We tested more VPN services than we care to count. This means you don’t have to test all of them to find the one that is best suited for your Mac.
With a VPN app running on your Mac, you will be able to hide your online activity, stream Netflix from virtually anywhere, download files via BitTorrent anonymously, encrypt and protect private data from cybercriminals, bypass censorship rules, and much more. So yes, you should sign-up for a VPN service and get your privacy back.
Out of many, many VPN services we’ve tried – we came with the following list of best VPN services for Mac users:
- 5,000+ servers in the network
- Easy to use - install it and forget it
- One license is good for up to 6 devices
- Strict zero-logs policy
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Chrome extension is just a proxy
- You can't pay with PayPal
Its network includes more than 5,000 servers spread across 60 countries, which directly translates into faster speeds. NordVPN is also very secure, relying on the strong 256-bit encryption combined with secure VPN protocols (OpenVPN, WireGuard, IKEv2/IPSec). But as a user, you get a seamless experience with all this technology "doing its thing" in the background.
NordVPN is well suited to pretty much every task you throw at it — whether it's accessing a banned site from some country that filters out the internet, torrenting, accessing streaming services, or just wanting to keep a low profile on the web. It also doesn't keep any logs.
We highly recommend NordVPN to anyone looking for reliable service.
- Feature-rich yet easy to use
- One of the best VPNs around
- Strong no-logging policy
- Reliable support you can reach 24/7
- Limited number of servers in Africa and the Middle East
- Kinda pricey
ExpressVPN has great desktop apps for Windows and Mac, mobile apps and browser extensions. Also, it is well suited for video streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer and others.
However, what makes it stand out is its ease of use. We can't emphasize this enough. One could tell a lot of time has been spent making sure even the advanced features are easily accessible. And we love it for that. Plus, let's not forget ExpressVPN's speed which tends to leave other services in the dust.
- It's super fast!
- Works with Netflix, BBC and others
- Easy to use apps, browser extensions
- You can try it for free!
- Some advanced features are not configurable
- Not the best for high-censorship countries
Furthermore, thanks to the availability of browser extensions - Hotspot Shield is also one of our top choices for Chrome and Firefox VPNs.
Your privacy is equally well protected, with the software only collecting some anonymized that help continually improve its service.
There is one caveat though - it won't work in high-censorship countries like China. If you don't need that in the first place, we highly recommend Hotspot Shield.
As that's typically the case with most VPN services out there, the longer you commit - the better deal you get. However, what makes Hotspot Shield even better is the fact that it offers a 7-day free trial of its service. A few other top VPN providers do the same. Plus, its money-back guarantee lasts for 45 days, making for a risk-free purchase. Cause, you can always get your money back. Sweet and just the way we like it.
- One the best VPNs for torrenting
- Works well with Netflix
- Simple setup on all popular devices
- Strict zero-logs policy
- Doesn't work with BBC iPlayer
- Doesn't work in China
Its desktop apps are not among the prettiest ones, but they get the job done. The important thing is that installation is easy and straightforward, and that no logs are kept by the company.
When it comes to pricing, IPVanish is somewhere in the middle — it's not the most affordable option but also not the most expensive one. As noted, it will be most appreciated by heavy BitTorrent users, and — related — Kodi fans.
- Reliable download and upload speeds
- Works with Netflix and BBC iPlayer
- Strict zero-logs policy
- Lets you use it on unlimited number of devices
- Low number of servers in Africa and Australia
You can rely on it for streaming and torrenting, with included extra features like CleanWeb and MultiHop, delivering a that much better — and more secure — experience.
Surfshark, the company, is based in the British Virgin Islands and with its zero-logs policy makes for a powerful combo to anyone looking to keep its web whereabouts under the radar.
The service is easy to use and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
What makes the best VPN for Mac?
We first wanted to define some criteria before coming up with the list of Best VPNs for Mac. And so, we tested many services in different scenarios, including:
We wanted to see how a VPN handles torrenting. Does it have servers dedicated to P2P traffic or are all servers up for the task? Both solutions work for us, but in the former case – we like to see P2P-dedicated servers clearly marked on the list. Cause that makes for that much better user experience.
The main question to ask is – can you use a VPN for streaming from all the popular services? Do you get a buffer-free experience from different servers? Can a streaming service detect that you’re using a VPN — and, consequently, block your access? Are there servers dedicated to Netflix? There is a set of “sub-criteria” we have when determining whether some VPN is up for the task.
Can a VPN bypass your ISP’s restrictions? How about when connecting from a university campus? Can it get the job done without anyone knowing which sites you often visit? You don’t want a VPN that can’t handle the relatively simple school firewall, right? And the same goes for your workplace and other locations that may block parts of the Internet.
Related to the previous point – can a VPN be used in high-censorship countries like China, North Korea, Iran, Saudi Arabia, UAE, etc? The infamous Great Firewall of China is arguably the hardest to bypass, but the best VPNs can do it – and we love ’em for that.
Good for all your needs
Not all VPNs shite at all use cases, but we wanted to come up with a good list. So we decided to select those that are rock-solid for whatever you throw at them. In other words, the best VPNs for Mac let you access services like Twitter and Netflix from all around the world, while offering strong zero-logs privacy – which we like to see being confirmed in a third-party audit.
Speed & reliability
Last but not the least, we had to see what kind of speeds each of the VPNs can deliver. If the experience was too slow, we realize you can’t rely on it to access YouTube despite such an option being possible. Similarly, we wanted to test whether a VPN delivers consistent download and upload speeds. Cause, in some cases, that reliability is even more important than speed.
There are free VPNs, but…
…we don’t suggest them. At all.
Building a solid server network requires a lot of money, which is something free services don’t have. And if they do, chances are they are getting that cash from selling their users’ data. This isn’t the compromise we’re willing to take as it effectively kills the point of getting a VPN in the first place.
Instead, you should get a VPN with a proven track record to work from everywhere, and that’s what this list of Best VPNs for Mac is all about.
Also, you’ll want to insist on getting a VPN with a money-back guarantee. So, if you determine that the service doesn’t work for you, there is an option to ask for a refund and try some other VPN. There is no need to throw away money like it’s nobody’s business. It’s your money and you should demand to get a solid service. Cause prices of all VPNs are rather similar — at max, we’re talking about differences of a few dollars per month. Your privacy and unlimited access to the Internet is worth more than that.
Get a VPN for your Mac for everything!
You (all of us, really) need a VPN for many things. In that sense, a good VPN will:
- Protect your privacy from the government and big corporations
- Bypass restrictions imposed by the government or various organizations
- Change your IP address so you get unrestricted access to Netflix, Disney+, iPlayer, HULU, and other video streaming services
- Encrypt and protect private data from cybercriminals
- Download files with BitTorrent anonymously
The top contenders that check all these boxes include the following: