How to Create Desktop Sticky Notes in Windows Operating System

Sticky notes are a convenient way to jot down quick reminders, thoughts, or to-do lists directly on your Windows desktop. The Windows operating system comes with a built-in Sticky Notes app that allows you to easily create colorful sticky notes on your desktop.

In this comprehensive guide, you will learn:

  • What are sticky notes in Windows and how to access them
  • How to create new sticky notes
  • Customizing and formatting sticky notes
  • Syncing sticky notes across devices
  • Tips for using sticky notes effectively

I have over 10 years of experience in writing technology tutorials and guides. Read on as I walk you through the complete process of using desktop sticky notes in Windows, with examples and visuals to make it easy to follow.

What Are Sticky Notes in Windows?

Sticky Notes is a lightweight app included in Windows that lets you create virtual sticky notes on your desktop. These function just like physical sticky notes – you can quickly jot down reminders, to-do lists, ideas, and more.

Key features:

  • Create colorful notes and stick them anywhere on your desktop
  • Add text, images, lists and more
  • Resize and format notes
  • Sync notes across Windows devices

To access Sticky Notes:

  • Windows 10: Click the Start button and select Sticky Notes from the app list
  • Windows 11: Open the Start menu, click All Apps, and select Sticky Notes

You can also just search for “Sticky Notes” from the Windows search bar.

Sticky Notes app icon in Windows 10

Creating New Sticky Notes

Follow these simple steps to create a new sticky note:

  1. Open the Sticky Notes app if it is not already open
  2. Click on the + icon in the top left corner OR right-click on an existing note
  3. A new sticky note will appear on your desktop

You can create as many sticky notes as you want. They will continue to stay on your desktop unless you explicitly delete them.

To add content:

  • Click inside the sticky note and start typing text
  • You can format text using keyboard shortcuts:
    • Ctrl + B for bold
    • Ctrl + I for italics
  • Insert images by clicking on the image icon in the top menu bar
  • Create lists by adding dashes - or numbers

Customizing and Formatting Sticky Notes

Make your sticky notes stand out by customizing them:

Change Color

Right-click on a sticky note and select a color from the context menu. You can choose from 8 color presets.

Resize Notes

Click and drag the bottom-right corner of a note to resize it. Make notes smaller to conserve desktop space or larger to add more content.

Add Title

Give your sticky note a title by typing text and highlighting it. Then click the “T” icon in the top menu to apply Heading 1 formatting. This will make the text larger and bold.

Sticky note with title

Use Markdown Formatting

Sticky Notes supports some basic Markdown formatting like bold, italics, headings, lists and more.

For example:

# Groceries 

- Eggs
- Milk
- Bread

**Total:** $10

Will be formatted as:


  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Bread

Total: $10

Syncing Sticky Notes Across Devices

You can sync your sticky notes across Windows devices using your Microsoft account:

  1. In the Sticky Notes app, click the 3-dot menu > Settings
  2. Click “Manage Accounts”
  3. Sign in with your Microsoft account

Once signed in, new sticky notes you create will automatically sync to the cloud and any changes will sync across devices.

This allows you to seamlessly access the same sticky notes on your Windows laptop, desktop or tablet by signing in with the same Microsoft account.

Tips for Using Sticky Notes Effectively

Here are some tips to help you make the most of desktop sticky notes on Windows:

  • Pin frequently-used sticky notes to the taskbar for quick access
  • Use different color notes to color-code by category or priority
  • Set reminders for notes – right-click on a note and select “Set reminder”
  • Group related notes together on your desktop
  • Resize large notes into a compact grid to save space
  • Frequently delete old notes you no longer need
  • Back up your notes by exporting them as a .txt file


Sticky Notes is a handy built-in Windows app that lets you instantly jot down notes on your desktop. You can easily create colorful sticky notes, customize them, set reminders, use markdown formatting, and even sync notes across devices.

By following this guide, you now know how to fully utilize sticky notes to organize your tasks, thoughts, and ideas. Feel free to explore the app and tailor it to your personal note-taking needs!

Let me know if you have any other questions in the comments.