Why is Safari Black on My Mac?

There are several reasons why your Safari can appear to be black on your Mac. For example, dark mode is on, or you have tab bar tinting enabled. If you’re looking for clarity or a solution, you’ve come to the right place.

My name is Adetayo, I’ve been a loyal Mac user for over five years and have used a wide range of Mac products such as the Macbook Air, MacBook Pro, and the versatile iMac. I use Safari almost every day and I’ve had my fair share of eye-opening experiences. 

This article will go over the possible causes for the black screen you are experiencing on your Safari, along with easy-to-follow solutions to change it if you want.

Let’s dive right in!

Factors That Could Cause Safari to Be Black on Mac

Safari has adopted quite a few unique features over the years. Some of these features could be responsible for the new look of your web browser. However, they are harmless and can easily be reversed.

1. Private Browsing Mode

A likely scenario is you accidentally opened up a private browsing tab and are now on the private browsing home page. A private tab, also known as an incognito tab, is most helpful when you have multiple devices connected, such as your iPad, iPhone, and MacBook. 

The private browsing mode does not record the history of what you browse on your Mac. This way, you do not have to be worried about other people viewing your history. 

As you may have noticed from my screenshot above, the private browsing page has a darker background than the usual page. This could explain why safari is black on your Mac.

2. Dark Mode  

This is another viable reason why safari is black on your Mac. The level of system customization has dramatically improved over the years giving rise to themes. Dark mode has recently gained popularity, forcing many developers to implement it into their applications. 

Your system and applications have a darker theme. Safari is right up there, and its dark mode is shown in the image above. The main benefit of dark mode is to reduce the strain on your eyes when you use your Mac at night. This can easily be reversed.

3. Tab Bar Tinting

Newer versions of Safari can automatically change the tint of the tab bar to match whatever web page you are currently on. This can be pretty neat to look at, but it may also be inconvenient in your case. 

Automatic tab bar tinting can be a cause for concern, especially when you are browsing darker web pages. It could be the reason why Safari looks black on your Mac. Like the features mentioned earlier, tab bar tinting is easy to reverse, so fear not.

4. Black Screen Video

As I mentioned earlier, Apple developers are constantly working on new features for macOS. Unfortunately, as with all new software, you are bound to run into some bugs here and there. One of those bugs could cause Safari to appear black on your Mac. 

There is a common bug on newer versions of Safari that can be rather annoying once encountered. The way it works is you try to play a video in Safari, and all it shows you is a black screen. You may hear audio, but you won’t see anything. 

This bug is situational and may not occur on all video viewing platforms. It all boils down to compatibility issues between Safari and the website.

How to Fix Safari Black Screen

Now that we have examined the possible causes of Safari black screen, let’s go over the solutions if you want to fix it. 

1. Close Private Browsing

If you are on a private browsing tab, this could cause your Safari to appear black. To solve this, simply click on the Tab icon (as shown in the screenshot below) to switch to a normal Safari browser page (which will not be the black background).

2. Turn off Dark Mode for Safari

Dark Mode is another reason your Safari could appear black. To disable this, follow the simple steps below: 

Step 1: Click the Apple icon in the top left of your screen. Then select System Preferences and General

Step 2: In Appearance, you will see three options: “Light,” “Dark,” and “Auto.” Select Light to disable Safari’s dark mode.

3. Turn off Tab Bar Tinting

Tab bar tinting is another Mac feature that could be causing your Safari to appear black. To disable this, follow the outlined steps below: 

Step 1: Open the Safari menu, click on Preferences.

Step 2: Click on the Advanced tab and uncheck Show color in Compact Tab Bar.

This will disable tab bar tinting and leave your Safari looking the way it was in previous versions.

4. Clear Cache and Cookies 

If all else fails, clearing cache and cookies is the next step you should take to solve this Safari black screen issue. Follow the steps below:

Step 1: Open the Safari menu and click on Preferences.

Step 2: Navigate to the Privacy tab, and click on Manage Website Data.

Step 3: Click on the Remove All button in the new window.

Step 4: Go back to the Preferences menu, click the Advanced tab and toggle Show Develop menu in menu bar on.

Step 5: Return to the main menu and click on Develop. You should now see the Empty Caches option. 

Step 6: Restart your Safari and try your videos. This should resolve the issue.


Here are a few related questions you might want to check out as well, I’ll answer them briefly below.

Do I need to reset my Mac to fix my black Safari screen?

Not necessarily. This depends on the cause of your black screen. It may not be drastic enough to warrant a system reset. Make sure to try the above-listed solutions before resetting your Mac. 

Can I reboot my Mac to solve my Safari black screen issue?

Again, it also depends on the cause of your black Safari screen issues. Rebooting your Mac may not solve the problem. 

Is Safari black screen a permanent problem?

Not in most cases. It’s usually an easy fix. All you need to do is carefully follow our guides above, and you should be good to go.


There you have it! A detailed guide on all the possible causes of Safari black screen on Mac. Like I said earlier, most of them are not really a problem at all, and I hope this puts your mind at ease.

Anyway, I hope this informative guide was able to explain exactly why Safari could appear black on your Mac. Feel free to leave some feedback if you still have any questions.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *