10+ Best Free And Premium WordPress Admin Themes For A Customized Dashboard

Tired of looking at the same boring old WordPress admin theme?

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Ok, there’s nothing wrong with the default WordPress dashboard styling. But sometimes you might want to get a little bit more creative for yourself, your users, or your clients (if you’re building websites for other people). That’s where WordPress admin themes come in.

Despite the name, WordPress admin themes are not actually themes in the WordPress sense of the word. Rather, they’re plugins that you install on your site to change the style of the WordPress admin screens.

We’ve already covered some neat tweaks that you can do to the WordPress admin, including how to customize WordPress admin pages and customize or hide the WordPress toolbar.

But in this post, we’re going to focus almost entirely on looks (though some of these WordPress admin themes let you tweak functionality as well).

Ready to get started? Here are 10+ of our favorite WordPress admin themes for 2018.

10+ Best WordPress Admin Themes 2018

These are in no particular order, but I will cover the free admin themes first before diving into the more full-featured paid themes.

Whenever I can find a free version of the admin theme, I’ll install it on a test site to show you how it looks on a clean install. And I’ll also note if there are any special configuration steps you need to take (most don’t require any configuration, though).

1. Flatty

wordpress admin themes flatty

If you love flat design, Flatty is the WordPress admin theme for you. It reskins your entire WordPress admin area using flat design principles.

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Beyond reskinning, it also:

  • Changes the style on the WordPress login page to also use flat design
  • Adds Google Recaptcha to the login page
  • Lets you white-label the dashboard
  • Gives you the option of using a custom logo
  • Lets you hide widgets from the dashboard
  • Includes a new simplified top bar

Flatty starts working as soon as you activate it. But you can also further customize things by using the new Flatty option in your WordPress dashboard sidebar.

Price: Free

Get Flatty

2. Slate

slate

Slate is a popular WordPress admin theme that’s active on over 6,000 sites and has a stellar 5-star rating.

Whereas Flatty gives you lots of customization options, Slate pretty much just reskins your dashboard. There’s nothing to configure – just install it and enjoy the cool new slate styling you see above.

If you want a dark WordPress admin theme, this one is a great option.

Price: Free

Get Slate

3. Fancy Admin UI

fancy admin ui

Slate made for a good dark option, but what if you’re searching for a light WordPress admin theme? In that case, Fancy Admin UI might be more up your alley.

It gives you the airy blue theme that you see above.

I’m a big fan of this one as it’s really easy on the eyes.

If desired, you can also change the Admin UI primary and secondary colors by going to Settings → General. Other than that, you pretty much just activate the plugin and you’re good to go.

Price: Free

Get Fancy Admin UI

4. Aquila

material design dashboard theme

Whereas Flatty focused on flat design, Aquila uses another one of my favorite design trends – material design.

It completely reskins the WordPress admin dashboard and login page and also lets you:

  • Choose your own color scheme
  • Use your own logo

Beyond that, it also makes some other changes:

  • Renames “posts” to “blog” (you can change this back if desired)
  • Cleans up various dashboard meta boxes
  • Declutters the admin bar
  • Includes some new dashboard widgets
  • Cleans up the user profile area

This is the admin theme that the developer uses for client websites, which is a cool tidbit.

Price: Free

Get Aquila

5. Kodeo

new ux

Kodeo doesn’t make huge changes to the WordPress admin area in terms of color – it just cleans it up and redesigns a lot of the elements to improve user experience.

For example, many of the buttons are redesigned. And the theme also turns some options that were previously regular links into buttons to make them more visible (I’ve taken a screenshot of the editor screen as it does a good job of showing that).

If you’re already happy with the colors of the WordPress admin area and just want a redesigned user experience, this is a good one to check out.

Price: Free

Get Kodeo

6. Everest Admin Theme Lite (Or Pro)

evergreen

Everest Admin Theme is the first potentially premium WordPress admin theme on this list, though there is a lite version at WordPress.org which still gives you a good amount of functionality.

In the free version, you get to choose from 4 different pre-designed admin templates (the paid version ups that to 25).

Beyond that, you also get lots of customization options, including options to:

  • Choose your own background color for the whole dashboard or the menu
  • Hide various elements, like the admin footer
  • Add your own custom CSS
  • Customize the login page

The paid version also gives you control over hiding/organizing individual elements in your WordPress dashboard sidebar menu.

