Things to look for in a screen wallpaper image

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There are many screen wallpapers out there, but before you put one on your device, here are a few things to look for.

Something that boosts your mood

It sounds obvious, but put your mental health first. Pick an image that boosts your mood - you'll be looking at your device wallpaper a lot, so make sure it's upbeat or at least makes you happy. Everyone is different, so what makes you feel happy won't be the same thing as what makes your friend feel happy, so pick something you like.

Preferably in tones of red, orange or yellow

The natural reds of sunset coincide with the end of the day, and for that reason a lot of people prefer to avoid blue light at night. Therefore, if you feel you'll get better sleep if looking at a red-toned screen, make sure your screen wallpaper fits the bill.

Some phones have the option to gradually adjust the hue of the screen to red tones as it gets toward the end of the day, so if that is the case for you then you may not have to worry as much about the color of your screen background. Some laptops and computers have this feature also - it's particularly easy to install if you happen to have Linux.

Still, to be on the safe side it can't hurt to choose something with red, orange or yellow tones. There are plenty of images that fit with this color scheme: sunsets, sunrises, desert landscape, certain fruits and vegetables, fall landscapes, and more.

Not too cluttered - let your icons stand out

Most importantly, you'll need to allow your icons to be easily visible. Even simple black and white photos can be a poor choice if there is a lot of variation in tone across the piece, as the icons just can't stand out among that kind of variation. Instead, consider these modern gradient backgrounds - they go gradually and seamlessly across color schemes, allowing your icons to stand out.

Of course, this may not be an issue for you if you're seeking a background for your computer or laptop if you don't typically place icons on the desktop. If all icons reside in a toolbar or launcher, then you may be fine with any type of background, even a busy one. But for phones and tablets, which have heavy use of icons, a gradient background is in general better than a photographic background.

This page was last updated on 20 Jul 2022.