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How to make Kodi look even better with a fresh new skin

Kodi

The default Kodi skin has always been designed to be user-friendly, perhaps sacrificing a bit of the eye candy in the pursuit of this. That's not to say it doesn't look sharp, the latest Estuary skin on Kodi 17 has it looking better than ever.

But part of the fun of Kodi is really making it your own, and if you'd prefer something a little different to look at, changing up the skin is easy. There are even some quickly available to get you going.

Here's what you need to know.

  1. On the home screen, select the gear icon to go to system settings.
  2. Select interface settings.

Kodi

  1. In the sidebar, select skin. This will open the skin settings.
  2. Select look and feel.

Kodi

  1. Click the Get More button. It's on the right side of the window.

Kodi

  1. Select a skin you like the look of.
  2. Click install.

Kodi

  1. Once installed, it'll ask you if you want to start using this skin. Click yes.

Voila! Your entire Kodi interface will now transform before your very eyes. If you ever want to go back to the default skin, simply follow steps 1-3 above, then choose the Estuary skin from the box.

The world of Kodi skins runs far deeper than what you'll find through the sources built into the system, though. As with most things Kodi related, there's a vibrant community of creators out there producing wild and wonderful skins.

You can install from third-parties by downloading the skin as a zip file and applying it that way, A pre-requisite to this is that you've enabled unknown sources in settings.

  1. Go into the Kodi add-on browser.
  2. Select install from zip file.
  3. Navigate to the local or network storage location of your skin's zip file.
  4. Select the downloaded skin zip file.
  5. Click OK.

Your skin and any associated dependencies will now install to your Kodi system ready for you to use.

Changing skins on the Xbox One

The version of Kodi currently available on the Xbox One is an alpha of version 18, Leia. Much of the detail above applies to the console as well, since Kodi's experience is consistent across the different platforms you can use it on.

There are current limitations though when using Kodi on the console. Right now, you can't interface with a USB device so there is no way to apply a new skin from a zip file since you can't download these directly to the console either.

The first section on using new skins available directly through Kodi's settings is fine, though, and hopefully, in the future we'll be able to hook into Kodi a little better on the console. It's still early days though.

If you're looking for new skins to catch your eye, the Kodi community forums are a great place to start. And if you've got a particular favorite, drop us a line in the comments with the what and where to get it.

Updated January 3, 2018: Added information on how to change the skins on Kodi on the Xbox One v18 alpha.

Richard Devine is an Editor at Windows Central. A former Project Manager and long-term tech addict, he joined Mobile Nations in 2011 and has been found on Android Central and iMore as well as Windows Central. Currently you'll find him covering all manner of PC hardware and gaming, and you can follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

12 Comments
  • I really like the Cirrus Extended skin, sadly enough it's not yet available for the latest verion of Kodi. So for now i'm stuck on Kodi 16
  • I like Estuary, but I LOVE Mimic!
  • I use arctic.zephyr for me nothing comes close to this one for creating your own look.
  • Estuary is such a good step forward from the previous default. I had been using xperience1080 for the longest time, since it worked well as a controller-only interface.
  • As far as customization goes, my go-to is Aeon mq6. Sadly, that isn't yet available for Krypton. However, I have yet to try some of the other skins mentioned in the comments section here. It says a lot that almost every comment has a different skin as a preferred choice. Makes me want to try out a new one. 
  • V17 has an awfully ui, haven't found a device it works well on yet maybe I'll have to give these ski s a try
  • Yep - couldn't agree more. I gave Kodi a try for first time ever recently and frankly found it so ridiculously baffling I gave up.
  • Finally settled on the Titan skin myself, it's super configurable. A lot of the problem with most Kodi skins is they get abandoned and become incompatable with the next point release. Very frustrating at times.
  • Anyone managed to get Airplay working with Kodi on Xbox One? It's in the settings but there's xbone specific instructions on the 'net and I can't get it showing.
  • From what I've read most options are not working. Alfa release!
  • Managed to get my custom build and custom skin on the Xbox One version of Kodi (re-coded from Titan) so I'm a happy chappy!
  • This is my first time with Kodi and its a little ......frustrating or confusing. It totally changes my feel of my pc. Guess i just don't get it. I will keep playing around but so far its not good to me.