Best Kodi Skins
Since 2002, Kodi has been downloaded over 50 million times. This awesome piece of free and legal software helps to convert almost any device into a home entertainment center.
Hook up your Kodi device to a Smart TV, and you can access thousands of legal and third-party addons to watch as much content as you could ever need.
In this guide, we will tell you what a Kodi Skin is and why changing them can freshen up your Kodi experience. Step by step guide to change your Kodi Skin, factors to help you choose the best skin, and our round-up of the best Kodi Skins.
What is a Kodi Skin?
If you are already familiar with Kodi you will recognize the standard business blue Kodi skin uses as a default called Estuary. It’s easy to navigate but not very exciting.
A Kodi skin simply changes the way that Kodi looks and how you interact with. This could be the background image, cover art for media, information displayed for titles, menu, and a host of other settings in each of your addons.
How to Change Your Kodi Skin
There are 3 ways to change your Kodi Skin
- Install a Kodi addon with a custom skin
- Install a Kodi Build with a choice of custom skins
- Keep your addons and Builds and install your own skin
Option 1 and 2 are self-explanatory, and if you want guides on our favorite addons and builds you can find them here. <LINK>
But Option 3 is for the user who already has all the addons that they need and just fancies a fresh new look for Kodi.
Here are step by step instructions to change your Kodi Skin only:
- Open up Kodi and from the Home Screen go to Settings
- Click on Interface
- From the left-hand menu bar click Skin, then click Skin again on the right. If you are still using the default Kodi Skin, it will be set to Estuary
- A pop-up window will appear, if you have no other skins you will just see Estuary for touchscreen and Estuary skin by phil65 (The default Kodi skin)
- Click “Get More”
- You’ll see a list of 45+ skins to choose from, our favorite we’ll cover in the Best Kodi Skins list
How to Pick the Best Kodi Skin For you?
If you’ve never chosen a Kodi skin and feel overwhelmed by the choice, then our guide is here to help. We cover all kinds of skins, and before you worry about picking the wrong skin, it couldn’t be easier to replace skins.
Just a few things to bear in mind:
- Visuals or no Visuals: Most skins separate between strong visuals and big icon menus. Go for a skin that suits your visual style and functions for a user’s
- TV our touchscreen: You need very different skins if you are using Kodi on a touch screen, we cover 3 on our list but most are for use on a TV
- 4K/HD or SD: Some skins like Chroma are specially designed for 4K, while most are HD, think about the quality you are looking for
- Low CPU or High CPU Kodi device: If you are running Kodi on a Low CPU device like a Firestick, you may want to go for a minimal skin, which isn’t so heavy on images. Otherwise high def skins can make your Firestick laggy
- Mouse or Point and Click: Many skins do not work well with a mouse. So, go for a skin that can be navigated using a point and click remote like on a Firestick
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- Geographically restricted content like Netflix and Hulu can be unblocked.
A VPN works be replacing your ISP-assigned IP address and creating an encrypted tunnel. We recommend the no log service offered by IPVanish. It works well on a Firestick and offers the fastest possible speeds.
The Best Kodi Skins
Just like addons with so many skins to choose from, here are our favorites, allowing you to shorten the list of top choices. Be aware some skins may only work with Kodi 18 (Leia) while others will work with both Kodi 17 and 18.
We start off with skins that work on both Kodi 17 and 18, some skins may have slight style changes in their versions between the two versions of Kodi.
By far the most popular skin on Kodi. Perhaps because it sits at the top of the list, who knows. This skin follows the minimalist design of Estuary, but just not quite as boring.
Featuring a bold black menu strip which is popular in many Kodi addons, there are no other icons to clutter up the screen, and you get a lovely striking visual background. You also get time and date along the menu bar.
The background can be altered from several set images loaded with the theme, or you can upload your own images.
Importantly Aeon Nox has stayed popular because it has multiple levels of customization as well as being lightweight. Meaning it will work great on a Firestick.
Bello is about as minimalist as you can get, with the simple white outlined menu on a black background. Don’t expect a lot of customization, but for users who like the minimum fuss then this is the skin for you.
One important note is Bellow does not interact well with a mouse. It’s a great choice though for point-and-click remotes like the Firestick. Choose Bello if you want minimum design and fuss.
Box like Bellow is another design without a background image, just solid color. Its got some lovely iconography, so each menu item is represented as a clean-looking block. The menu can be added to or taken away which we found handy because many times default menus gives us a lot of categories we may never use.
Box offers a good level of customization for the home screen while keeping the design minimal.
You might recognize Confluence from several top Kodi addons. Its been around for several years and provides a great middle-of-the-road solution, depending on how flashy or simple you want the design to be.
