Is your Mac starting to slow you down? All computers accumulate junk files over time, leading to slower processing times that can result in frustration and lost time. If you depend on your Mac system for work, you could lose productivity and money if you don’t implement a good Mac cleaning software. The best time to do this is right after investing in a new Mac or whenever you start to notice the first signs of a sluggish system.
Mac cleaning software can also save you from transferring useless files into iCloud. Your free cloud space is limited to 5 GB, and you don’t want to make the costly mistake of paying Apple to store junk that your system doesn’t need to operate at its best. In fact, those junk files could hold your Mac back from top performance, so it’s always better to clean up the mess than to shift it into cloud storage.
How does a mac cleaner help you avoid paying for extra storage? It frees up space on your hard drive so that you have less need to use your cloud space. If every file in your system serves a legitimate purpose and does its job well because it’s not damaged or corrupted, then you will have an optimized system with fewer files stored in the cloud.
Utilizing a good Mac cleaning software is like hiring a professional cleaning service to keep your home sanitary and tidy. The program works quietly in the background to protect your Mac from junk accumulation, saving you time and money. The question is which software is best for your computer, and we have six that we highly recommend.
6 Best Mac Cleaners
The top 6 best mac cleaners are listed below. Each mac cleaner was chosen for being safe, effective, and easy to use.
1. CleanMyMac X (Best Mac Cleaner)
CleanMyMac can erase all the junk from your Mac within minutes. The app is designed to do three things for your MacOS:
- Clean – CleanMyMac eliminates language files, outdated caches, unnecessary localizations, hidden files, and incomplete or broken downloads. CleanMyMac X does the digging and is sophisticated enough to determine what is junk and what is essential.
- Optimize – A clean system runs better and demands less storage space. Keep your Mac from moving like a bloated dinosaur even if it is getting up there in age.
- Protect – Remove adware and malware plus worms and viruses that put your data and personal information at risk. You can also employ protection against ransomware, which is often an added expense.
CleanMyMac is the best Mac cleaner because it offers all three critical services with built-in safety features. For instance, the Smart Assistant will guide you through the cleanup process, and you will approve all files before they’re removed.
Read our full review of CleanMyMac for more information.
CleanMyMac X is the new and improved version of the original CleanMyMac. If you had the first version, you can upgrade to the X version with a 50% discount.
If you’re installing the program for the first time, you can download the software for free. To access the full capabilties of the CleanMyMac app, you have the option of paying a yearly subscription fee of $39.95 for one Mac computer or buying a lifetime license for $89.95.
To clean and protect multiple Macs, multi-system CleanMyMac licenses are available.
- Removes malware
- Ransomware protection included
- Easy to use
- Smart Assistant
- Reports app-specific disc storage information
- Price is prohibitory for some
- Advanced settings may take more time to learn
2. CCleaner for Mac
If you just want to clean your Mac without a ton of advanced options, CCleaner for Mac is the way to go. It’s one of the longest standing cleaners on the market and is backed by reputable developers who care about creating software that works as advertised.
CCleaner is a simple Mac cleaner, so it doesn’t come with ransomware protection and malware removal like CleanMyMac X and some other competing programs. It does come with some built-in security features, but has three primary goals:
- Clear Space – The more space you clear up on your hard disk, the faster your Mac will operate. CCleaner can clear 34 GB per year with around 4 GB cleared on the first run.
- Free Up RAM Space – You can expect to have more than 25% more free RAM after installing and running CCleaner for Mac.
- Accelerate Boot Time – Your Mac may boot more than 50% faster after first using this Mac cleaner.
Read our full review of CCleaner for Mac for more information.
You can download the app and access the basic MacOS cleaning and privacy protection feature for free. That’s a good starting point if you’re on a tight budget or don’t need the advanced features to optimize the performance of your Mac.
The Professional version of the app will cost you $24.95 per year for one computer. It works in the background to ensure you never run out of space and provides more thorough cleaning than the free version. It will also keep your apps updated and keep your browsing history private for greater security. One more benefit is the ability to detect and delete website trackers.