Price: Free for Lite version. $22 for the full version.

Get Everest Admin Theme LiteGet Pro

7. WPShapere

wpshapere

WPShapere is a popular premium option that gives you a huge amount of control over your WordPress admin dashboard.

It comes with 16 different pre-made templates and also lets you further customize things with unlimited color choices.

As a premium option, it also goes a lot deeper than just styling. You’ll also be able to:

  • Completely white-label the WordPress dashboard
  • Re-arrange or hide elements on the admin menu
  • Customize the admin menu by user role
  • Use your own custom labels and icons
  • Customize the login page
  • Add your own custom dashboard widgets

The themes look pretty great. And it’s also an affordable option as far as premium plugins go.

Price: $20

Get WPShapere

8. Ultra Admin

ultra admin

Ultra Admin is another popular premium option that’s available for sale at CodeCanyon. It ships with 34 different WordPress admin themes to help you get a custom admin area from day one. And it also lets you create your own admin theme if those pre-made templates aren’t enough.

Beyond that, you also get plenty more customization options. You’ll be able to:

  • Customize how your admin menus look
  • Customize the WordPress login page
  • Choose whether to include the footer
  • Use custom CSS if needed

All in all, another good option if you want to make full-scale changes to the WordPress admin area.

Price: $23

Get Ultra Admin

9. Pixo

pixo

Pixo is another WordPress admin theme with a nice airy feel to it. I like the look of the styling a lot – quite modern.

Like the other premium options, it goes beyond looks and also lets you customize your:

  • Login page
  • Admin toolbar
  • Footer
  • Menu

Price: $20

Get Pixo

10. First

One of the things that most caught my eye about First is it how redesigns the WordPress admin sidebar with those big icons. It looks great, and I imagine it makes things especially easy for clients who are a little less…tech savvy.

Beyond the new styling, you can also:

  • Add a custom logo
  • Change how the admin toolbar works
  • Customize the login page

Price: $21

Get First

11. Clientside

Clientside is a minimal WordPress admin theme that’s maintained a stellar 4.8-star rating over at CodeCanyon.

The look probably isn’t for everyone, but if you want to create a clean, de-cluttered experience for yourself or your clients, it’s a neat solution.

Beyond the “harmonious” design, Clientside also lets you customize which UI elements appear on a per user role.

Price: $17

Get Clientside

Which Is Your Favorite WordPress Admin Theme?

And that wraps up the best premium and free WordPress admin themes that I could find!

Which of these themes is your favorite? Personally, I love the flat design approach to the WordPress dashboard, but let us know your favorites in the comments. And if you know of a great WordPress admin theme that didn’t make the list, please share that in the comments, too!

Colin Newcomer

Colin Newcomer

Colin Newcomer is a freelance writer and long-time Internet marketer. He specializes in digital marketing, WordPress and B2B writing. He lives a life of danger, riding a scooter through the chaos of Hanoi. You can also follow his travel blog.

18 thoughts on “10+ Best Free And Premium WordPress Admin Themes For A Customized Dashboard

  1. Don’t find the styling of the Admin IFC not that important. I would have expected to also see some kind of restrictiveness in the WP menu (per role for example) … in case the client needs access to the insides of WP. And then the styling would be a big help in making the IFC more easy to use.

    Just my 5 cents.
    #justlemIT

  2. Blue Press is $12, not free.

    I appreciate seeing this list. I’ve been a fan of MP6 for some time, and I don’t any other freebies that tempt me.

    Lane

  3. In my opinion the MP6 plugin looks best so far, the other themes are small current wp-admin or MP6 variations only, well i do realize that what you can do with wp-admin in terms of design is very limited but still …

    • I do agree with you, but I must say that some go further than others when it comes to a “premium experience”. I’ve tried a couple from this list, and my favourite, undoubtedly, is Admin Infusion, because it is simple (MP6 based) – and now WP 3.8 based. This makes it very lightweight, but very powerful at the same time. Beauty in miniumalism if you like…

  4. Bookmarked these themes – very useful. MP6 looks a lot like the new WP 3.8 dashboard. I like being able to white label the dashboard for my company.

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  6. Impressive compilation with an average pricetag at $ 14 :), I wasn’t aware there was so many possibilities in the admin theme department.
    Thanks for the read.

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