Many Apple fans may think they don’t need a Mac VPN. After all, MacOS is known to be stable and secure and is known for its excellent built-in security features. But while this is true, a VPN’s purpose is not necessarily to protect you from malware or to protect you locally. Instead, it is meant to protect your data after they have left your Mac. Once your data is on the bad path, the fact that it comes from a Mac no longer matters, and the best Mac VPN is an essential part of privacy.
However, the best VPN for Mac isn’t just about protecting your online banking information and staying safe when inundated. A hugely popular custom is to unblock regional Netflix libraries and access other streaming services in locations where you wouldn’t usually be able to use them. But whatever you plan to use it for, your Mac VPN should be able to do it all.
Best Mac VPN
You can see below that we have crowned ExpressVPN as the best Mac VPN on the market. That’s simply because you do just about everything you can ask for from a VPN without working up a sweat – and it’s great on just about any device, not only your Mac. But there’s plenty of worthy competition, so keep scrolling to find out what we consider the best Mac VPN services available today.
Simply the best Mac VPN
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for Mac because it ticks all the boxes and does without getting sweaty. It offers excellent speeds on virtually all of its servers worldwide, has an outstanding, dedicated Mac client, and offers 24/7 live chat support in the rare case that something doesn’t work the way it should.
However, beneath the surface, ExpressVPN also has serious privacy protection – you have a choice of OpenVPN UDP and TCP, L2TP/IPSec, and IKEv2 protocols to customize your experience, plus IPv6 leak protection. Express also owns all of its DNS servers, which means that your data will never be entrusted to a third party. ExpressVPN is also an excellent VPN for streaming. Our tests were able to unblock almost everything we threw at it, from Netflix and YouTube to Amazon Prime. However, iPlayer is currently proving a problem, so it is not perfect if you urgently need BBC access.
The only other real drawback of Express is the limit of five simultaneous connections on one subscription. Although that’s not as much as with some competitors, you can still protect your iMac, MacBook, iPhone, and smart TV, plus an extra connection left for whatever you want. If you’re looking for the best Mac VPN that money can buy, look no further than ExpressVPN. Read more in our ExpressVPN Review.
Speed and value in an attractive package
Surfshark is a slick, easy-to-use Mac VPN, and if you’ve blown up all your savings on a new Mac Pro, that’s a serious bargain, too. But just because it’s the cheapest on the list doesn’t mean it’s undersized, and it blows the more expensive competition into the water. With a full complement of VPN protocols, excellent AES-256 encryption, double hops, and split tunneling, Surfshark doesn’t lack features that will please experienced users. However, its simple layout and cheerful branding make it very attractive for novice VPN users.
Streaming fans will also be pleased, as Surfshark can unblock Netflix, iPlayer, Hulu, and more – a much better performance than many of its more expensive competitors. And that’s the beauty of Surfshark. While it can’t compete with ExpressVPN in terms of out-and-out power and functionality, it offers a fully featured experience for less than $2.50 a month if you’re going for the most extended plan – which we certainly recommend.
So if you’re looking for a top-of-the-range Mac VPN at a less-than-Apple price, Surfshark is the best Mac VPN for you. Read more in our Surfshark VPN review.
Security, speed, and simplicity
NordVPN is a very well known VPN, and for a good reason. The desktop applications match Mac’s sleek look, and you also have excellent security for your back: 256-AES encryption, DNS leak protection, two kill switches, plus dual VPN and even Onion over VPN. You’ll also have access to over 5,400 servers in 59 countries, many of which deliver excellent speeds. This is also helped by the fact that the WireGuard based NordLynx protocol has finally been rolled out everywhere, delivering incredible speeds of over 300Mbps.
While the VPN client looks great, it lacks any depth on both Mac and iOS. However, that’s not necessarily a bad thing as they both provide enough features on the surface to satisfy the vast majority of users, especially if you want a speedy Netflix VPN and might want to check your emails securely. Combine that with zero registration and a 30-day money-back guarantee, and Nord is starting to look like an excellent choice as the best Mac VPN. Read more in our NordVPN Review.
The fastest Mac VPN on the market
If you want the fastest connection speeds on your Mac, there is only one option: Hotspot Shield. With its proprietary Catapult Hydra protocol, it delivered speeds of over 400Mbps in our tests – faster than the vast majority of Internet connections worldwide and is one of the best high-speed VPN services available. However, please be aware that these speeds are only available with the premium version.
Streaming performance goes hand in hand with high connection speeds, and fortunately, Hotspot Shield can unblock the full range of services. If you want to watch Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, and more overseas, you will be able to do so with Hotspot Shield and at high speeds.
While Hotspot Shield is quite transparent about what information they collect about users (including IP addresses, your approximate geographic location, and your ISP), if you are after a zero-logging VPN, you might want to look elsewhere. However, this information is impossible to link back to the user, so unless you are looking for the most secure VPN, we wouldn’t worry about Hotspot’s logging too much.
So, if you want blazing speeds, simple apps, and excellent streaming power in addition to online anonymity, in that case, Hotspot Shield is the best Mac VPN – plus, you get a 1Password subscription in addition to robocall blocking and identity theft protection that is thrown in for free. Read more in our Hotspot Shield VPN review.
Useful Mac VPN for streaming and torrenting
CyberGhost says it created its software specifically for Mac, which should theoretically provide the best VPN experience on your machine. Thanks to nearly 7,000 servers in 88 countries, the claim is not far from the truth.
However, CyberGhost’s huge server network isn’t the only thing it should brag about, as its customers have some handy features that should help you get the most out of it with a minimum of effort. One of these – which we like to see in every VPN – is a filtering system, designed to display the best server for whatever purpose, that streaming Netflix or sharing P2P.
The only thing blocking CyberGhost are some minor mistakes we’ve encountered when using the programs. But for the rest, we can’t find much error, and if you are looking for a cheap Mac VPN that makes streaming and torrenting a pleasure, CyberGhost the best Mac VPN for you. Read more about it in our CyberGhost VPN Review.