- Free version available
- Simple, easy to use platform
- Built-in privacy features
- Mac version still in beta
- May not work with all browsers
- Ransomware and malware protection not included
MacBooster is a highly competitive Mac cleaner designed to boost MacOS performance through three main actions:
- Delete Junk – The cleaner can eliminate up to 20 types of files that are known to slow your system down.
- Remove Malware – Malware is designed to track your online activity for the benefit of marketers. It can clutter your system, slowing down operations as well as your startup time.
- Eliminate Viruses – Viruses, worms, trojans and other infections can do more than deteriorate your Mac’s performance. They can compromise your privacy and exposure your personal and professional information to hackers and other criminals.
We consider this one of the leading Mac cleaners because it detects and removes duplicate files as well as outdated, unneeded and malicious files. It doesn’t protect you from ransomware, but it will catch and remove adware, spyware and other dangers.
Read our full MacBooster review for more information.
You can download MacBooster 8 for free, but you will need a paid subscription to fully access the software. The standard plan is the most affordable and will cost you $59.95 per year or less than $5 per month for one Mac. They offer regular discounts, so that price can drop much closer to $35 per year and as low as $3.33 per month.
To protect up to three Macs, you can choose between the premium and lite plans. The premium plan offers an annual or monthly rate while the lite plan allows you to pay $179.95 for a lifetime license. The lifetime rate is sometimes reduced to around $90 or less and could save you a lot of money if you plan to use the software for multiple Macs and years.
- Malware protection included
- Eliminates viruses
- Deep, thorough cleaning
- No ransomware protection
If you’re looking for an affordable Mac cleaner but don’t want to sacrifice efficiency and simplicity, it’s worth your time to check out DaisyDisk. It delivers a colorful map that displays not only the storage space available on your hard disk but on all attached storage devices as well. That makes it easy to identify large files that are consuming more space than they’re worth.
It’s fast and easy to click files from your map, review their contents and make the decision to delete or save. It takes just seconds for the software to scan many disks, so this isn’t an app that’s going to consume a lot of your time.
The app doesn’t offer advanced malware, adware, and spyware detection apps. It won’t protect you from ransomware or other serious threats, so make sure you’re also running a good anti-virus app.
After a free trial, the app will cost you just $9.99. You don’t have to commit to a monthly or annual subscription, making it one of the more convenient and affordable Mac cleaners available.
- Map design gives instant visual of all files
- Simple to use
- No advanced apps
- Easy to delete files accidentally
5. Disk Doctor
Disk Doctor is similar to #4 on this list in that it’s a simple disk cleaner without any advanced apps. Once it’s installed on your Mac, you will see a simple app that shows available and used space in the following six areas of your computer:
- Language files
- Mail downloads
You can run separate scans in each of these areas, and the software provides explanations of the junk files often found in each category. Disk Doctor does scan quickly, so it doesn’t take a lot of time to perform monthly or quarterly cleanups.
When comparing Mac cleaning software, keep in mind that a program like Disk Doctor will provide only a basic cleanup. It will remove some of the most common junk files that are known to slow down a MacOS, but they won’t deliver the more exhaustive deep cleaning that you will get with a more developed software program. You will also need a separate anti-virus program in addition to Disk Doctor.
You can download a free demo to try this software before you invest any money. With a price tag of just $9.99 for a lifetime license, you may want to just buy it and give your Mac a cleanup right away. This is the most affordable Mac cleaner app available today, and you don’t have to worry about ongoing monthly or annual payments.
- Easy to use
- No learning curve
- Not as thorough as more developed apps
- No advanced apps
6. Drive Genius
Drive Genius is one of the more comprehensive Mac cleaning software programs available today. It includes 18 features designed to perform three critical actions:
- Clean – Eliminate those junk files while taking advantage of premium features not available with most competing apps. Easily adjust partitions and assign icons to files for improved organization. Completely eliminate unwanted files so they don’t keep coming back to clutter your MacBook. Many competing programs cannot completely delete all files.
