You may be among the lucky few who already have dark mode in Microsoft Paint

Dark mode in Windows Paint
(Image credit: Microsoft)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft has been testing a dark mode for Paint in preview for the past several months.
  • Recently, it was confirmed that dark mode is rolling out to general users of Windows 11.
  • The rollout is gradual, so you may not have the option to switch Paint to dark mode at this time.

Microsoft Paint enthusiasts waited 37 years to receive a dark mode for the creative application. Now, that wait is over, at least for some. After months of preview testing, Microsoft Paint's dark mode is rolling out to everyone. Since it's a gradual rollout, you may not have access to the option just yet, but it's on the way.

Twitter user PhantomOcean3 spotted dark mode on the general version of Windows 11 last night. A response to that thread on X by Microsoft's Brandon LeBlanc confirmed the rollout.

"Assuming by stable you mean retail/non-Insider - it's rolling out but not yet available to everyone yet so your VM isn't being weird, just not lucky enough yet to get it," said the Microsoft Senior Program Manager from the Windows Insider Program team.

Microsoft Paint has been around since the days of Windows 1.0 in 1985. Amazingly, the app has not received a dark mode until this year. The program doesn't receive major changes that often. For example, the promised ability to center the canvas still hasn't arrived, even though it was announced ages ago.

Paint will default to your system settings when it comes to dark mode or light mode, but you can set the app to a specific mode that differs from the rest of your PC.

While Paint is surpassed by other creative apps in terms of power and technical capabilities, it has an enthusiastic following. At one point, Microsoft was prepared to ditch the classic version of Paint in favor of a modern Paint 3D application. Following public backlash, Microsoft changed its decision.

Microsoft Paint | Free at Microsoft Store

Microsoft Paint | Free at Microsoft Store

This fan-favorite app lets you create all sorts of artwork on your PC. It's been around for 37 years, and it now features a dark mode.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at