Updated on: August 1, 2022
Short on time? Here’s the best VPN for Mac in 2022:
I tested many top virtual private networks (VPNs) to find the best VPNs for Mac in 2022.
A lot of VPNs only have strong security for Windows, some don’t work with certain versions of macOS, some come from cybersecurity companies with questionable ethics, and others are too slow, too challenging, or too expensive.
But there are a handful of really good VPNs for all Mac desktops and MacBooks. The ones that made it to this list include easy-to-use apps, offer excellent security features, provide fast speeds, work with Netflix and other streaming services, and are very affordable.
Quick summary list of the best VPNs for Mac (2022):
- 1.🥇 ExpressVPN — Best VPN for Mac users in 2022.
- 2.🥈 Private Internet Access — Strong performance with fast speeds.
- 3.🥉 ProtonVPN — Decent free plan for 1 Mac device.
- 4. CyberGhost VPN — Intuitive macOS app with plenty of features.
- 5. VyprVPN — Secure with fast speeds and a wide range of protocols.
- Bonus. IPVanish — Unlimited simultaneous connections.
- How to Choose the Best VPN for Mac in 2022.
- Comparison of the Best Mac VPNs.
- Top Brands That Didn’t Make the Cut.
- Frequently Asked Questions about VPNs for Mac.
🥇1. ExpressVPN — Best VPN for Mac in 2022
ExpressVPN is my favorite VPN for Mac users in 2022. It’s very secure, maintains extremely fast connection speeds, has tons of great features, and is really easy to use.
ExpressVPN includes plenty of standard security features like 256-bit AES encryption and a kill switch, but ExpressVPN also provides extra like split-tunneling (lets you choose which traffic you want to route through the VPN) and perfect-forward secrecy (a high-security feature ensuring the strength of its encryption).
ExpressVPN is one of the rare VPNs to provide split-tunneling for Macs. However, it only works on macOS 10.15 and below, whereas Private Internet Access has split-tunneling on all macOS versions. During my tests, I configured ExpressVPN’s split-tunneling settings to only allow uTorrent to use the VPN, allowing me to route my P2P traffic through the VPN while still browsing on my internet service provider’s network.
ExpressVPN also has:
- Strict no-logs policy (independently verified in 2019).
- Good VPN location (it’s based in the British Virgin Islands, which has strong data-privacy laws).
- Fastest speeds on this list (during my tests, my average connection speed drop was only 15%).
- Lightway protocol (this protocol is faster and more reliable than OpenVPN and IKEv2).
- Obfuscated servers that are able to overcome internet restrictions and firewalls.
One of the things I love the most about ExpressVPN is how well-designed and intuitive it is. The Mac app includes most of the same features as the Windows and mobile apps, and the Mac’s interface is simple to navigate.
ExpressVPN supports torrenting on all of its servers — and it works with all popular streaming sites, including Netflix and Hulu. But unfortunately, ExpressVPN’s browser extension for Safari no longer works. The company said it was working on an extension that would be supported on Safari 12, but the release date is still unknown.
While ExpressVPN is a bit pricey, it offers the best value on this list — and you can get it for $6.67 / month with our exclusive 49% discount. ExpressVPN backs each purchase with a 30-day money-back guarantee, and you can pay with a credit card, PayPal, UnionPay, AliPay, or cryptocurrency.
ExpressVPN is by far the best Mac VPN I’ve tested — it’s highly secure and is the fastest VPN on this list. It has standard security features like 256-bit AES encryption, a kill switch, and a strict no-logs policy, as well as extras like split-tunneling, perfect forward secrecy, and its own extra-fast and extra-secure protocol (Lightway). Because of its excellent speeds, ExpressVPN is great for streaming high-quality video without buffering, and it supports torrenting on all of its 3,000+ servers. ExpressVPN allows you to connect 5 devices, and all of its payment plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
🥈2. Private Internet Access — High-Security VPN (with Fast Speeds)
Private Internet Access (PIA) has excellent security features, really good speeds, and a feature-rich macOS app. PIA has servers located in 75+ countries, which prevents server overcrowding to help you maintain fast connection speeds.
While not as fast as ExpressVPN, in my tests PIA gave me some of the top speeds when I connected to nearby servers. I also got decent speeds on distant servers (with an average drop of 45%). And with all servers, I was able to stream and torrent with fast, reliable connections.
In addition to the standard security features (256-bit AES encryption, a kill switch, and a no-logs policy), PIA’s Mac app is fully open-source, and it comes with split-tunneling and an ad blocker — and unlike ExpressVPN, Private Internet Access includes split-tunneling on macOS 11 (Big Sur). Additionally, while all the other VPNs advertise that they have a “no-logs policy”, PIA has had its no-logs policy proven in court multiple times.
PIA is also really good for streaming — it works with popular sites like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Disney+, as well as with smaller sites like Pluto TV, Crunchyroll, and VRV.
Private Internet Access allows 10 simultaneous connections, offers some of the cheapest VPN plans around, which start at only $2.19 / month, and accepts credit cards, PayPal, Amazon Pay, and 5 different cryptocurrencies. PIA covers each plan with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Private Internet Access (PIA) provides a lot of great security features, fast speeds, and split tunneling for all Mac computers (even Big Sur). PIA works with both popular and less popular streaming sites, is fully open-source, P2P friendly, allows 10 connections, and backs each purchase with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
🥉3. ProtonVPN — Best Free VPN for Mac
ProtonVPN offers a good free plan for macOS users — it includes unlimited data, a strict no-logs policy, access to 3 VPN servers, and 1 active connection. ProtonVPN says that free users only get “medium” speeds, but when I tested my speed on its free servers (US, Japan, and the Netherlands), I saw an average drop of 22% in internet speed, which is really good for a free VPN (it’s similar to premium competitors like Private Internet Access).
ProtonVPN is often considered to be one of the most private and most secure VPNs. For starters, ProtonVPN is based in Switzerland, a country with strong data-privacy laws, and all of its apps are open-source, which means that the source code is freely available for public inspection.
ProtonVPN’s Mac app also comes with many additional high-security features. It has things like perfect forward secrecy, Secure Core servers (which send your traffic through multiple servers) and Tor over VPN (which allows you to connect to dedicated servers to use the Tor network inside your own browser).
While ProtonVPN Free is pretty good for a free VPN, its biggest downside is that it doesn’t support streaming or torrenting. ProtonVPN Plus, which offers the best value and costs $4.99 / month, adds streaming and P2P support, access to servers in 60+ countries, 10 connections, the “highest” speed, NetShield (ad blocker), Secure Core servers, and Tor over VPN. All of ProtonVPN’s paid plans come with a prorated 30-day money-back guarantee.
ProtonVPN offers a good free plan (for 1 device) with unlimited bandwidth and decent speeds. ProtonvPN is highly secure and very private — it has a strict no-logs policy that’s been independently audited, it’s located in a privacy-friendly country, and its apps are fully open-source. There are paid plans that add torrenting support, access to streaming services, and up to 10 simultaneous connections.
4. CyberGhost VPN — Best for Ease of Use
CyberGhost VPN has one of the most intuitive Mac apps on the market. It’s a great application for new users or users that are looking for a simple, easy-to-use Mac VPN service — installing and setting up CyberGhost takes only a couple of minutes, and all of the security features are already enabled.
I really like that CyberGhost VPN displays the load percentage (how many active users are on each server) and the ping (how long it takes for data to travel to the VPN server) for each server, so you can easily know which servers you should connect to for getting the best speeds.
CyberGhost has all of the standard VPN security features:
- 256-bit AES encryption.
- Internet kill switch.
- No-logs policy.
- Based in a privacy-friendly country (Romania).
In my testing, CyberGhost reduced my download speeds by roughly 34% — that’s more than ExpressVPN, but I could still stream content and surf the internet without any major bugs or lags.
CyberGhost’s macOS app comes with specialized servers for streaming and torrenting, but it’s unable to bypass internet restrictions and firewalls, so it’s not good if you live in a country that restricts internet access (for that, I’d recommend ExpressVPN). On the other hand, CyberGhost is one of my favorite gaming VPNs in 2022.
CyberGhost VPN has several plans, including an expensive monthly plan that costs $12.99 / month and a budget-friendly yearly plan that’s just $4.29 / month. The monthly plan has a 14-day money-back guarantee, but all of the yearly plans come with a generous 45-day money-back guarantee.