- Protect – Drive Genius includes malware detection and removal, but that’s just the beginning. Seven additional features allow you to detect and fix corrupted files, correct file errors and rebuild some lost files.
- Boost Performance – Drive Genius can defragment your Mac and keep it clean for improved speed and overall performance.
Much of what is offered with Drive Genius isn’t available with most of the other apps on this list. If you’ve ever dealt with corrupted files or drive errors, you know they’re difficult if not impossible to repair without significant technical knowledge. This cleaning program may save you a trip to a repair shop, but expect a learning curve as you figure out all of the advanced settings.
We recommend starting with the free Drive Genius demo to make sure you will use the advanced version. The standard license covers two Macs and up to five drive recoveries for a one-time fee of $79. The professional license costs $299 annually but allows activation on unlimited Macs plus unlimited drive recovery.
- Standard license covers two Macs
- 18 features included
- Advanced capabilities not offered with other apps
- 100% file deletion
- Drive recovery included
- Price is prohibitory for some users
- Not the easiest program to use
This is the most up-to-date edition of MacKeeper. MacKeeper 5 features enhanced functionality, a redesigned interface, and an easier-to-navigate interface. It makes no difference whether you’re a Mac novice or a seasoned pro—MacKeeper is simple to use.
MacKeeper is an all-in-one application that includes a slew of built-in Mac cleaning utilities for removing garbage and obsolete files that are clogging up your Mac’s storage. Additionally, you receive an antivirus, duplicate finder, ad blocker, as well as a range of other privacy-related utilities as a bonus.
There is a “Find & Fix” section that allows you to quickly monitor the status of your Mac’s disk space, security, and overall performance.
The Auto-scan function in MacKeeper is also supported by default. Thus, you do not need to set a reminder or schedule for MacKeeper to scan your Mac for problems as MacKeeper does so in the background.
As an added bonus, MacKeeper includes an integrated “Update Tracker.” This program scans your Mac for obsolete software and updates it as needed.
You can also uninstall apps and delete their leftover files with MacKeeper’s “Smart Uninstaller” method.
8. Drive Genius
Drive Genius is a software suite that allows you to perform comprehensive disk diagnostics. It’s difficult to think of something this program doesn’t do. You can search for viruses, encrypt files, and change the icons — it’s like having hundreds of apps in one package. The hunt for data corruption and anomalies on your drive is possibly what sets Drive Genius apart. If you have an older Mac, Drive Genius will make it easier to keep it in good shape.
Only a few tools, including the DiskPulse utility, are included in the free edition. This is an automated Mac maintenance analyzer that will notify you if your hard drive is about to crash. Unlike other Mac cleaners that only search, it can also fix disk damage, making it a real deal. Be aware that a hard drive scan will take a long time, however the results are well worth the wait. Drive Genius’s most recent update, launched in 2020, includes long-awaited compatibility with macOS Big Sur.
9. Mac Washing Machine
Intego’s Mac Washing Machine is a Mac cleaner that makes it simple to remove junk and duplicate files that cause your Mac to slow down. It has three distinct but complimentary functions. It detects duplicate files and allows you to monitor your workspace by scanning for unused or outdated files which can be removed. You can easily access all functionality and quickly get your Mac performing more smoothly thanks to the app’s intuitive interface.
The Intego Mac Washing Machine software is stylish in general. If you’re shopping for an app to help you organise your hard drives and eliminate duplicates, it’s worth a look. However, there is no support for quick-look for file previews, and the trial version of this software can only perform the first steps of each feature. You’ll find a shortage of choices once more.
You can see how each stage of its scanning process works, though you’ll have to spend $29.99 for an unlimited license to get some real features.
Onyx is free software that performs various maintenance tasks, some of which can help your Mac run faster. It checks the integrity of your system files, rebuilds caches and indexes, and removes a variety of junk files.
It also modifies many aspects of your Mac’s actions, including animation effects, file and folder visibility, and more. However, most of it is very specialized and not something that ordinary users will benefit by.
