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My Top 3 Themes to Freshen Up Your KDE Plasma Desktop

Like many, I occasionally find myself yearning for a desktop theme change to breathe new life into my device. As a user of the TUXEDO OS distribution, I've curated a list of the top three themes to elevate your KDE Plasma desktop experience. This comes at an opportune time, as the eagerly anticipated sixth generation of KDE Plasma is set to launch by month-end. Let's embark on a journey to refresh your desktop aesthetic!

This article is sponsored by TUXEDOComputers, a German company that produces Linux hardware, notebooks, computers, and more. Always and forever, all ideas and opinions on this website are wholly mine, as my values are not for sale. To learn more, read our Code of Ethics.{alertInfo}

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What Are My Top 3 KDE Plasma Themes?

In my selection process, I focused on global themes that provide a cohesive and unified visual experience across multiple aspects of the Plasma desktop, including window decoration, wallpaper, SSDM theme, and splash screen. 

Some themes even go beyond, offering exclusive designs crafted specifically for particular applications like Firefox, along with dedicated variants for theming engines such as Kvantum. 

I made sure to choose themes with active and continuous development to ensure compatibility with future releases.


The captivating beauty of colors and their seamless gradation in the Sweet KDE theme has held my fascination for over two months since adopting it. The allure lies in its Candy Icons, aptly named, featuring a neon-style color gradient against dark backgrounds, akin to illuminating vibrant neon lights on a dark night. 

The theme offers two alluring variants: Sweet and Sweet Amber Blue, each presenting a distinctive custom desktop layout. Additionally, Sweet KDE boasts a variety of window decorations, including a translucent option.
The window buttons also sport a gradient-colored design, reminiscent of those found on macOS. 

Furthermore, the Sweet KDE theme extends its influence to include SSDM and Firefox, ensuring a consistent visual delight from login to browsing.

Whether it's the allure of the exclusive dark theme, the neon-like icons, or the Mac OS-inspired window buttons, Sweet KDE is designed to enhance your desktop environment with its contemporary and visually pleasing aesthetics.


Influenced by the principles of Material Design, the Materia KDE theme delivers a modern and captivating design tailored for KDE Plasma desktop users. 

Crafted by the same creative minds behind the acclaimed Papirus icon set, this theme boasts an elegant interface characterized by a vibrant color palette, meticulously designed Papirus icons and sleek flat surfaces. The result is a seamless and comprehensive aesthetic that maintains a perfect balance between beauty and performance. 

Materia provides a unique selection, offering both an advanced dark variant and a clear light variant, complemented by theme customization options from KDE Plasma, ensuring a stunning and personalized visual experience.

Backed by an active community, Materia KDE receives regular updates and continuous improvements, guaranteeing compatibility with the latest KDE Plasma versions. 

Essentially, Materia stands as a testament to the dedication of a team committed to visual excellence, making it a captivating choice for those seeking a visual experience aligned with the language of Material Design.


Layan presents itself as a distinctive flat material design theme, enriched with an eye-catching purple accent for a touch of originality. Boasting a vibrant icon set named Tela, characterized by rounded corners, the theme exudes a sleek and modern design ethos. 

Catering to the diverse tastes of KDE Plasma enthusiasts, Layan offers both light and dark variants, allowing users to tailor their desktop experience. Moreover, Layan shows flexibility in window decorations, providing options for both solid and translucent styles. 

Another appealing feature lies in the dimmed window buttons that unveil their beauty upon hover, contributing to an engaging visual experience.

Adding to its appeal, the theme comes with a preconfigured desktop layout that you can seamlessly activate upon application via KDE Plasma Settings.

Consistent updates and improvements underscore Layan's reliability, addressing bugs and ensuring compatibility across various KDE Plasma releases. 

Fundamentally, Layan secures its position as a modern and chic KDE Plasma theme, injecting a revitalizing aura into your desktop environment.

How To Install & Apply These Themes?

Installing themes, in general, is a straightforward process that doesn't demand much mental or physical effort. The same holds for my top three favorite KDE Plasma themes. 

You can install them either from official repositories, as with Materia, or directly from the KDE Store, as is the case for Layan and Sweet. Now, let's delve into the details of each theme installation, starting with Materia.

For a more consistent experience, I strongly recommend installing the GTK version as well.{alertWarning}


To install the Materia KDE theme, navigate to your terminal and enter the corresponding command based on your Linux distribution:

sudo apt install materia-kde materia-gtk-theme papirus-icon-theme{codeBox}

sudo pacman -Sy materia-kde materia-gtk-theme papirus-icon-theme{codeBox}

sudo dnf install materia-kde materia-gtk-theme papirus-icon-theme{codeBox}

Layan & Sweet

To install the Sweet KDE or Layan theme, follow these straightforward steps:

  1. Open the KDE System Settings.
  2. Navigate to "Appearance" and click on "Get New Global Themes."
  3. Use the search function to find the Sweet KDE or Layan theme, then click "Install."

To install the GTK version of the theme:

  1. Go to "Application Style" and click on "Configure GNOME/GTK Application Styles."
  2. Click on "Get New GNOME/GTK Application Styles."
  3. Search for Sweet or Layan and click "Install."

After completing the installation process, follow these steps to apply the theme:

  1. Go to the "Global Theme" settings.
  2. Select the installed theme and click on "Apply." This action generally applies the theme to the entire KDE Plasma environment.

  1. Verify that the theme is applied correctly by navigating to "Application Style" and then "Configure GNOME/GTK Application Styles." Choose the correct theme and click "Apply." Repeat the same process in the Splash Screen and Login Screen (SDDM) configuration sections (You can use the search function to easily locate these settings.).
  2. Additionally, don't forget to check out the Sweet Firefox theme, available for installation on the Firefox Add-ons website.

In conclusion, navigating the expansive world of KDE Plasma themes proved to be a captivating journey. Selecting my top three choices involved hours of meticulous research and hands-on experimentation. The task was far from easy, given the wealth of options available. I'm intrigued to hear about your personal favorites – do you have a list of top KDE Plasma themes to share with us?

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Djalel Oukid

Science teacher, PhD student, Master degree in Microbial biotechnology , Microbiologist, designer, video editor, podcaster & blogger. linkedin portfolio github


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  1. I like the learning to fly icon theme+a modded Transparent-sima84 using a few things from no-seams. It easy to mix the *.svg and *.svgz. Just find several collections and mix. You can even hack your colors. Just get a good color picker,Kde has a nice one but the gnome has more options-hsl ckgym rgb hex,I get them all confused and I had a study of color in my NTSC video training. This would also be nice how-to-Mix and match stuff.There is very little on web about modding stuff that is easy.

    1. Hi,

      Thanks a lot for sharing your experience with icon theme customization! It's great to hear about your mix-and-match approach with the learning to fly icon theme, Transparent-sima84, and elements from no-seams. Your experimentation and insights into blending *.svg and *.svgz files to create a unique combination are truly inspiring.

      Your comment has sparked an idea, and I'm considering creating a detailed how-to guide on mixing and matching icon themes. I think it could be beneficial for users who want to explore customization but find the process a bit daunting. If you have any specific suggestions or aspects you'd like me to cover in the guide, feel free to let me know.

      Thanks again for contributing to the discussion, and I'm excited to keep the conversation going!

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