How to clean MacOS – best tools and apps

What can you do to scan your Mac’s disk and clean up the junk you’ve accumulated over the years? Here are 7 paid macOS cleanup apps that we think are worth checking out.

The more you use your Mac, the more it will accumulate files and other data. The bulk of this information you really need: documents, photos, videos, and so on. At the same time, there’s also unnecessary data that just clogs up your device, slows it down, and takes up space needlessly. For example, videos and memes from Telegram channels, screenshots from three years ago and other nonsense.

Luckily, there are plenty of programs that are specifically designed to clean up your Mac and clean up your disk. So what to choose from right now?


MacKeeper has a couple of tricks in its arsenal that other Mac cleaners don’t have. In addition to the standard cleaning and optimization that can speed up your Mac, MacKeeper offers real-time antivirus protection and a built-in VPN.

Another interesting feature is IT Theft Guard. Simply enter your email address and MacKeeper will let you know if your account has been discovered in collections of hacked data found on the Internet.

MacKeeper also contains a memory cleaner, an update tracker, a duplicate search tool, a smart uninstaller, and the ability to customize autoload items. The program has a smart scanning feature called Find & Fix. It scans your device for security, cleaning, privacy and performance issues and subsequently helps you fix them.

Editorial Team Experience:

In our case, MacKeeper found 13.46 GB of junk, plus duplicate files and data left over after uninstalling apps.
That’s less than the competition, but MacKeeper doesn’t search for large files and doesn’t automatically include your entire downloads folder in its search results. It also found 12 outdated apps and various security issues, including that our email address was linked to some kind of data leak.

MacKeeper is not a bad all-in-one solution for macbook security, maintenance, and optimization.

Supported Mac’s and Pricing:

  • MacOS versions: OS X 10.11 or later.
  • Price: $10.95 per month for one device;
  • $71.40 per year for one device or $89.40 per year for three.
Built-in VPNNo search for large files
ID theft protection
Real-time antivirus protection

CleanMyMac X

CleanMyMac is a popular Mac operating system cleaner and anti-malware utility with tons of features. Recognizing and removing junk in the system itself, CleanMyMac also searches for junk files among photos, email attachments, iTunes, and the Recycle Bin.

Like MacKeeper, the program has a Smart Scan feature that combines cleaning, protection, and acceleration.

Editor’s Experience:

In our test, CleanMyMac offered to remove 17.09 GB of system trash, plus junk files from the recycle garbage can and some email attachments.

You can also speed up your Mac with CleanMyMac thanks to the optimization and maintenance features that are part of the program. There’s an application uninstaller, tools for managing extensions, and secure removal of sensitive data. Similar to DaisyDisk, it lets you see what your disk space is taking up while using a clear and easy-to-use graphical interface.

On the security side, CleanMyMac offers a malware scanner and some basic privacy features. These are nice additions, but the main focus is still on cleaning and optimization.

Specs required and price range:

  • MacOS versions: OS X 10.10 or later.
  • Price: $39.95 for one device per year, $79.90 for two devices per year, $199.75 for five devices per year. Or one-time purchases: $89.95 for one device, $179.90 for two devices, $449.75 for five devices.
Pros Minuses
Large selection of tools No VPNNo VPN
Disk space visualization
Lifetime license

Cleaner One Pro

Cleaner One Pro is an application developed by cybersecurity company Trend Micro. Its Junk Files search tool can detect a wide range of junk data on your Mac, including caches, language files, old updates, unused disk images, and log files.

In addition to cleaning, Cleaner One Pro has some additional features. These include large file finder, duplicate search, autoload manager, file destroyer for safe data deletion. There is also a disk space visualization tool that gives you a graphical representation of all the files on your Mac. This means you can quickly identify what exactly is taking up space and delete that data.

The Smart Scan feature allows you to combine these tools: you can choose which types of scans to include.

Our Experience

By taking full advantage of the Smart Scan feature, we were able to free up 53.7 GB of space, of which 19.5 GB were unnecessary files.

Cleaner One Pro doesn’t include any security features, but it nevertheless reliably handles the cleanup. The ability to customize the Smart Scan function is especially nice. Cleaner One Pro isn’t as tricked out as its competitors above, but it’s great for the task at hand.

Compatibility and price:

  • MacOS Monterey.
  • Price: $19.99 per year for one device, $59.99 dollars per year for five devices.
Pros Minuses
Customizable Smart Scan featureNo security features
Disk space visualization toolNo VPN
Affordable price


Until recently, the Mac cleaner CCleaner looked a lot like its Windows counterpart. Last year, it was relaunched to resemble an updated version of Avast Cleanup Premium. The new CCleaner has the same set of tools with the same layout. Even the message text in some of the popups is the same.

This is probably because Avast bought Piriform, the developer of CCleaner, in 2017 and is now simplifying its product lineup. In this article, we’re talking about CCleaner instead of Avast since it’s a bit cheaper.

Editor Experience

CCleaner finds unused files, junk, and cached data that can be safely removed from your Mac’s disk.
In our test, CCleaner found 64.29GB of unnecessary files. That’s where log files, app and download caches, and large files came in, which was most of them.

