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The best YouTube VPN

best youtube vpn
(Image credit: Sara Kurfeß)

We’ve all seen the message – This content is not available in your country – and we’ve all headed back to Google, only to find some grainy version on DailyMotion that’s not really worth watching at all. The solution is to use the best VPN – you'll be able to unblock region-restricted content as well as get around network blocks, all witha single click.

So, say you want to watch a movie clip for your Mass Communications class, but it’s not available in your country. All you need to do is switch on that YouTube VPN, select a server in the required country, and bingo – video accessed. Or, perhaps at your school YouTube is blocked altogether. That same YouTube VPN can evade network restrictions and get you watching where other people simply can’t.

What makes a great YouTube VPN?

The best streaming VPNs at a glance

1. ExpressVPN – The very best YouTube VPN

2. Surfshark – Super cheap and very functional

3. CyberGhost – YouTube VPN with great filtering options

4. NordVPN – Old favorite still performs well with YouTube

5. IPVanish – US provider can access YouTube with ease 

First things first, a YouTube VPN has to be able to access blocked content. Thankfully that’s not a huge task, as YouTube’s geo-blocking tech is weak compared to providers like Netflix and BBC iPlayer. Next, though, you’ll want to ensure you can get great speeds so you can make the most of HD and 4K content without being left buffering.

Then, seeing as nearly every VPN can access YouTube, it’s worth going for a service with rock-solid privacy credentials and user-friendly apps – if you’re going to get a VPN, you may as well get the best, right? That’s why we’d recommend ExpressVPN over all others. It provides seriously swift speeds along with great content unblocking (Netflix, iPlayer, and the rest, as well as YouTube), plus it’s all backed up by a watertight privacy policy.

However, there are plenty of options out there that might be a better fit for you, and now you know why you need a YouTube VPN, the only question is which one to pick. So, below we’ve rounded up our top five, starting with ExpressVPN. Just keep scrolling to find the best one for you.

  • Save some cash by checking out the best cheap VPN
  • No good for streaming, but there are decent free VPN services out there
  • PC users should get a Windows VPN, and Apple users need a Mac VPN

1. ExpressVPN – the very best YouTube VPN
When it comes to unblocking YouTube and accessing content worldwide, no VPN comes close to ExpressVPN. With searing speeds, over 3,000 servers in 94 countries and class-leading support, it's your best bet. You'll have a 30-day money-back guarantee, and you can now claim three months free.View Deal

2. Surfshark – the best-value VPN on the market
If you don't want to break the bank, at just $2.49/mo Surfshark is the cheapest YouTube VPN we'd recommend. With great speeds and serious security, it's reliable and effective. Plus, you'll be covered by a 30-day guarantee and be able to use the VPN on as many devices as you want.View Deal

3. CyberGhost – streaming powerhouse great for YouTube
With tons of dedicated streaming features, it's no surprise that CyberGhost features here. Server filtering and Smart Rules make for a great experience when using the app, and it works reliably behind the scenes, too. For just $2.75 a month it's great value, and offers a 45-day money-back guarantee.View Deal

The best YouTube VPNs today

ExpressVPN youtube VPN

(Image credit: ExpressVPN)

1. ExpressVPN

The best VPN for YouTube (and everything else)

Available on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Number of servers: 3,000+ | Other streaming services unblocked: Netflix, iPlayer, Amazon, Hulu, Peacock | Maximum devices supported: 5 | Money-back guarantee: 30 days

Reliably accesses YouTube
Great speeds
Top-tier 24/7 support
Powerful privacy 
Five device limit

If you’re looking for a YouTube VPN that you can trust and rely on, look no further than ExpressVPN. With excellent speeds, great streaming capabilities and intuitive apps, it should be your first port of call when searching for a VPN to unblock YouTube.

You’ll also get a strong privacy policy that’s been audited to confirm its no-log status, and AES-256 encryption will make sure all your data is kept safe and secure. Combine that with a wide selection of protocols and you’ve got yourself a powerful privacy solution that can not only access blocked YouTube videos but secure your whole digital life.

However, that’s no good if the apps are confusing to use, but thankfully Express’s clients – both desktop and mobile – are incredibly simple, even for the most inexperienced VPN user. You can get going in a single click and not worry about any settings, or you can open the hood and change settings to your heart’s content.

One of the few downsides to ExpressVPN is that it only offers five simultaneous connections. But, while that means you can only have it active on five devices at once, you can install it on any number and pick your five at any one time.

Overall, Express is the best YouTube VPN available today – and with great support and a 30-day money-back guarantee backing you up, you’ll be able to test out the service and make sure it’s the right choice for you before you commit.

Get three months free of the best YouTube VPN
Tom's Guide readers can claim three months of ExpressVPN absolutely FREE when they sign up to a 12-month plan – that's 15 months for the price of 12. Plus, with the 30-day money-back guarantee, you can test out the service for a whole month without any commitment.View Deal

Surfshark youtube VPN

(Image credit: Surfshark)

2. Surfshark

Bargain YouTube VPN that doesn’t scrimp on features

Available on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Number of servers: 1,700+ | Other streaming services unblocked: Netflix, iPlayer, Amazon, Hulu, Peacock | Maximum devices supported: Unlimited | Money-back guarantee: 30 days

Great streaming speeds
Unbeatable prices
Unlimited connections
Privacy policy short on detail

If you’re looking to spend as little as possible on a YouTube VPN but don’t want to sacrifice usability, Surfshark could be the right option for you. For less than $2.50 a month you can get one of the best services on the market without breaking the bank.

We’re not going to pretend Surfshark’s as powerful as ExpressVPN, but for YouTube unblocking and the vast majority of users it’s quite powerful enough, and it isn’t as bare-bones as you might expect. For example, you’ll get full AES-256 encryption, all the protocols you’ll need, and great streaming performance outside of YouTube, too.

One of the best things about Surfshark is its unlimited connections policy, which means you can cover every single device in your household with one policy. That adds serious value to an already excellent package.

However, unlike some of the competition, Surfshark hasn’t undertaken an external audit of its servers or clients – only its browser extensions. While this might not be an issue if you’re just looking to unblock YouTube, the privacy conscious might not be entirely happy.

However, for the price, Surfshark is a great option as a YouTube VPN, and certainly worth checking out.

cyberghost youtube vpn

(Image credit: CyberGhost)

3. CyberGhost

Streaming specialist is great for YouTube

Available on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Number of servers: 6,200+ | Other streaming services unblocked: Netflix, iPlayer, Amazon, Hulu, Peacock | Maximum devices supported: 7 | Money-back guarantee: 45 days

Very useful server filters
Great for streaming and torrenting
Huge amount of servers
Apps aren't the most polished

CyberGhost is well known for being one of the best VPNs for streaming, so it should come as no surprise that it features as one of our top YouTube VPNs. It provides pretty much all the features you’d expect from a premium VPN, but you’ll also get some interesting dedicated streaming features not found elsewhere, too.

When you open up the app, you’ll have the option to filter CyberGhost’s vast range of over 6,000 servers. That means if you want to stream, CyberGhost will shows you the best servers to use. You can also do this for P2P-optimized servers, which makes the service a great torrenting VPN, too.

If you’re streaming when you’re out and about, CyberGhost also offers a really useful data compression tool which reduces the amount of data you’ll use when connected to mobile networks. This can also be used for general web browsing, where the VPN will compress images and videos where possible to save you money and reduce loading times.

However, while it offers some really neat features, CyberGhost is let down a little by its apps and connection speeds. While by no means bad, compared to Surfshark and ExpressVPN its apps are a little dated, and connections aren’t quite as blistering.

That aside, though, CyberGhost is easily one of the best YouTube VPNs available, and should definitely be considered.

NordVPN youtube VPN

(Image credit: NordVPN)

4. NordVPN

Excellent privacy and streaming power

Available on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Number of servers: 5,400+ | Other streaming services unblocked: Netflix, iPlayer, YouTube, Amazon, Hulu | Maximum devices supported: 6 | Money-back guarantee: 30 days

Excellent privacy features
Unblocks YouTube and the rest
Useful kill switch
Not specialized in any area
Mobile apps are awkward

As one of the most popular VPNs on the market, NordVPN has made a name for itself as a go-to provider for unblocking streaming media, not least YouTube.

