable with coming up with content to write, you can create your own.

You can add pictures, but the free version only allows five picture imports. If you are just starting out, I recommend skipping the $4.99 upgrade until you've had some time with journaling. Grid Diary is great for beginners, but you may want to move onto something more robust once you've been doing it for a while.

If you are new to journaling and need help coming up with inspiration to write, try Grid Diary.



For serious encryption, Penzu will keep you protected. Not only can you lock the app and individual diaries from access on your phone, but when you subscribe to the pro version for $4.99 per month (or $19.99 per year), you can sync your journals in the cloud with 256-bit encryption.

Journal entries are separated by posts instead of days. So, if you write your thoughts at different times throughout the day, they will be kept separate and easy to see. You can look up entries by day. If you subscribe to the pro version, you can also add tags and use advanced searching to find specific content.

You can add photos to each post and the on-screen keyboard has dedicated formatting for quoting, bullet points, and number lists. You can also add a link from anything you've recently copied on your iPhone.

If military grade privacy is the most important to you, you may want to invest in Penzu's subscription model.

Moleskine Journal


Moleskine is famous for its luxury notebooks. It easily made the switch to digital when Apple's iOS design was heavily weighted in skeuomorphism. Even though digital realism has gone the way of the dinosaur, Moleskine manages to keep it alive, and do it well. Your journals look like individual notebooks and can have a variety of different paper styles, like grid, storyboard, or lined.

This is designed to be a journaling app, but it is also useful as a general note-taking app, recipe saver, doodler, and more. You can import images and texts that you can save in the "Inner Pocket" and use with any journal entry. You can choose from four artist's tools for sketching out ideas. The digital scissors lets you cut out drawings and add them to the Inner Pocket, too.

You can connect Moleskine to Dropbox, Adobe Creative Cloud, and Evernote for online syncing. It also supports Pencil by FiftyThree. The iPad version includes new journal templates for recipes and traveling that you can get through an in-app purchase.

If you like having a journal around for doodling, writing down inspirational ideas, and generally being creative with your thoughts, Moleskine gives you that outlet.

Your favorites?

What are your favorite journaling apps and what makes them special to you? Let us know in the comments.

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