Google Docs is one of the best word processors out there. One of the biggest advantages Docs presents is that to use it, you don’t need to download anything. Everything takes place online, and you can access your documents from any device, anywhere in the world.
However, in these days, we often find ourselves working late at night, and such long exposure to the bright, white screen can seriously damage your eyes. Thankfully, there are multiple ways to enable ‘Dark Mode’ on Docs. What dark mode does is it reverses the colors of the text and the background. You will find that the dark background significantly reduces the pressure on your eyes, so it’s certainly a valuable tool.
Enabling Dark Mode in Google Docs on Chrome
Unfortunately, if you go to docs.google.com and sign in using your Google account, you’ll find that Docs doesn’t allow dark mode on Desktop. However, we will walk you through two methods that will enable dark mode in Google Docs.
Using Google Docs Dark Mode Extension
Go to chrome.google.com/webstore and in the search bar located at the top-left corner, type ‘Google docs dark mode’, and hit ‘Enter’.
Next, from the list of extensions, look for the extension offered by ‘Ivan Hidalgo’, and select it.
Once the extension page is open, click on the ‘Add to Chrome’ button located next to the extensions’ name on the screen.
Chrome will show a pop-up box letting you know that the extension can “Read and change your data docs.google.com” website. If you’re okay with that, click on the ‘Add extension’ button on the pop-up. If you’re not okay with it, hit Cancel and use the next method below (force enabling dark mode in Chrome).
The Google Docs Dark Mode extension will then notify you that it has been added to your browser. To access it, click on the tiny icon of the extension next to the address bar.
To pin the extension next to the address bar, click on the puzzle-shaped icon next to the address bar.
And then click on the pin-shaped icon next to the “Google Docs Dark Mode” extension from the list of all extensions installed in your Chrome browser.
Now, go to docs.google.com, and under ‘Start a new document’, select ‘Blank’ to open a fresh document (for testing).
You will see that dark mode has been applied to Google Docs automatically.
If you wish to turn off dark mode, click on the Google Docs Dark Mode extension icon next to the address bar.
A pop-up box showing the extensions’ options (two switches) will show.
The first switch which is located between the icons of the Sun and the Moon — which obviously represent light and dark mode respectively — changes the color of the Docs interface.
The second switch, located between the icons of light and dark document, changes the color of the document.
This method is definitely easier, but it has one major problem. As mentioned earlier, to use this extension, you will be required to permit ‘Google Docs Dark Mode’ extension to read and change your data on Google Docs website. This can be unsettling if you have confidential data on Google Docs. In this case, you’re better off using the next method.
Forcing Dark Mode for All Websites on Google Chrome
First, open Chrome browser on your computer and go to Chrome’s experimental features page by typing the following URL in the address bar. Please note that this method forces dark mode on all websites.
Then, in the search box at the top of the Experiments page, type ‘Force dark mode’.
Once you see the ‘Force Dark Mode for Web Contents’ option, click on the drop-down menu next to it and select ‘Enabled’ from the available options.
Google Chrome will then give you a prompt asking you to relaunch the browser. Before selecting ‘Relaunch’, make sure you don’t have any unsaved work.
Chrome will restart, and all the websites will have a black background and white text, including the Google Docs website. It is also important to note that Chrome Flags are not profile-specific, so dark mode will be applied to all your Chrome profiles.
Enabling Dark Mode in Google Docs on Firefox
Open the Firefox browser on your computer and click on the ‘Menu’ button at the top-right corner of the screen.
Next, in the drop-down menu, click on ‘Add-ons and Themes’ option.
Then, in the search bar at the top of your screen, type ‘Dark reader’.
Under the search results, select the first extension, ‘Dark Reader’ offered by Alexander Shutau.
Next, in the box with basic information about the extension, select ‘Add to Firefox’.
Dark Reader will then ask permission to access your data on all websites. Select ‘Add’.
In the top-right corner of your screen you will be notified that the Dark Reader extension was added to your browser. Click ‘Okay’ to get rid of the notification.
Whenever you want to switch back to light mode, you can access the Dark Reader by going back to ‘Add-ons and Themes’ option in the ‘Menu’. You can also access add-ons by simply pressing
Ctrl + Shift + A.
Next, go to the ‘Extensions’ tab on the left side of your screen. The selected tab will be highlighted in blue.
Then, under ‘Manage Your Extensions’, you’ll find a switch next to the Dark Reader extension. Flip the switch to disable dark mode.
You can also disable dark mode by clicking on the Dark Reader icon next to the address bar. When the dark mode is enabled, the extension will automatically be pinned.
Next, in the Dark Read add-on menu, click on ‘Off’ in the top-right corner to disable dark mode.
Enable Dark Mode in Google Docs on Microsoft Edge
You can enable Dark Mode for Google Docs in Microsoft Edge just like you did on Chrome using the same “Google Docs Dark Mode” extension or by force enabling dark mode for all websites in the browser.
Using Google Docs Dark Mode Extension
Open the Microsoft Edge browser and go to microsoftedge.microsoft.com/addons. Next, in the search bar at the top-left corner, type ‘Google docs dark mode’ and hit ‘Enter’.
From the search results, click on the name of the first extension for more details.
Next, click on ‘Get’ button next to the add-on’s name on the right side of the screen.
The extension will then request to read and change your data on Google Docs. If you’re okay with it, click on the ‘Add Extension’ button in the confirmation box.
You will then be notified that the extension has been added to Edge.
Now, after installing the extension, go to docs.google.com and you should see it running in Dark Mode thanks to the extension we installed.
To disable dark mode, simply click on the Google Docs Dark Mode icon which has been automatically pinned next to the address bar.
After the drop-down menu appears, you can easily disable dark mode by flipping the second switch.
Unfortunately, using a third-party extension has some privacy issues as you’re required to allow the extension to read and make changes to your data on Google Docs. If you have confidential data on Docs, the next method will be more suitable for you.
Forcing Dark Mode on Microsoft Edge
This method is almost identical to the method used for Chrome. Go to Edge’s experimental features page by typing
edge://flags in the address bar. Then, in the search bar at the top of the page, type ‘Dark mode’.
Click on the drop-down menu next to the ‘Force Dark Mode for Web Contents’ option and select ‘Enabled’.
To apply the changes, Edge will ask you to restart the browser. Click on ‘Restart’, and you’ll have Dark Mode enabled for all websites in the browser.
Enabling Dark Mode in Google Docs on Mobile Devices
Enabling dark mode for Google Docs is much easier on mobile devices. All you need to do is launch the Google Docs app, and click on the three-lined menu at the top-left corner of your screen.
Then, tap on ‘Settings’ from the menu options.
Next, tap on the ‘Theme’ option.
After that, change the theme to ‘Dark’. A blue tick will appear next to the selected option.
That’s it. This will force the app to run in Dark Mode always regardless of your mobile’s system settings.