With a VPN server count currently standing at over 5,400, you can be sure of finding a quick connection in a location you need. Plus, with its incredible 2048-bit encryption and useful kill switch, you’ll be in safe hands when it comes to your personal privacy.

You’ll also be able to stream BBC iPlayer, Netflix, Hulu and more, and torrenting is also enabled on tons of servers so Nord’s a one-stop-shop for all of your VPN needs.

However, while it performs admirably in all areas, there’s nothing in particular that stands out when it comes to being a YouTube VPN. Although its apps are probably more user friendly than CyberGhost’s, it lacks the dedicated streaming functions, and can’t quite match Express’s power or Surfshark’s value.

That said, if you’re after a great all-round service from the biggest name in the business, NordVPN should be on your list of considerations.

ipvanish youtube vpn

5. IPVanish

US-based VPN offers great speeds and unlimited connections

Available on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Number of servers: 1,500 | Other streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, Peacock | Maximum devices supported: Unlimited | Money-back guarantee: 30 days

Unlimited connections
Reliably unblocks YouTube
Great speeds
Could be intimidating for newbies
No iPlayer access

IPVanish is an old favorite, and while it hasn’t quite kept up with the pack in terms of pricing and usability in recent years, it’s still a great choice for those who want to be able to change loads of settings and unblock YouTube.

With a classically techy interface – think Matrix-esque black-and-green scrolling data – it’ll certainly appeal to many, especially since almost all other VPNs are taking on softer, more newbie-friendly looks. That’s not to say IPVanish is tricky to use, though, as while the data might be intimidating, it’s just as plug-and-play as the rest on this list.

You’ll also have access to excellent speeds – especially in the US – plus IPVanish can unblock Netflix and Amazon Prime as well as YouTube. Brits be warned, however, as BBC iPlayer can’t currently be accessed. Still, though, it's one of the best streaming VPNs on the market.

IPVanish has recently introduced a fresh unlimited connections policy, so if you’ve got tons of devices you’ll be able to cover them all – and we mean that, as you’ll be able to download apps for pretty much any operating system or platform as well.

If you want a YouTube VPN that will display tons of data and let you change tons of settings, IPVanish could be a great option, but many will prefer the simpler look of those higher up on this list.

YouTube VPN FAQ

Who needs a YouTube VPN?

If you're a regular YouTube user you'll have run into videos that you can't access. While a VPN can't access videos that have been taken down (either because of the uploader or due to a copyright infringement), if you can't access a video because YouTube has restricted it to a certain country, a VPN can help.

So, say a music video by a niche British artist is only available in the UK and you're in the US. If you want to watch it, the only way is to use a VPN to spoof your location to a UK server.

Things get trickier when YouTube is blocked completely, perhaps at school or on a public Wi-Fi network. The solution is just as simple though – use a VPN.

A VPN will hide your traffic from the ISP, meaning it can't tell what you're watching and subsequently can't block it. Now you can use all the great content on YouTube to research your papers and exams at school (or, you know, listen to music at lunch).

How does a YouTube VPN work?

It's pretty simple, really.

Without a VPN, all your data – or traffic – is sent to and from websites by your internet service provider (ISP) through its own servers. This means your ISP can see exactly what your traffic is, and can place restrictions on what you access.

If you use a VPN, your traffic is rerouted through one of the VPN's own servers, encrypting it at the same time and making it anonymous. That means that while your ISP will be able to see how much bandwidth you're using, it can't tell what you're viewing.

With most VPNs you'll also be able to select where the server you're using is – maybe the UK, US, Italy or Singapore. Doing that will allow you to access content usually only available to people who live in those countries – also really useful if you're looking for a Netflix VPN.

What can a YouTube VPN do?

Other than protect your general privacy and anonymize your online activity, a VPN for YouTube can do a couple of really useful things.

Firstly, it can access videos that are blocked in your country. That means movie clips that are restricted, music videos that aren't distributed in your country and loads more.

However, you'll also be able to access YouTube on networks where the video streaming site is blocked entirely. This could mean when you're using the Wi-Fi at your school, college, or local library. That means you can access all the great content on YouTube to aid you studies – or just access to some tunes to help you while away a few hours.