How to turn on and edit the Favorites bar in Safari

A few weeks ago, I received a panicked call from my sister. "My Favorites are gone! I don't know where they went and I don't know how to get them back." The favorites in question weren't Instagram likes or Twitter stars — no, her new work Mac had come with its Bookmarks favorites bar disabled.

It's not uncommon to see this in new OS X Yosemite Macs; Safari's default view sports as few buttons and switches as possible, so as to immerse yourself in the Web browsing experience. But it's an easy fix to reenable the Favorites bar and even edit it.

How to turn on and edit the Bookmarks bar in Safari

Turning the Bookmarks or Favorites bar on is a relatively simple process.

  1. Open Safari.
  2. Select the View menu
  3. Find Show Favorites Bar
  4. Enable it.

(If you like keyboard shortcuts, you can also use Command-Shift-B to show or hide the bar.)

How to add new sites to your Favorites bar in Safari

Once your Favorites bar is visible, there several ways to add new sites and folders to it.

The easiest way to add a website is to drag its icon from the status bar to the Favorites bar; you'll see a green plus button to let you know it's safe to drop it onto the bar.

You can also add or edit favorites by doing the following:

  1. Click on the Sidebar icon in the upper left corner of Safari.
  2. Select the bookmarks icon.
  3. Open the Favorites section by clicking on the arrow.
  4. Click Edit.

Inside the Bookmarks editing screen, you can add folders to group bookmarks together, or simply drag bookmarks from their current location into the Favorites toolbar.

How to quickly edit your Favorites bar in Safari

If you'd prefer not to launch the full Favorites editor, you can tweak your favorites in a few different ways.

Rename them or their website: Want a different name for your new bookmark or need to update the address? Control-click (or right click) on a bookmark in the Favorites bar and select Rename Bookmark or Edit Address.

Delete: Don't want a bookmark on your Favorites bar anymore? Just drag it off the toolbar and it'll disappear in a cloud of pixel smoke.

Copy for later: Need to share an address with someone? Control-click on a bookmark and select Copy to save it to your clipboard.

Serenity Caldwell

Serenity was formerly the Managing Editor at iMore, and now works for Apple. She's been talking, writing about, and tinkering with Apple products since she was old enough to double-click. In her spare time, she sketches, sings, and in her secret superhero life, plays roller derby. Follow her on Twitter @settern.

3 Comments
  • How many people use the favorites bar, I wonder? I still depend on it, but I've greatly reduced the amount of items in it over the years. Now I have an Apple, iMore, and MoNa list, and that's all.
  • One of the frustrating things is that I cannot directly edit bookmarks (i.e. right click) which are in a folder in the favorites bar (for example, the iMore folder you have in the photo above). Just seems silly this can't be done like you can with Chrome, unless I'm missing something.
  • Does the favorits sync between devices? It seems I have different bookmarks on my Mac than on my iPhone. I have Safari synced so all other bookmarks is on both devices.