While notifications are purpose-built to ‘notify’ of things that may require immediate attention, you will agree that they often dive a little too deep and become distracting. If you’re a busy person yourself, you’ll be able to relate, not to mention those pesky iMessage notifications that fill up your notification center in no time.

how to clear all notifications on mac

Thankfully, macOS gives you the option to clear all notifications at once. Not just that, you can choose the notifications to never greet you again by turning on focus routines, enabling Do Not Disturb mode, or straight up disabling them. Let’s begin!

Where Do Notifications Appear on Mac?

If you don’t know where the notification banners are hidden after the greeting, there are three ways to reveal their hiding place – your Mac’s notification center. In the first method, swipe two fingers from the right edge of your MacBook’s trackpad or Magic Trackpad. The Notification Center should wipe inward from the right edge of the screen.

open notification center

For the second method, you can simply click on the right part of your Mac’s status bar. In other words, clicking on the date or time icon in the upper right corner will bring up your Mac’s notification center.

click on date/time to reveal notification center

Alternatively, you can set up Hot Corners to display your Mac’s Notification Center with a simple swipe gesture. If you set this method up correctly, it is the most efficient way to access your Mac’s Notification Center and clear all notifications.

  1. Open Spotlight Search by pressing command + space.
  2. Type Hot Corner Shortcuts and hit return. Alternatively, you can search for the same in your Mac’s settings.
    hot corner shortcuts
  3. Choose your preferred corner and open the corresponding dialog box. The top right corner should be an obvious choice since that’s where the Notification Center is located, but you can choose a different corner if you like.
    hot corner settings
  4. Select Notification Center from the dropdown menu.
    select notification center

Clear All Notifications From Notification Center

Once you have access to the Notification Center using the above methods, you will probably see your notifications in the following way. However, the method to delete all notifications is the same for all types.

1. Individual App Notifications

If you haven’t received multiple notifications from a single app, you’ll see them as single banners. Also, if multiple apps send a single notification, you’ll see it as a single banner under the app’s header. If you hover over the notification and click the cross icon, they’ll be disabled.

clear individual notifications

2. Stacked Notifications

When you get multiple notifications from a single app, macOS puts them in a single section by creating stacks. You can expand these stacks by clicking on them. You can delete a single notification by unfolding the stack and clicking the cross icon next to the notification you want, or you can delete all notifications from that app by clicking the “Delete All” option when you hover over the main stack.

clear all notifications

The Show Less icon groups the notifications back into one stack. It also stacks multiple app notifications under their respective app headers to avoid confusion.

3. Multiple Stacked Notifications

If you have a lot of widgets in your Mac’s notification center, subsequent stacks get hidden to save screen estate. Clicking the icon below the last notification reveals the hidden notifications, which can be dismissed similarly. Hovering the stack allows you to clear all notifications of that particular app, whereas revealing the stack lets you dismiss specific alerts.

multiple stacked notfications

Disable App Notifications Altogether

Apps that constantly send notifications can sometimes be very annoying. The best way to deal with such apps is to revoke their permission to send notifications.

  1. Open Spotlight search by pressing command + space.
  2. Type Notifications and hit return. You can also access it via your Mac’s settings page.
    search for notifications using spotlight search
  3. Choose the app you want to turn off notifications for.
    select apps to disable notifications
  4. You can turn off notifications entirely by clicking the main toggle. Alternatively, you can edit how the notification is delivered.
    disable app notifications

Turn On Focus Routines

Focus Mode on Mac is convenient if you don’t want to be disturbed for a specific duration. Not only that, Focus Modes can be scheduled, so you need not turn it on manually during office or school hours, for example.

  1. Open the Quick Settings toggle in the status bar.
    open quick settings
  2. Select Focus.
    open focus
  3. Turn on Do Not Disturb by clicking on it or select from the other two options as needed.
    do not disturb

Focus modes can be further tweaked by accessing the Focus Settings. Moreover, you can add new focus routines and edit existing ones from the same page.

focus mode settings

Clear All Notifications With Ease

Yes, it’s that easy to get rid of annoying notifications. While clearing them away works most of the time, you can very well turn off notifications altogether once they start getting on your nerves. Do not disturb is an effective way to stay undisturbed during work or school hours.

FAQs about Notification Management on macOS

1. Where do I access notifications from?

All notifications are located in your Mac’s Notification Center, which you can access with a two-finger swipe from the right edge of the trackpad or by simply clicking on the date/time in the upper right corner of your screen.

2. Why do some notifications get grouped and some don’t?

macOS groups multiple notifications from a particular app into a single group to make them more manageable. Such groups are called Stacks and can be opened by clicking on them.

3. Can I turn off notifications altogether?

Yes, you can turn off notifications for a specific app by following the steps below –

  1. Open Settings and search for Notifications.
  2. Select the app you want to turn off notifications for.
  3. Turn on the toggle to never see notifications from that app again.
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