Give your Mac's Menu Bar a retro makeover with this app — Lickable adds shadows and 3D effects missing since macOS Mountain Lion

Lickable MenuBar app
(Image credit: Future)

If you’ve missed the skeuomorphic design that went away in 2013 with macOS Yosemite, this app brings some of that back to the Menu Bar, and more.

Called Lickable Menu Bar, you can download the app for free from the Mac App Store, which gives you the option to transform the Menu Bar into how it looked in three previous macOS versions. Furthermore, you can have the app launch once you log in, so the look of the MenuBar will stay that way without having to prompt it.

Mavericks gives it a shadow, Catalina enables a flat style, and Glossy transforms the Menu Bar into a skeuomorphic look from 2004, much like Mac OS X Tiger. For those unfamiliar with Skeuomorphic, this design mimics real-world objects with depth and colors in a digital interface and was used heavily by Apple before 2013.

Lickable performs a simple task, but it does it well — however, it does make us wonder if the design tropes from macOS Tiger, such as skeuomorphism, should come back in some way.

Something old, something new — iMore’s Take

iMac Core Duo model from 2006

(Image credit: Future / Apple)

Trying out Lickable on my MacBook Pro, it took 30 seconds to change the look of my MenuBar to one that looks like 10.4 Tiger from 2004. Incidentally, that was the first version of Mac OS X that I ever used with my Intel Core Duo iMac, back in 2006 — so I was hit with a wave of nostalgia once Lickable did its thing.

I’ve always had a soft spot for skeuomorphism — mainly due to how good the design looked on my iPhone 4 in 2010. Granted, the flat design that came in iOS 7 and macOS Yosemite was needed, but it felt like some of the charm went away. That real-world look, especially when it came to the Calendar and Notes apps, really popped out on a Retina display — more so when the Retina MacBook Pro arrived in 2012, and all those textures looked crystal-clear on its 16-inch display.

Yet having an app like Lickable can help to bring some of that back to my Mac, as Apple is likely never bring that iconic look back. It does what it says on the tin — so if you’re curious to bring some shade to the MenuBar, try it out and see what you think.

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Daryl Baxter
Features Editor

Daryl is iMore's Features Editor, overseeing long-form and in-depth articles and op-eds. Daryl loves using his experience as both a journalist and Apple fan to tell stories about Apple's products and its community, from the apps we use everyday to the products that have been long forgotten in the Cupertino archives.

Previously Software & Downloads Writer at TechRadar, and Deputy Editor at StealthOptional, he's also written a book, 'The Making of Tomb Raider', which tells the story of the beginnings of Lara Croft and the series' early development. He's also written for many other publications including WIRED, MacFormat, Bloody Disgusting, VGC, GamesRadar, Nintendo Life, VRV Blog, The Loop Magazine, SUPER JUMP, Gizmodo, Film Stories, TopTenReviews, Miketendo64 and Daily Star.