Of the additional tools, CCleaner includes an app uninstaller, a duplicate search tool, and a tool to find low-quality or similar images. Users also have access to automatic browser history cleanup and automatic recycle garbage can cleanup. In addition, CCleaner can search for junk in the browser – in our case, it handled Firefox, Safari, Chrome and Brave, but not Vivaldi.

CCleaner has no security features. So if you want to run a virus scan, VPN or something similar, it’s worth considering other options. Plus, the Mac version of CCleaner has noticeably fewer features than the Windows version.

Requirements and price:

  • MacOS versions: OS X 10.11 or later.
  • Price: $29.95.
Pros Cons
Free version with basic cleanupNo VPN
Pretty low price No security features
Finds low-quality and similar images Fewer features than the Windows version


DaisyDisk isn’t so much a Mac system cleaner as it is a tool to help you decide how to free up space and perform basic maintenance yourself. It scans a disk or folder (whichever you choose) and then reports the location and size of each file and folder.

The scan results are illustrated with a color-coded chart showing the largest folders. The larger the segment in the image, the larger the contents of that folder. As you expand from the center, the segments get smaller but do not change color, so you can find large files or folders in other folders.

Clicking on any segment of an image will open the same one, working on a similar principle. This way you can keep exploring the contents. This not only helps you to quickly find files that you might want to delete, but also looks nice.

Unlike the other programs on this list, DaisyDisk doesn’t automate file deletion or promise to speed up your Mac. Its job is to help you quickly see what’s taking up disk space so you can delete things manually.

Support Mac’s and price:

  • MacOS versions: OS X 10.5 or later.
  • Price: $9.99.
Pros Minuses
Easily finds large folders and filesNo other fucntions
Easy to useSimilar tools can be found in other apps
Low price with one-time fee

Disk Doctor Pro

Disk Doctor Pro is essentially the big brother of Disk Doctor, a small but respected disk cleaner that can be purchased from the App Store for just $2.99. They’re similar in many ways, but the Pro version is more powerful and makes it easier to view and analyze scan results.

Our Experience

Disk Doctor Pro cleans caches, temporary files, and logs.
The scanning started as soon as we launched the program. In our case, it was prompted to clear 53.35 GB. This included downloads, large files, screenshots, installation packages, and unused apps.
While its competitors can do the same, they don’t always include this data in their scan results.

Disk Doctor Pro is a well-built utility at a great price, but its features are very limited. There’s also a sense that it’s not much better than the cheaper version, despite costing three times as much. Still, its price is less than $10, so if you need a budget trash cleaner for your Mac, this is a good option.

Just don’t expect anything special from the program like security, optimization or privacy features or one-click cleaning.

MacOS version and pricing:

  • MacOS versions: OS X 10.9 or later.
  • Price: $9.99.
Pros Cons
Low price No security features
Quality basic cleanup No free trial version
Doesn’t do much else

MacCleaner Pro

The main features of MacCleaner Pro are Speed Up Mac acceleration, Clean Up Mac cleaning, and Manage Disk Space. Acceleration options include freeing up RAM and disabling autoloader items. Disk Space Manager lets you see a list of all your files and folders and their size so you can quickly free up space on your Mac. Finally, MacCleaner Pro cleans system caches, installation files, downloads, and more.

Editorial Experience

In our case, we were asked to clear 44.2 GB of files. Of these, most were downloads, 10.8 GB were installation files, 1.37 GB were language files, and 8.49 GB were cached data.

The PRO Tools suite includes a duplicate search tool, an application uninstaller, and a disk space analyzer that replicates its DaisyDisk counterpart, right down to the graphics and animations.

MacCleaner Pro also has two helpers, mini-apps that launch from the menu bar. Funter helps you find hidden files, and Memory Cleaner is responsible for just what its name implies.

Overall, MacCleaner Pro offers a good set of tools to clean and optimize your device. However, it doesn’t offer anything in terms of security or privacy, so you should keep that in mind if it’s important to you.

MacOS to run app and prce:

  • MacOS versions: OS X 10.11 or later.
  • Price: $44.95.
Pros Cons
One-time fee No security or privacy features
Good selection of cleaning tools No VPN
Acceleration tools

What you need to know about cleaner apps for macOS

Here are some questions that need to be answered:

Do Mac cleaners really work?

Mainly, Mac cleaner is designed to help you free up space on your device. It finds unnecessary files that would take much more time and effort to find manually. Plus, on older Macs, deleting these files can noticeably improve performance.

Can Mac cleaner slow down my device?

If you have an older Mac, using heavy cleaning programs can slow down your system if you put them in the background. However, nothing will happen to most Macs, as cleaning programs generally don’t have serious system requirements.

Are Mac cleaning programs safe to use?

When dealing with anything that finds and deletes files, there is a risk of accidentally deleting something important. This can cause system instability or other problems. However, specialized programs with automatic cleaning features, like MacKeeper, distinguish which files are unnecessary and which are not.

Which Mac cleaner is the best?

Which Mac cleaner is best for you depends on your needs and budget. Some are looking for a free tool for occasional cleaning – some need a multi-functional solution. Either way, there are plenty of options.