If you're a Mac user then you are likely used to high quality software that just works, thanks to the way Apple operates. So if you're looking for a VPN, you'll definitely want one that has a similarly high quality performance. If you're still a bit unsure of what a VPN is used for or can do for you don't panic - just keep reading.
A VPN is used for many things, but perhaps the most important reason is security and privacy. You may want to protect your data while on unsecured Wi-Fi networks, such as in cafes, hotels or airports. You may worry that your internet service provider (ISP) is logging your browsing history.
The best Mac VPNs at a glance:
- 1. ExpressVPN
- 2. Surfshark
- 3. CyberGhost
- 4. IPVanish
- 5. NordVPN
Another major reason why VPNs are used is to bypass geographic restrictions to access online content. A VPN makes it look like you're logged on somewhere that you're not, by bouncing your location around the globe, so a great tool in all of those scenarios.
But, of course, there are lots of VPNs to pick from. That's why we've tested them, narrowed it down to the best for Apple Mac specifically and popped them below. While ExpressVPN is our overall top favourite (see why below) there are other options out there with the best ones listed below in all their glory. These are the best Mac VPNs...
The best 5 Mac VPNs you can get today
The best all-round VPN for Mac speed, unblocking and security
Number of servers: 3,000+ | Server locations: 160 | IP addresses: 30,000 | Maximum devices supported: 5
From all our testing, we reckon that ExpressVPN is the best VPN for Mac and, indeed, for pretty much everything else. That’s all thanks to its superb speeds, excellent 24/7 customer service support and wide compatibility across devices. The dedicated Mac app is excellent since it's straightforward to use, looks great and offers more depth if you need.
The 256-bit encryption over OpenVPN UDP with a kill switch and split tunneling are great too as you know everything working in the background to keep you super secure and anonymous.
Customer support is admirable, which makes you feel right at home from a Mac. This is available 24 hours a day, meaning you can login and ask someone directly and get an answer right away.
There's a limit of up to five devices using the service at once, which is more than Express used to provide. It's not as many as some but, since you are primarily getting this for your Mac and perhaps your iPhone, that shouldn't be too much of a hinderance.
Read our full ExpressVPN review
Get 49% off the best Mac VPN
Although you may begrudge paying to protect your Mac (they're supposed to be impregnable, right?), you can at least use ExpressVPN's 30-day money back guarantee to try before you buy. But if you do choose to sign up for a year now, you'll get 49% off the normal price and three extra months absolutely free!
Fast, lean VPN for your Mac
Number of servers: 1,300+ | Server locations: 75 | IP addresses: 40,000+ | Maximum devices supported: Unlimited
Surfshark may not be the best known name on the VPN block, but when it comes to protecting your Mac - and for less than the rest - then it's a very attractive option. Among it's numerous plus points are its choice of OpenVPN UDP and TCP, IKEv2 security protocols, watertight AES-256 encryption, double VPN hop, and an always ready kill switch. Those combined features add up to a VPN that's hot on securing your online identity when using your Mac.
If your choice of Mac VPN comes down to streaming rather than security, then Surfshark remains a fine choice. We found that it was well up to the task of unblocking Netflix catalogues in countries across the globe, and it even managed to unblock BBC iPlayer outside the UK - an achievement not matched by all its peers.
The cost is a big draw to Surfshark, too (good news if you've just splashed out on a new MacBook deal). You're looking at less than $2 per month if you take on a multi-year sub.
Head straight through to the Surfshark website
Excellent Mac-focused software
Number of servers: 5,800+ | Server locations: 110+ | IP addresses: N/A | Maximum devices supported: 7
CyberGhost says it's created its software specifically for Mac, making it even better at giving the best VPN experience on your machine. Thanks to over 5,000 servers in about 90 countries worldwide you get a lot of power behind that software too.
Thanks to a lack of logging, kill switch, and superb encryption you can rest easy knowing you're anonymous. Plus this is great at automatically finding the best server to suit what you're doing, be it watching Netflix, BBC iPlayer or browsing the web. It'll even block ads for you, stop trackers and avoid malicious websites – keeping your Mac safe.
While this software and the VPN offering is fantastic, there are a few glitches still, like reduced speeds from clogging and some awkward VPN navigation. But that should improve with time and software updates so this is still well worth a go on Mac.
Read our full CyberGhost review.
A VPN to match the power of your Mac
Number of servers: 1,300+ | Server locations: 75+ | IP addresses: 40,000+ | Maximum devices supported: 10
IPVanish's VPN experience is so slick and professional, it's easy to see why it features in so many 'best VPN' countdowns across the web (even if it's a bit more expensive than some of the competition). As well as a really easy to install Mac client, you also have the option to go rogue and use a manual set-up - for which the provider has handy tutorials - to tailor-make your VPN set-up.
IPVanish is certainly not short of features. Whether that's for security (e.g. kill switch, DNS, IPv6 leak protection, Scramble OpenVPN Traffic option, etc) or entertainment purposes (unblocking for services like Netflix, Sling TV, Spotify and YouTube), there's nobody that can say IPVanish isn't an all-singing all-dancing VPN service.
Read our full IPVanish review
Security, speed and simplicity
Number of servers: 5,800+ | Server locations: 55+ | IP addresses: N/A | Maximum devices supported: 6
NordVPN is one of favored VPNs in terms of security and speed thanks to its double encryption. That's a 2048-bit encryption, over 5,500 servers spread across around 60 countries. This is combined with strong DNS leak protection, two kill switches and excellent connection speeds. That means your Mac should always going to be secure when using this VPN.
The VPN client itself is a little on the basic side on both Mac and iOS but that's a great thing for beginners. Plus it gives you the clean finish that means a very speedy performance. So unless you want very in-depth features this is not such a bad thing.
Zero logging and a 30-day money back guarantee make for a very tempting VPN offering for a Mac VPN indeed.
Read our full NordVPN review.