However, unlike other Mac cleaners, Onyx does not search your machine. Other than that, you select which caches and directories to clear, but it does not inform you whether they contain anything or whether clearing them will free up space.
Onyx allows you to perform a variety of advanced activities, including script execution and access to UNIX manual sites. These are obviously intended for professionals, and a few of them can even hurt your Mac if you’re not careful.
11. MacCleaner Pro
MacCleaner Pro is a set of six apps designed to help you clean and increase the performance of your Mac. It includes tools for locating and deleting redundant files and directories as well as merging similar folders. Additionally, it can securely and fully uninstall applications.
The Memory Cleaner utility can free up idle RAM in order to improve efficiency. ClearDisk is capable of clearing the cache and deleting junk files. Disk Expert will evaluate the disk space use and identify the largest files and folders, while Funter will discover secret files and folders.
12. Disk Clean Pro
Another useful cleaning and optimization program is Smart Mac Care. It’s a Systweak Software product that runs on Macs operating OS X 10.9 and above.
This tool’s scan features allow it to clean up fragments of junk files on your Mac. There’s a Junk Scan, a Privacy Scan, a Malware Scan, and a lot more. During these scans, the program identifies files that should be deleted, assists in the resolution of privacy problems, and detects malware.
Smart Mac Care features an elegant design that makes the app simple to use. With just a few clicks, you can monitor the optimization and cleanup process.
13. Disk Drill
Disk Drill is a well-known specialty data recovery tool for Mac that also includes valuable disk cleaning features. The software will analyze disk usage and identifies various types of files for cleaning. It also keeps track of the storage device’s health and sends out prompt warnings if anything goes wrong.
The software’s main focus is data recovery, despite the fact that its cleanup tools are very extensive. Data loss on a Mac can be caused by a variety of factors, including accidental deletion and data corruption. Disk Drill can help you recover the data. It is available in a free or paid Pro version.
MacClean is a dependable and powerful method for restoring your Mac computer. Rather than deleting every junk file in one go, MacClean offers five different cleaning choices. The options for system cleanup are called Internet Junk, System Junk, Privacy Issues, Security Issues, and Malicious Cookies.
Most of the time, you’ll choose the the System Junk option because it removes device and user garbage. Cleanup Tools, found under utilities, will help you get rid of duplicate files. A duplicate finder is also included in this software. There are many ways to get rid of junk files on your Mac.
Are Mac cleaners safe?
That is dependent on the Mac cleaner software chosen. Some Mac file cleaners and device optimizers, like Advanced Mac Cleaner, are not safe, so choose wisely and don’t download the first app you see. Having said that, all of the Mac cleaners discussed in this list are completely safe and reliable.
Our Mac cleaner reviews range from simple, affordable programs that will provide a basic cleanup to well-developed cleaning software equipped with the latest features for cleaning. DaisyDisk and Disk Doctor are the cheapest Mac cleaners with the most basic features while Drive Genius is the most elaborate in terms of comprehensive tools.
We included other programs like CCleaner for Mac because we know that mid-range is where many users feel most comfortable. When picking the best cleaner for your Mac, look at the features offered and assess how many of them you’re likely to use. For those that don’t have the time or desire to learn a more complex system, perhaps a more basic program would be the best fit.
For a thorough deep cleaning plus some protection against viruses and malware, we highly recommend CCleaner for Mac. Go with CleanMyMac for extra protection against ransomware as well. These programs are affordable for many individuals and businesses while offering some advanced features that go beyond eliminating junk files temporarily.
Remember, most of these cleaner apps do have free versions. If you have a sluggish Mac but can’t invest even a few bucks per month, this is the best way to go. You can always upgrade to the paid version or switch to another Mac cleaner entirely when you have the financial power to do so.
What’s important is that you start cleaning your Mac right away. The longer you wait, the more junk you accumulate and the harder it becomes to thoroughly clean. Greater performance and faster startups await you.