The new Yaru Ubuntu theme might be the talk of the Ubuntu town right now, but it’s not the only decent desktop theme out there.
If you want to give your Linux desktop a striking new look ahead of the autumn then the following quad-pack of quality GTK themes might help you out.
Don’t be put off by the fact you will need to manually install these skins; it’s pretty to install GTK themes on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS above, providing you set hidden folders to show (Ctrl + H) in Nautilus first.
Then, depending on how the theme is packaged, you should be able to:
- Download one of the themes below
- Extract the archive to the ~/.themes/ directory in your Home folder
- Change GTK theme using the GNOME Tweaks tool
If you don’t find the ‘.themes’ folder go ahead and create it.
The GNOME Tweaks Tool doesn’t come preinstalled on Ubuntu by default, but it is readily available in the Ubuntu Software app) .
Sweet GTK Theme
From the creator of the deliciously bloody Ant GTK theme is ‘Sweet’.
The theme was initially called (as you can see in the screenshot above) ‘Aqua’, but as it’s not based on or inspired by the ‘Aqua’ interface made famous in early versions of Apple’s macOS, a name change happened.
Sweet is pretty unique looking, using curves and colours to striking effect. The dark variant looks especially good when paired with something like the Zafiro icons pack (pictured). Together they create a classy neon nights vibe.
For more details about the theme, along with download links for the Sweet light GTK and Sweet dark GTK themes, head over to GNOME-Look.org.
MyColor GTK Theme
Perhaps you’re after something a bit Windows-y? If so, then the solid colours of the ‘My Color’ theme should suit.
The theme is available in 14 separate hues, including blue, pink, and orange. Each color set offers brightly coloured GTK window bars, and matching tool bars and buttons. The rest of window chrome is a mix of plain white and light grey backgrounds.
You’ll find more details over on GNOME Look page, including downloads for each of the 14 colours, but do note that the description is not in english.
Typewriter Openbox & GTK Theme
Part of the Typewriter colour scheme suite, the Typewriter theme is a light, airy theme with a structured, well ordered design.
Clean lines, sharp corners and recessive greys lend the theme an understated yet professional aesthetic.
The Typewriter theme is designed for the Openbox window manager. That said, it’s a GTK3 theme so it should, in theory, work fine on the other desktops, including the XFCE, Budgie, et al.
You can download the Typewriter GTK theme from GitHub.
Obscure GTK Theme
If you’re looking for a GTK theme that’s dark, sophisticated, and just a little bit dressy, Obscure is the one for you.
Obscure is a full dark theme (pictured) using various shades of grey and black. GTK header bars are particularly well styled with a classy, tactile gradient cleanly delineating them from the rest of the window chrome.
The designer behind the theme has created remixed versions, each offering a different accent/highlight colours, including blue, green, grey and orange. A mixed light/dark version, called “Dark Aurora“, is also available.
Like it? Go get it! Obscure is available to download from opendesktop.org.
If you think any of these should be added to (or replace something on) our list of 10 Best Ubuntu Themes do let us know in the comments!