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Facebook Messenger for Android gets dark mode: here's how to enable it

Facebook Messengers dark mode is now open to Android users, but it's still in development, and there's a trick to its activation.

Published onMarch 4, 2019

Facebook Messenger for Android has received an experimental dark mode feature after it was first hinted at last May (via Android Police). The feature arrives following several other recent dark mode app developments as Google prepares for native dark mode support in Android Q.

Though the functionality is said to be available to all users, it’s a work-in-progress and comes with a somewhat unconventional activation method.

Long-awaited Facebook 'clear history' tool coming sometime in 2019

Here’s how to activate dark mode in Facebook Messenger:

  1. First, you’ll need to send a yellow crescent moon emoji to somebody (yes, seriously). Important note: Not just any old moon emoji would work. The specific, faceless crescent moon seen in the images above is the correct one (I feel like the dark moon might have been more appropriate but I’ll get over it).
  2. This will prompt a shower of moons to fall across the screen followed by a pop-up saying the feature can now be enabled.
  3. You’re not quite done yet. Finally, head to App Settings and you’ll find a Dark Mode toggle. Tap on it to turn it on.
  4. That’s it! Keep in mind that once you’ve activated the feature it will forever stay in App Settings, making it easy to turn back off and on.


The dark mode is present in most menus, making them a little easier on your eyes if you’re viewing at night. The functionality doesn’t appear to be available in Facebook Lite yet, but we’ll let you know when we spot it there too.

Give it a try and let me know what you think of it in the comments!

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