5 Ways to Get a Moving Wallpaper for Your Mac

By Perry Published March 30, 2023

5 Ways to Get a Moving Wallpaper for Your Mac
5 Ways to Get a Moving Wallpaper for Your Mac

Personalize your Mac with a touch of pizzazz! A moving wallpaper is a perfect way to spruce up and customize your computer. Make it truly unique by exploring different options for obtaining an eye-catching, lively background - follow our guide today and put some personality into that desktop display!

Moving wallpapers can mean a variety of features. Mac desktops can hold the following types: dynamic wallpapers, live wallpapers, and animated GIF wallpapers. But there are various ways to get those wallpapers on your desktop and screen saver, and we'll be discussing the many ways how to apply them on your Mac desktop!

Keep up-to-date with the latest live wallpapers by checking out our 8 Best Live Mac Wallpaper Apps for 2023 article.

Key Takeaways

  • Using animated images as your wallpaper can be a fun and unique way to personalize your Mac desktop. But it's important to consider potential downsides such as distraction and decreased performance of your device.
  • The five ways to get moving wallpapers as your desktop background is by using any of the following: built-in dynamic wallpapers, animated GIFs, video wallpapers, live wallpaper apps, or making your own live wallpapers.

Pros and Cons of Animated Wallpapers

Give your Mac a splash of personality with the dynamic design of moving wallpapers! Just remember that such an enhancement comes with some advantages and disadvantages to consider before donning it on your desktop.


  • Using a live wallpaper on your Mac can be a fun and unique way to personalize your desktop.
  • It can make your Mac's desktop screen fresh, engaging, and lively.
  • There are many different options for dynamic wallpapers, from simple animations to more complex and intricate designs.
  • It can be a great way to showcase your personality and style.


  • An animated desktop wallpaper can be distracting, especially if the animation is complex or flashy.
  • Live wallpapers can use up additional system resources, which can slow down your computer and drain battery life.
  • Poorly optimized moving desktop backgrounds can lag or stutter, frustrating, and distracting.
  • Using a live wallpaper may not be ideal for those using their Mac for work or school, as it can decrease productivity.

5 Simple Ways to Add a Moving Wallpaper

Whether you're on the latest MacBook Pro or MacBook Air, there's always a way to get you moving wallpapers that often come completely free. With our five easy methods, you can get stunning, lively new wallpapers for your desktop or screensaver in no time!

Method 1: Use Built-in Dynamic Wallpapers

One of the easiest ways to get an animated background on your Mac is to use the free Dynamic Wallpaper feature that comes with macOS. These dynamic desktop wallpapers change throughout the day to match the time of day and can be a great way to add some variety to your desktop.

To set up a dynamic wallpaper on your Mac, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the Apple menu and select System Preferences.
  2. Click on Desktop & Screen Saver.
  3. Click on Desktop.
    • Or click on the "Screen Saver" tab to get an animated screen saver.
  4. Choose the Dynamic Desktop option from the list.
  5. Select the dynamic desktop wallpaper you want to use.

Method 2: Use Animated GIFs as Wallpaper

Spice up your Mac with an attention-grabbing animated GIF wallpaper! Get creative and add some movement to the mix for a unique desktop experience.

There are plenty of apps available that can help you make this happen, such as the popular favorites: GIFPaper and Convert - GIF & Live Wallpaper. Unleash your creativity with some eye-catching visuals to set yourself apart from everyone else using the same boring desktop background.

  • GifPaper: A lightweight app that converts GIFs into MOV or MP4 files that can be set as live wallpapers on Mac. It offers customizable settings for speed, playback, and loop options.
  • Convert - GIF & Live Wallpaper: A wallpaper app available on the Mac App Store that allows you to easily convert your favorite GIFs into live wallpapers for your Mac device. The app also supports multiple displays, so you can enjoy your animated wallpaper across all your screens, desktop and mobile alike.

Trying adding a GIF wallpaper on your Mac device today following our How to Make a GIF Your Wallpaper on Mac article.

Method 3: Use Video as Wallpaper

If you're looking for a more immersive way to get a moving wallpaper on your Mac, consider using a video as your wallpaper. This can be a great way to add some life and energy to your desktop.

To use a video as your wallpaper on your Mac, follow these steps:

  1. Download and install the free VLC media player.
  2. Open VLC and go to the "Preferences" menu.
  3. Click on "Video" and select "Output Modules."
  4. Choose "macosx" from the list of options.
  5. Click on "Save" and exit VLC.
  6. Open the video file you want to use as your wallpaper in VLC.
  7. Go to the "Video" menu and select "Set as Wallpaper."

Method 4: Use Live Wallpaper Apps

Upgrade your desktop experience with captivating, live wallpapers! Mac users have access to an incredible selection of live wallpaper applications – ranging from tranquil nature scenes and urban settings to abstract designs that come alive. Transform the way you view your screen by adding dynamic visuals for a truly unique custom look.

Here are a few popular live wallpaper applications for Mac:

  1. Live Desktop: A live wallpaper app that offers a variety of high-quality live wallpapers, including nature scenes, space-themed backgrounds, and inspiring background pics.
  2. Live Wallpapers HD & Weather: A popular live wallpaper app for Mac that offers a wide selection of live wallpapers that include weather information. Live Wallpapers HD & Weather updates the desktop pictures according to the current weather and time of day with its weather widget, providing a visually stunning and informative display for your desktop.
  3. iWallpaper: A free live wallpaper app that allows users to set dynamic and moving wallpapers on their desktops. It features an impressive collection of high-quality wallpapers, including 3D and abstract designs, and allows users to customize the speed and direction of the animations.

Method 5: Make Your Own Live HD Wallpapers

Finally, take your desktop to the next level by customizing it with personalized live wallpapers! Easily make your own wallpapers using awesome pictures, videos, or third-party applications and websites - a great way to add an extra bit of creativity.

Here are a few popular third-party wallpaper tools for Mac:

  1. Dynamic Wallpaper Club: Unleash your creativity with the Dynamic Wallpaper Club! Also known as the free Dynamic Wallpaper Creator, this web-based tool allows you to create dynamic wallpapers from scratch or modify existing ones. Upload your own images, determine transition times, and share dynamic wallpapers among a vibrant Mac user community - it's all within reach at this one-of-a-kind site.
  2. Dynaper: A desktop app you can download from the Mac app store. It allows you to create custom live wallpapers using your own images or videos. It offers various customization options, including adding particle effects and audio.

Spruce up Your Mac with Unique and Dynamic Moving Wallpapers

In conclusion, there are a variety of ways to get moving wallpapers for your Mac, including built-in dynamic wallpapers, animated GIFs, video wallpapers, live wallpaper apps, and making your own live wallpapers. While animated wallpapers can add personality and visual interest to your desktop, it's important to consider potential downsides such as distraction and decreased performance. By weighing the pros and cons and following the steps provided in this article, you can find the perfect moving wallpaper for your Mac and make it truly one-of-a-kind.