Starting with Confluence you get a black screen, a black strip menu running horizontally across the center of the screen, and a blue menu writing with drop-down categories.
Nice and simple, but unlike Box and Bellow you can add a background image. You can add or take away buttons on the menu and change the background graphic to display the cover art of the title that is now playing.
A good skin, that works on all kinds of devices whether its point and click or with a mouse.
Eminence is one of the newer skins on our list and gives a crisp design that is reminiscent of macOS and those.
The slanted bottom icons have been ripped directly from the LG TV operating system, but the designers have kept the same fluidity and ease of use.
The menu items appear on a bottom tab, and the block icons can be added to or taken away. You can set your own background image, as well as Home icons to appear on the rest of the screen.
The whole design is slick and crisp, and you have a massive amount of control for customization, with almost every setting up for grabs.
Pellucid is a lot like Box. Also, this is our top skin if you are running Kodi on an old or slow Android device, as its one of the few skins that you can set to “Low CPU Power Mode”
It lacks when it comes to customization and you get 4 basic categories to start off with. Doesn’t really offer the same versatility and slick design we see with other designs. But it gives you the bare minimum.
Unlike Bellow, you do get a random background image.
Revolve is a lovely theme, which brings a unique spin to your Kodi. The menu is displayed as a revolving disc. The menu items, color, and background images can all be modified at will.
You can also set images to fade and emphasize certain menu items in an innovative way. Revolve is a beautiful Kodi skin with a unique take on the Kodi experience.
Rapier is a great minimal skin which unlike others out there is completely customizable. You start with a simple minimal bottom menu and no background. But everything can be tweaked and changed.
Add or take away menu items as well as subcategories, giving you a great range of freedom, to make the menu serve you.
FTV was designed with the Firestick in mind. The style and font of the menu items will remind you of the Firestick menu. It’s incredibly minimalist and you won’t even get time and date.
Best not used on a small screen, as some items can be illegible. When you highlight a menu item, others will fade out of focus.
Great for being lightweight, but not a lot of customization. What you see is what you get.
Another unique designed Kodi skin. Xperience 1080 uses a Panel menu design, like Windows 10. So, unlike a strip menu or a revolver, you can add and remove blocks from the menu.
You also get a high level of customization, so while being lightweight it also delivers almost every setting to be changed. Due to the panel nature of the menu, there is no central image.
A great-looking clean and simple skin. Start off with a large font bottom menu and a simple background image. You get a good level of customization and though the look is strongly classical you get some modern features like click and hover which shows you what is in certain menu items and categories.
A big plus for many users is that this skin gets regular updates and new features added.
This is a great skin for users who don’t want to mess around with customization and settings. Sometimes you just want a skin where the hard work is done by other fans.
The skin starts with a big font left-hand vertical menu and a strong background image without transparency. You can then alter the addon simply using settings and images uploaded by other users.
A great addon for strongly visual users who love fan art and minimum fuss.
This is one of the best Kodi skins for movie lovers. You get a simple pictographic bottom menu and top image.
What sets it apart from other skins, is that with Adonic, when you click on movies the cover art pops up in a menu above the main menu and you easily see all the key information about the movie you want to watch, like the year, cast, rating and more.
Lovely-looking emblems and a fresh design for those who want a minimal but arty design with easy drill down to subcategories and item details.
Black Glass Nova
A beautiful-looking skin for users who want High Definition images and menu icons. The menu is a simple bottom, but you also get awesome HD images in the background as well as large icons for content art to give a great user experience.
Worth noting that due to the nature of the content quality this skin might be a bit laggy on slower CPU devices like the Firestick.
The best Kodi skin for those using Kodi on a touch screen device. Most users will use Kodi on a TV screen through a device, but some of you might watch Kodi through your phone, tablet, or touchscreen computer.
Estouchy has been specifically designed for touch screen users. With giant easy-to-click menu buttons, clear cover art, and large icons for navigation.
If you are using a touch screen use Estouchy. No other skin comes close for feel and user interface.
You’d be fooled into thinking this was just a slight adaptation of Kodi’s default skin Estuary, but Mimic has a lot more to offer.
First off there is a greater level of customization, with a large font bottom menu in blue, you can easily view a sliding carousel of titles in categories, which display the details at the top of your screen.
A great lightweight skin that works well on Firestick.
A stunning addon with a large slide-out menu on the left-hand side, and a simple middle section to see titles of content in menu sections. Overlaid on an HD background image.
In the black and yellow it’s visually striking on a large screen, great for those who want a fan or cover art to take center stage on their Kodi skin.
