How to Create a New Lock Screen in iOS 16

iOS 16 makes customizing your Lock Screen easier than ever before! Learn how to create a new Lock Screen from scratch or use suggested themes.

* This post is part of iPhone Life's Tip of the Day newsletter. . *

There are many new ways to customize your Lock Screen! I'll walk you through the customization menu, and I'll teach you how to create a new Lock Screen you've always dreamed of. You can make a bunch of different ones and switch between them when you feel like changing things up!

Related: How to Create a Photo Lock Screen on iPhone (iOS 16)

Why You’ll Love This Tip

  • iOS 16 gives you more flexibility when creating and customizing your Lock Screen.
  • You can have multiple Lock Screens for different occasions, such as a more professional one for work and a silly one for weekends.

How to Create a New iOS 16 Lock Screen

To create a new Lock Screen on an iPhone without the Home button, follow the steps below. If you do have a Home button, you’ll have to use the alternative method below. First, make sure your iPhone is unlocked, then:

  1. Tap and hold your Lock Screen until you see the Customize and Focus buttons. If you have a hard time getting the buttons to appear, check out the alternative way below.

    Tap and hold your Lock screen until you see the Customize and Focus buttons.
  2. Tap the blue plus icon.

    Tap the blue plus icon.
  3. Here you’ll see the entire Add New Wallpaper menu.

    Here you’ll see the entire Add New Wallpaper menu.
  4. At the very top, you'll see circular icons. You can swipe left to see more options. These include Photo, People, Photo Shuffle, Emoji, Weather, Astronomy, and Color. Selecting one of these lets you build a Lock screen from scratch.

    At the very top, you'll see circular icons. You can swipe left to see more options. These include Photo, People, Photo Shuffle, Emoji, Weather, Astronomy, and Color. Selecting one of these lets you build a Lock screen from scratch.
  5. Right under that, you’ll see Featured wallpapers. These show preset options if you want to test them out without spending too much time customizing them. In addition, there may be some special cultural moment themes such as Unity and Pride.

    Right under that, you’ll see Featured wallpapers.
  6. Under Featured, you should see Suggested Photos.

    Under Featured, you should see Suggested Photos.
  7. If you keep scrolling down, you’ll see more preset options under each main theme. Every time I open the Add New Wallpaper menu, I see slightly different versions. You might also see them organized in a different order than I do.

    If you keep scrolling down, you’ll see more preset options under each main theme.
  8. Tap on a wallpaper to select or customize it.

    Tap on a wallpaper to select or customize it.
  9. If you like the way it looks off the bat, you can tap Add.

    If you like the way it looks off the bat, you can tap Add.
  10. Then select Set as Wallpaper Pair or Customize Home Screen. If you select Wallpaper Pair, your Home Screen will look like your wallpaper but blurred. If you select Customize Home Screen, you'll be able to create a different Home Screen.

    Then select Set as Wallpaper Pair or Customize Home Screen.

Each theme has significantly different customization options that are best explored by playing with all the settings!

Alternative Way to Create a New Lock Screen

Another way to create a new Lock Screen is through your Settings. This is the only way to create a new Lock Screen if you have an iPhone with a Home button. To learn more iOS 16 tips, don’t forget to sign up for our Tip of the Day newsletter.

  1. Open Settings.

    Tap and hold your Lock screen until you see the Customize and Focus buttons.
  2. Tap Wallpaper.

    Tap Wallpaper.
  3. Select Add New Wallpaper.

    Select Add New Wallpaper.
  4. Here you’ll see the Add New Wallpaper menu. The rest of the process is the same as outlined above.

    Here you’ll see the Add New Wallpaper menu.
That's it; you now know how to create a Lock screen on an iPhone running iOS 16! There are many ways to customize every theme. Learn how to customize an Emoji Lock screen, set up an Astronomy Lock screen, or set a Lock screen to display a Focus mode
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Author Details

Olena Kagui's picture

Author Details

Olena Kagui

Olena Kagui is a Feature Writer at iPhone Life who lives in Hawaii. With a BA in International Relations from Anglo American University, Olena traveled the world. She has lived in Ukraine, the Czech Republic, China, and the USA. Olena won an excellence award for a controversial article, got a grant to blog from a war-zone, and published a short fictional story. She hopes to publish a full-length novel and continue writing up a storm on her blog The Travel Bug Bite! When she’s not typing or flying, she is loving on animals, crafting bizarre creations, and devouring all-you-can-eat sushi.