Use mailboxes to organize email on your iPhone or iPad

Learn how to organize your email with custom mailboxes, VIP mailboxes, and flags.

How to use mailboxes

A mailbox is a folder that you can use to organize your email. In the Mail app, you can use standard mailboxes — like Inbox, Sent, Trash, Remind Me, Follow Up, and Send Later. Or you can create custom mailboxes. You can also use VIP and flags to make certain email messages stand out.

Creating a new mailbox in iOS 15

Create custom mailboxes

  1. In the Mailboxes list, tap Edit in the upper-right corner, then tap New Mailbox.
  2. Give your mailbox a name. If you have more than one email account set up on your device, tap Mailbox Location and choose the account where you want to create a mailbox.
  3. Tap Save, then tap Done.

You can find your new mailbox in the Mailboxes list under the account where you created it.

Moving emails to a new inbox in iOS 15

Move your email messages to a mailbox

  1. Go to your Inbox in Mail.
  2. Tap Edit in the upper-right corner.
  3. Select the email messages, then tap Move.
  4. Choose a mailbox to move the email messages to.

Delete mailboxes

When you delete a custom mailbox, it permanently deletes all of the email messages inside the mailbox and from your account. Before you delete a mailbox, you can move your email to another mailbox.

To delete a custom mailbox:

  1. Go to your Mailboxes list and tap Edit in the upper-right corner.
  2. Tap the mailbox you want to delete.
  3. Tap Delete Mailbox.
  4. Tap Delete, then tap Done.

You can only delete custom mailboxes. 

Learn how to delete individual emails on your iPhone or iPad

How to use the VIP mailbox

In the Mail app, you can specify certain people as VIPs to help keep track of messages they send. Your VIPs have a star icon next to the names in the message header. Your VIP mailbox is in the list of your mailboxes.

If you can't find your VIP mailbox, make sure it's turned on. Go to Mail, tap Edit, then make sure VIP is selected in the list of mailboxes.

Adding a contact to your VIP list within Mail in iOS 15

Add a VIP

  1. Go to an email.
  2. Tap the sender’s name or email address in the message header.
  3. Tap Add to VIP.

Mail adds the VIP to your VIP mailbox.

Adjusting your alert preferences for VIP emails in iOS 15

Change VIP alerts

  1. Open Mail.
  2. Tap the Info button next to VIP.
  3. Tap VIP Alerts.
  4. Then select the alerts you want to set.

Flag your email

You can mark your email with a flag to help you keep track of your messages. You can even color code your different flags. When you flag an email, you’ll see a flag icon next to the email thread.


Flagging an email within Mail in iOS 15

Use the default flag:

  1. Go to the mailbox that has the email you want to flag.
  2. Swipe left over the email.
  3. Tap Flag.

Choosing a flag color to mark emails within Mail on iOS 15

To change the color of a flag:

  1. Go to an email thread.
  2. Tap the Reply button.
  3. Tap Flag, then select the color you want to use for that flag.

Selecting the Flagged mailbox in iOS 15

Find your flagged email

  1. In the Mail app, go to your Mailboxes list.
  2. Tap Edit in the upper-right corner.
  3. Select Flagged.
  4. Tap Done. Your Flagged email mailbox now appears in your Mailboxes list.

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