iOS 14: Customize your iPhone home screen with your own unique look

With iOS 14, Apple has finally given you the ability to customize the layout of your home screen to some extent. Instead of just repositioning icons, you can totally remove them thanks to the new App Library. With the new Widgets, you can finally fill your home screen with something other than just apps.

But the new “aesthetic” iPhone trend goes a lot further. By combining Shortcuts with custom icons and highly-customizable widgets, you can give your iPhone a dramatically different look.

Here’s how to get started making your iPhone “aesthetic.”

First, grab some icons

Before you do anything else, you’ll want to grab some images to use as icons. There are lots of designers with matching icon packs on the web, just search for what suits you. Some are free, others (like Traf’s popular minimalist icons) are quite expensive.

A great way to find some free icons is to search Twitter for “aesthetic iOS 14” and start poking around. 

You’ll want to add your icons to your Photos library. On your iPhone, long-press an image and choose “Add to Photos.” If you’ve got a Mac, you can drag images into your Photos app.

Use Shortcuts to replace apps

The key to replacing all your app icons with your own designs is to replace your actual apps on your home screen with Shortcuts.

shortcut aesthetic IDG
  1. Open the Shortcuts app (it comes installed on your iPhone).

  2. Tap the + button in the upper right to make a new Shortcut.

  3. Tap Add Action.

  4. Tap Scripting.

  5. Tap Open App.

  6. Tap the Choose word and select the app you want this shortcut to open.

  7. Tap the three dots (…) in the upper right and select Add to Home Screen.

  8. Give your shortcut a name (the name of the app is a good idea).

  9. Tap the image to the left of the name and pick Choose Photo. Select the image from your Photos library you want to use as your new icon.

  10. Tap Add in the upper right, and you’ll see a popup telling you the shortcut was added to the home screen.

shortcut aesthetic 2 IDG

Back on your home screen, you can see your new shortcut. If the original app icon is still on the home screen, long-press it, choose Remove App, and then Move to App Library to get it off your home screen.

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