How to Clear Messages on Mac

Alicia Santos

Mac, Tutorials

Do you find your Mac cluttered with old messages? Are you tired of scrolling through endless conversations to find the information you need?

It’s time to clear those messages and free up space on your Mac. In this tutorial, we will show you how to clear messages on Mac and keep your inbox organized.

Clearing Individual Messages

If you only want to delete specific messages from a conversation, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Messages app: Launch the Messages app from your Dock or click on the Spotlight search icon (magnifying glass) in the upper-right corner of your screen and type “Messages”.
  2. Select the conversation: Choose the conversation that contains the message(s) you want to clear.
  3. Locate the message: Scroll through the conversation until you find the specific message(s) you want to delete.
  4. Delete the message: Right-click on the message and select “Delete” from the context menu. Alternatively, you can press Command + Delete on your keyboard. Confirm your action by clicking “Delete” when prompted.

Note: Deleting individual messages will only remove them from your Mac. They will still be visible on other devices connected to your iCloud account.

Clearing Entire Conversations

If you prefer to remove entire conversations from your Messages app, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Messages app: Launch the Messages app as mentioned earlier.
  2. Select conversations: Press and hold Command while clicking on multiple conversations or use Shift + Up/Down arrow keys to select multiple conversations at once.
  3. Delete conversations: Right-click on any of the selected conversations and choose “Delete” from the context menu.

Note: Deleting entire conversations will remove them from your Mac as well as other devices connected to your iCloud account.

Clearing Messages Preferences

If you want to clear all messages on your Mac and start fresh, you can reset the Messages app preferences. However, this will remove all conversations, message history, and settings.

  1. Quit Messages: Make sure the Messages app is closed. If it’s open, click on “Messages” in the menu bar and select “Quit Messages”.
  2. Delete preferences file: Open Finder and press Command + Shift + G to open the “Go to Folder” window. Type “~/Library/Preferences/” (without quotes) in the text field and hit Enter.
  3. Locate preferences file: In the Preferences folder, find the file named “” or “com.Messages.plist”.

    Drag this file to your Trash.

  4. Empty Trash: Right-click on the Trash icon in your Dock and select “Empty Trash”. Confirm your action by clicking “Empty Trash” when prompted.
  5. Restart Messages: Open the Messages app again. It will now be reset to its default settings with no message history.

Note: Resetting Messages preferences will not remove messages from other devices connected to your iCloud account. It only clears data stored on your Mac.


In this tutorial, you learned how to clear messages on your Mac. Whether you want to delete individual messages, entire conversations, or reset the Messages app preferences, keeping your inbox organized is now a breeze. Use these simple steps to declutter your Mac and enjoy a cleaner messaging experience.

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