CyberGhost VPN has a simple, well-designed macOS app, along with great security features. Its interface is one of the easiest to use, it provides really good internet speeds for fast file sharing and streaming, and it has top-notch security features. CyberGhost can’t currently overcome internet firewalls in restrictive countries, so if you need a VPN for somewhere like China, you’ll need something else. CyberGhost offers a lengthy 45-day money-back guarantee for its yearly plans.
5. VyprVPN — Best Selection of macOS Protocols
VyprVPN is highly secure, has fast speeds, works with popular streaming services, and supports a wide range of connection protocols — including IKEv2, OpenVPN, WireGuard, and its proprietary Chameleon protocol.
I really like that VyprVPN provides built-in support for OpenVPN and WireGuard, but my favorite VyprVPN protocol is Chameleon because it’s highly secure, has faster speeds than others protocols, and is able to help you get around restrictive company/university firewalls as well as internet restrictions in high-risk countries like China.
VyprVPN has all of the standard VPN security features. You get 256-bit AES encryption, a kill switch, DNS leak protection, and a no-logs policy (independently audited and verified). VyprVPN is based in Switzerland, which is known for its strong data privacy laws.
It’s also pretty fast. When I tested VyprVPN on my MacBook, my overall connection speeds only slowed by an average of 21% (faster than CyberGhost and ProtonVPN, but still a little slower than ExpressVPN). VyprVPN has 700 servers spread out all around the world.
VyprVPN supports 30 simultaneous connections, offers several payment plans (starting at $8.33 / month), and backs all plans with a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.
VyprVPN is secure, fast, unblocks most geo-blocks, and supports a wide range of protocols — including its proprietary Chameleon protocol that is able to bypass restrictions in countries with heavy internet censorship. VyprVPN lets you connect 5 devices simultaneously, and it offers a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Bonus. IPVanish — Use on Unlimited Devices (Mac + All Other Devices)
IPVanish is easy to use, has all of the essential privacy features, supports torrenting, and allows unlimited simultaneous connections. The other VPNs on this list limit the number of devices you can connect through on one account, but IPVanish lets you connect as many devices as you want.
IPVanish also has 256-bit AES encryption, a kill switch, and a no-logs policy, but it’s based in the US, which is a member of the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliance. There was a minor incident several years ago where IPVanish told authorities a suspect’s name and IP address that then led to an arrest, but this was a long time ago and under a previous owner.
IPVanish is pretty fast. During my speed tests, IPVanish maintained really good connection speeds, with an average speed drop of around 30% (comparable with other top competitors like ExpressVPN and CyberGhost VPN). However, IPVanish isn’t great for streaming services. While I was able to watch Netflix, Hulu, and Disney+, other streaming services like Amazon Prime detected that I was using a VPN and wouldn’t let me access their libraries.
IPVanish offers monthly, quarterly, and yearly plans, which start $3.99 / month. The yearly plan includes a free subscription to VIPRE antivirus (available for Windows and macOS). IPVanish accepts credit cards and Paypal (but not cryptocurrencies) and has a 30-day money-back guarantee on its annual plan.
IPVanish provides good speeds, unlimited simultaneous connections, and an easy-to-use Mac app. IPVanish is a good choice for torrenting, but it doesn’t work with all streaming services — I was able to access Netflix and Hulu, but not Amazon Prime. IPVanish’s annual plans have a 30-day money-back guarantee.
How to Choose the Best VPN for Mac 2022
- Strong security. A good VPN should offer industry-standard security features like 256-bit AES encryption, a no-logs policy, secure VPN protocols (like WireGuard, OpenVPN, and IKEv2), and a kill switch (to prevent any internet data from leaking if the VPN gets disconnected).
- Ease of use. A VPN needs to be easy to use. All of the brands on this list are well-designed and have intuitive interfaces, so you won’t have problems using them on a Mac computer. And they all allow you to connect to a remote server, enable/disable features, or perform almost any function with just a couple of clicks.
- Fast speeds. Every VPN will slow down your internet connection at least a little bit. But a good VPN will barely slow down your connection at all, even when you connect to distant servers. The VPNs on this list decreased my connection speeds by an average of only 20-30%, so I was always able to browse the internet, stream videos, and download files with a fast and stable internet connection. (ExpressVPN is the fastest VPN on the market).
