As with many web browsers, you can add a lot of new functions and features to Safari using extensions. There are Safari extensions for just about everything you can think of, including password management, ad blocking, and tab management. There are also extensions that automatically look for voucher codes when you reach checkout on shopping sites, and others that help you manage your time.
But where can you find Safari extensions? And once you’ve got them, how do you install them? And if you don’t need extensions anymore, how can you uninstall them?
In this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know.
A word of caution about extensions
Safari is a fast and lightweight browser, but the more extensions you install, the more likely it is to slow down. If you install too many extensions, you may find that your Mac’s performance is suffering.
For this reason, you should consider how useful an extension will be before installing it. If you add a lot of extensions to Safari, consider disabling the ones you’re not currently using (see the Disabling or Uninstalling Safari Extensions section below). This can help improve the speed and performance of Safari.
Finding and Installing Safari Extensions
Apple overhauled the Safari extension system a few years back, discontinuing the Safari Extensions Gallery. This helps Apple keep users safe from rogue extensions, but it also means that a lot of older extensions are no longer available. Now, if you want to find and add Safari extensions, you really only have one option—the Mac App Store.
To find Safari extensions, open the App Store, then select Categories from the side menu. Now, click on Safari Extensions. You can also get there by selecting Safari > Safari Extensions in the Safari menu bar.
You can now browse through the available extensions or use the search bar in the top left of the App Store to find them. Unfortunately, you can’t limit your search to just Safari extensions. And it’s not always clear whether you’re looking at a Safari extension or a standalone macOS app.
To add the extension, download it or buy it like any app in the App Store. When it is downloaded, click on Open.
You can now follow the prompts to enable the extension in Safari. Alternatively, you can open Safari and enable your new extension there. You may see a message at the top of the browser telling you that you have new extensions. Click View extension.
You can also choose Safari > Preferences from the menu bar and open the Extensions section. Find your new extension, and click on the checkbox. Hit turn on.
Disabling or Uninstalling Safari Extensions
You can disable or uninstall Safari extensions that you no longer use. If you are facing issues in Safari, you can disable all your extensions and then re-enable them one by one. This might help you determine if an extension is causing the problem, and which one. If you decide you no longer need an extension, you can uninstall it.
It’s a good idea to close all your open tabs in Safari before disabling or uninstalling an extension. If you have too many tabs open (perhaps because you’re using tab groups), Safari’s performance suffers when you disable or uninstall an extension. Every open tab will no longer have to be adjusted to keep that extension active, especially when using that tab extension.
To disable or uninstall an extension, go to Safari > Preferences, then click Extensions.
Uncheck an extension in the list on the left to disable it. To uninstall an extension, select it in the list, then click the Uninstall button .
You may see a message telling you that the extension is part of an app that you need to remove. Click Show in Finder.
Go Beyond Safari
If you can’t find the Safari extension you’re looking for, it might be worth trying a different browser. Other Mac web browsers like Chrome and Firefox have plenty of extension options. There’s a good chance that at least one of those browsers will have what you’re looking for.
The closure of the Safari Extensions Gallery is disappointing, but there are still plenty of great extensions to choose from. And as this guide shows, installing and uninstalling them is straightforward.