The best Kodi skin out there for users who want a skin specifically designed for an Ultra HD or 4K Tv. Chroma has been set for HD images and fonts, with clear and crisp lines.
The skin itself is simple with clear lines, a simple menu and category sections, and a strong faded background image.
Not a skin for Firestick users, as these images and fonts are going to be CPU heavy.
A great-looking skin for a first-time Kodi user. The big difference from other skins is you will find the menu at the top. With most of the space taken up by titles and cover art.
You also tend to get more space for the highlighted title cover art, content details, and blurb, which is often missed on other addons.
Pretty like Netflix in some respect, giving you all the information, you need to decide if you want to watch a title, without having to click into the cover art and then go back to the category screen.
A cool-looking skin that brings a fresh look to your home screen. The background image really takes center stage here, and the menu on the left-hand side has no differentiating lines with the image, so merges into it.
Big and easy to navigate, with easy-to-navigate horizontal title tiles when you punch up each category. Also, highly customizable with a strong development team behind it. So, Grid is getting regular updates and new functions.
Only available on Kodi 17, this was one of our favorite skins. The reason being it’s one of the only skin which uses Google’s Material Design. Some years ago, Google introduced a method of web design that created clear and easy-to-use elements and sections.
Unity is beautifully clean and highly customizable. A clear middle horizontal menu on top of a striking background image, with an unlimited number of icons and sections that you can add to the home screen for fast navigation.
Each section is card-based, and easy to scroll through.
This is the ideal skin, for users who want a soft interface and the concentration to really be on the menu and sections.
Nebula has a soft grey overlay on an image, with clear card icons which can be navigated surrounded by vertical menu and section lines.
This skin is also customized for touch screens and is great for simple navigation using large icons. Scales well on the touch screen.
Offers good customization as well as great compatibility with HD TVs, but this is still lightweight enough to work well on the Firestick.
This is the ideal skin for a data junkie, who wants to know exactly how much content they must hand.
For many, the home screen may be overcrowded with a clear central image, and on the right-hand side, you get a summary of the numbers of movies, TV Shows, artists, albums, and much more that you have on hand in your library.
The menu sits on the left-hand side, with an updated news section, showing you your latest episodes that have been added.
Great addon for an information junkie, probably a bit overwhelming for everyone else. But you can easily customize the home screen and make it simpler or denser.
Arctic: Zephyr 2
A great addon for users who just want to view all their titles in easy to navigate card format showing cover art and nothing else. Artic has delivered an incredibly polished and beautiful skin, with a simple menu and silver background.
The emphasis is on the cards of titles available in each section and is reminiscent of Amazon Prime Video or Netflix.
You can also switch between an image and a text-based list. Also great for Live TV. Arctic delivers a beautiful TV guide.
A well-thought-out skin that has been going for a while and reached maturity in its execution.
Another great skin from the Aeon family, this skin offers a minimalist design with a translucent bottom menu based on a strong HD image. Easy to navigate sections and categories give you a simplified cut-down skin for those who want to concentrate on strong visuals.
Highly customizable and from a great pedigree, MQ5 used to be the most popular skin on Kodi until being replaced by its newer cousin Aeon Nox.
Think of ReFocus is the touch screen version of the default Estuary skin. This skin was specifically developed a while ago, to give Kodi users the best experience with touch screen devices.
But it offers the same simple and some would say boring interface as Estuary. Good for functionality, poor for looks.
The only skin to make the list was specially designed with iOS in mind. Namely operating Kodi through your iPhone or iPad, so not a skin for everyone.
Easy to navigate site menu, semi-transparent on top of a clear background image. Easy to navigate via touch screen. One big drawback is this skin has no facility for live streaming.
Best Kodi Skins for Kodi 18 (Leia)
The following skins will only work on Kodi 18.
Think of Aura like the improved Estuary. The slick tile-based design which you will find on a lot of Kodi addons. A menu appears horizontally on the left-hand side, and you can add and remove widgets, categories and sub-categories.
Good performance and lightweight, so ideal for any device
The latest offering from the Aeon team, we really love this fresh and minimal design. One of the only skins we have come across which comes with its own background theme music. You get a giant-sized bottom menu and high spec images. You also get a great level of customization to really change it to look however you want.
A great modern-looking skin for Kodi 18.
Quartz is a funny-looking skin because when you use it, to begin with, all you have is a few white menu buttons on a black screen.
The beauty of Quartz is they have given you a blank canvas so that you can design the skin however you like. You get the basic structure and can add menu items, categories, and sub-categories as well as widgets.
There are some limitations with the number of existing categories so not quite as open-ended as we would have liked but still exciting.
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