How to Hide the Recycle Bin from the Desktop in Windows 11: A Step-by-Step Guide

Tired of seeing that Recycle Bin icon on your desktop every time you turn on your Windows 11 computer? Want to declutter your workspace and hide the Recycle Bin icon? It’s pretty simple to do, and I’m here to guide you through it. By the end of this article, you’ll know exactly how to make that pesky icon disappear from your desktop.

Step by Step Tutorial: Hiding the Recycle Bin in Windows 11

Before we dive into the steps, let’s talk about what we’re going to do. We’re going to access the desktop icon settings and uncheck the Recycle Bin. That’s it! It’s a straightforward process that will take just a minute or two.

Step 1: Open Desktop Icon Settings

Open the Settings app by pressing Windows key + I on your keyboard, then navigate to Personalization and select Themes.

When you open the Themes section, you’ll see several options related to your computer’s appearance. On the right side, you’ll find a link to the Desktop icon settings. This is where you can choose which icons appear on your desktop.

Step 2: Uncheck the Recycle Bin

In the Desktop Icon Settings window, find the Recycle Bin and uncheck the box next to it.

By unchecking the box, you’re telling your computer that you no longer want the Recycle Bin to be visible on your desktop. It’s as simple as that. Once the box is unchecked, click Apply, and then OK to save your changes.

After you’ve completed these steps, the Recycle Bin will no longer be visible on your desktop. Don’t worry, you haven’t deleted the Recycle Bin itself; you’ve just hidden the icon. You can still access the Recycle Bin by searching for it in the start menu if you need to recover or permanently delete files.

Tips for Managing the Recycle Bin in Windows 11

  • Remember that hiding the Recycle Bin doesn’t delete its contents, so make sure to empty it regularly to free up space.
  • You can also create a keyboard shortcut to access the Recycle Bin if you prefer not to have the icon on your desktop.
  • If you change your mind and want the Recycle Bin back on your desktop, just follow the steps again and recheck the box.
  • Keep in mind that hiding the Recycle Bin might confuse other users who share your computer, so make sure they know how to access it another way.
  • Customizing your desktop by hiding unnecessary icons can help make your workspace feel less cluttered and more personalized.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I can’t find the Personalization section in Settings?

If you’re having trouble finding Personalization, make sure you’re on the home page of the Settings app. You can also search for "Themes" directly in the Settings search bar.

Can I hide other icons on my desktop the same way?

Yes, the Desktop Icon Settings window allows you to hide other system icons such as ‘This PC’, ‘Network’, and ‘User’s Files’.

Will hiding the Recycle Bin icon affect its functionality?

No, hiding the icon won’t affect how the Recycle Bin works. You can still delete and restore files as usual.

How do I access the Recycle Bin after hiding it?

You can type "Recycle Bin" in the start menu search bar or pin it to your start menu for quick access.

Is there a way to delete the Recycle Bin permanently?

The Recycle Bin is a crucial part of the Windows operating system and cannot be deleted. However, you can hide it and ignore its presence on your computer.


  1. Open Desktop Icon Settings.
  2. Uncheck the Recycle Bin.
  3. Click Apply and OK.


So there you have it, a simple and effective way to hide the Recycle Bin from your desktop in Windows 11. Not only does this help in making your desktop look cleaner, but it also might make you feel more organized and focused. Remember, hiding the Recycle Bin doesn’t delete it or its contents, so you can still access it when needed.

If you’ve followed the steps I outlined, your desktop is now Recycle Bin-free, and you’ve taken one more step towards personalizing your computer to your liking. Feel free to play around with the Desktop Icon Settings to further customize your desktop’s appearance. Who knows, you might find a setup that works even better for you.

As always, it’s important to stay informed about how to best use and customize your computer. Whether you’re a power user or just getting started, understanding the ins and outs of your operating system can help you work more efficiently and enjoy your digital life to the fullest. So go ahead, give your desktop a fresh new look, and keep exploring all that Windows 11 has to offer!

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