Windows 10 icons like Recycle Bin get a new look — and they're kind of ugly

Windows 10 new icons
(Image credit: Microsoft)

Say bye-bye to Windows 10's old designs! Microsoft tweaked the visuals of your favorite icons. In a Windows Insider blog post published today, the Redmond-based tech giant announced that it has rolled out a preview build of Windows 10 that includes the new icon makeovers.

The Recycle bin icon got spruced up and folders like Pictures, OneDrive, Desktop, Documents and Downloads received facelifts, too. 

Which Windows 10 icons are getting revamped?

Microsoft is tweaking the icons you'll find in File Explorer. Why is Windows 10 getting an iconography transformation? Well, Microsoft says it wants its icons to have more of a seamless, consistent and modern look.

"Notably, the top-level user folders such as Desktop, Documents, Downloads, and Pictures have a new design that should make it a little easier to tell them apart at a glance," Microsoft's Amanda Langowski and Brandon LeBlanc wrote.

In addition to the Desktop, Documents, Downloads and Pictures folders, the Local Disk and Recycle Bin icons are getting a new look, too.

New Windows 10 icons

New Local Disk and Recycle Bin icons (Image credit: Microsoft)

Microsoft also showcased the new icons for the OneDrive folder.

New OneDrive Windows 10 icon

(Image credit: Microsoft)

The Redmond-based tech giant's icon rejuvenation of Windows 10 are small tweaks for the most part: a little orientation change here and a slight visual change there. However, the Pictures Folder underwent a massive transformation and I'm not sure how I feel about it. Our staff writer Sean Riley joked that the icon looks like it belongs on a Star Trek uniform.

New Pictures folder icon Windows 10

New Pictures folder icon Windows 10 (Image credit: Microsoft)

I love the Pictures folder icon with the manila folder and landscape photograph; it always gives me a glimmer of joy before opening it up to my massive collection of personal photos. Now, the new Pictures folder looks like a blue wallet with a pretentious minimalist design of a mountain and sun — at least, I think that's what the triangle and circle represents? 

In any case, Microsoft doesn't care what I think. These Windows 10 icons will likely stick around and the company plans on making more changes to other icons in the future. "As you can imagine, there are a lot of icons in Windows 10 and more icons will continue to get updated over time," Microsoft said.

Windows Insiders can now enjoy these newly updated icons as Microsoft rolls out the new Windows 10 test build. Non-beta users, on the other hand, may have to wait until Microsoft releases the next version of Windows 10 (known as "Sun Valley") in the fall of 2021.

Kimberly Gedeon

Kimberly Gedeon, holding a Master's degree in International Journalism, launched her career as a journalist for MadameNoire's business beat in 2013. She loved translating stuffy stories about the economy, personal finance and investing into digestible, easy-to-understand, entertaining stories for young women of color. During her time on the business beat, she discovered her passion for tech as she dove into articles about tech entrepreneurship, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and the latest tablets. After eight years of freelancing, dabbling in a myriad of beats, she's finally found a home at Laptop Mag that accepts her as the crypto-addicted, virtual reality-loving, investing-focused, tech-fascinated nerd she is. Woot!