Distraction Free Email Composition with Gmail


As you can see, I am writing an email in Gmail without the standard Inbox in the background. This is a nice hack if you want to send an email without unintentionally glimpse your full inbox. To achieve this simple use the following url:


To do this easily, simple bookmark the page and use that bookmark whenever you want a distraction free email composition with Gmail. ​​ PS: After sending you email you can write a new one by simply refreshing your page. Happy Emailing — Sincerely Yours, Ibrahim Selection_026

Tip from a reader (Marc): If you want a similar solution when replying to a email, simply pop-out the reply window then clicking the double-arrow icon in the upper right corner while pressing the shit key as shown in the images below.

An easier keyboard-based solution is Shift+r.


6 thoughts on “Distraction Free Email Composition with Gmail

  1. Marc

    I love this hack, especially when writing long or structured emails, but there is an easier way to do this.

    When you go to your Gmail inbox and click compose to start a letter, there’s a little arrow on the top right hand corner that allows you to expand the message field when clicked. However, this leaves the inbox in the background.

    Alternatively, you can hold the “SHIFT” key while clicking this arrow and it will change from “Expand” to “Pop-out.” The pop-out will be in a new window without the inbox behind it, just like your hack.

    Doing it this way has the added benefit of keeping a little, “return” arrow where the “Pop-out” arrow was which allows you to shrink your email back into your inbox window.


    • Thanks for your tips Marc.
      I do use the first as my default but as we both mentioned it keeps your inbox in the background. Once you send your email, or before composing, you are usually in the Inbox.

      As for the second tip, it’s nice to know about it. Thanks. Nevertheless the same idea applies here; you get a glimpse of your inbox.

      I was aiming at a solution in where you can send this important email but don’t want to procrastinate on your inbox.

      Thanks again 🙂


      • Marc

        Interesting. Clicking Shift pops it out completely for me. No inbox.

        Also just tried holding shift when clicking the “Compose” button. That also works!


  2. What you mention does work for me too. Shift in this case is working like Ctrl+link opening it in a new tab or new window.
    This is most useful when replying to an email. I’ll add it as another tip. Actually a better way is Shift+R. Thanks.


  3. Hi Ibrahaim,
    I recently made a Chrome extension that addresses this exact problem. It hides your Gmail inbox by default, so that you can compose messages or search your archive without getting distracted. There are no special URLs to remember – you just access Gmail in the normal way.

    The extension is called “Inbox When Ready” and it’s available here:

    What do you think?


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