- Additional features. Many VPNs come with extra features like obfuscated servers that can help you get around firewalls in countries that restrict access to the internet, split-tunneling for choosing which traffic to route through the VPN, and dedicated P2P servers for optimized file-sharing and torrenting. I tested all of the extra features provided by the brands on this list to make sure they add real value.
- Good value. Look for VPNs that provide at least 5 simultaneous connections, have reasonably-priced subscription plans, offer different payment options, and have a money-back guarantee.
Comparison of the Best VPNs for Mac
|Mac VPN||Starting price||Free plan||Money-back guarantee||Number of connections||Split-tunneling||Works with streaming sites|
|1.🥇 ExpressVPN||$6.67 / month||No||30 days||5||Yes (10.15 and below)||Yes|
|2.🥈 Private Internet Access||$2.19 / month||No||30 days||10||Yes (all versions)||Yes|
|3.🥉 ProtonVPN||$4.99 / month||Yes||30 days||10||No||Yes|
|4. CyberGhost VPN||$2.23 / month||No||45 days||7||No||Yes|
|5. VyprVPN||$8.33 / month||No||30 days||30||No||Yes (but not all)|
|Bonus. IPVanish||$3.99 / month||No||30 days||0||No||Yes (but not all)|
Top Brands That Didn’t Make the Cut:
- HolaVPN. HolaVPN is fast, easy to use, and works with most streaming services, but it’s not as secure as the other brands on this list. It doesn’t have 256-bit encryption or a kill switch, and it routes traffic through other HolaVPN users instead of through secure servers.
- TunnelBear. TunnelBear has a free plan and is very easy to use (it also has a really cute interface with bears), but its Mac app isn’t as good as the Windows app. Also, there’s no money-back guarantee on its paid subscriptions.
- Avast SecureLineVPN. Avast is a popular cybersecurity brand, but it was accused of stealing user data for profit (you can read more about what happened here). Because of this, we no longer recommend any Avast products on our site.
Best VPNs for Mac (2022) — Final Score:
Frequently Asked Questions — VPNs for Mac
What’s the best VPN for Mac?
ExpressVPN is my favorite Mac VPN in 2022 — it’s one of the easiest VPNs to use, it’s full of excellent features, it scored as the fastest VPN in my tests, it’s reasonably priced, and it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee (so you can try it out for 30 days and see if you like it).
But there are many other excellent Mac VPNs out there. Private Internet Access provides great security and a feature-rich macOS app, ProtonVPN has a good free plan, and CyberGhost is a top choice for beginners.
How does a VPN for Mac work?
The VPNs listed here all work by rerouting your data through private, encrypted tunnels. All of the browsing activity that you send from your Mac gets rerouted through a third-party provider (the VPN) and encrypted with military-grade encryption before it reaches your destination website. Then, whatever the website sends back to you will also be encrypted.
This prevents anyone — including hackers — from surveilling your internet activity. A VPN also replaces your IP address with a virtual IP address from another country, so you can bypass internet restrictions. The best Mac VPNs (like ExpressVPN) can do all of these things and more.
Doesn’t macOS have a built-in VPN client?
Yes, macOS has a built-in VPN client, but it’s very different from a VPN service. The macOS VPN client connects users to a VPN at their workplace or school — so remote workers are able to access their company’s network and files, and students or faculty members can log into their campus’s network.
On the other hand, a VPN service provider like ExpressVPN or ProtonVPN will let you connect to secure servers located all over the world while masking your IP address and encrypting your data — this allows you to securely and privately browse the web, stream videos, and share P2P files.
Are there any free VPNs for Mac?
Yes, but most aren’t very good. While there are some decent free VPNs for Mac users, most free VPNs aren’t secure enough, have frustrating limitations, store user data, and/or slow down internet speed. If you’re looking for a safe and secure free VPN for your Mac, I recommend ProtonVPN — its free plan works on macOS, provides unlimited bandwidth on 1 device, has good speeds, and is very easy to use.
But if you’re looking for a VPN that provides multiple simultaneous connections, comes with advanced security features, works with streaming services, and allows torrenting, you should get a premium VPN. My top 3 choices — ExpressVPN, Private Internet Access, and ProtonVPN — all offer money-back guarantees, so you have plenty of time to try them out risk-free.