7 Journal Apps That'll Hold More Than Just Your Deepest, Darkest Secrets

If I had a dollar for every barely used notebook abandoned after a half-hearted attempt to start journaling every day, I'd be able to retire early. For someone like me, with the purest intentions but the worst attention span, even the most beautiful journals end up half filled and buried in a closet for a number of reasons: busy days, the strange pressure of a blank page, not knowing what to write, and so many more. Digital journals and journal apps, however, have proved to be a more viable, less expensive way to build a daily journaling habit that's quick and easy.

While blank journals may work for some, journal apps come with similar benefits, as well as additional features you'll wish your middle school diaries had way back when. In addition to spots for free writing as you would in a classic journal, the journal apps ahead boast added capabilities like photo and file sharing, planners, mood and habit tracking, tagging and categorization, and to-do lists. Even better, for those who lose any semblance of writing inspiration when faced with a blank page, some of the digital journals ahead even feature daily prompts and short-answer style questions that make journaling a lot easier to tackle. Not to mention, it's all contained in the device you never let out of your sight anyway.

For the seasoned journal users and the journal newbies alike, find the best journal apps ahead to hold all your feelings — and so much more.

Best Journal App: Penzu

Best Journal App: Penzu

Designed with security and privacy in mind, Penzu is a platform that allows users to customize their own digital journal. You can choose from different types of journal templates to get you started, and within each entry, users can add photos, tags, and other elements to bring feelings to life.

Best Journal App: Notion

Although it was originally designed as a professional platform to keep work teams organized, the Notion app has transformed into something much more. Users across the globe now use Notion in a wide variety of ways, both in a professional and a personal capacity. You can use Notion as a simple journal or notebook while simultaneously using it to keep track of your goals, to-do lists, big and small plans, and more.

Best Journal App: Day One

The Day One journal app offers users seemingly endless ways to express themselves beyond what a blank, physical journal can do. In addition to typing out journal entires and adding photos, users can also record audio, add drawings and doodles, categorize entries, add locations, format text, and so much more.

Best Journal App: Journey

Alongside the usual journal app features, the Journey app offers users myriad ways to prioritize self-care habits beyond just journaling. The app offers guided journal coaching for anyone who's new to the activity, as well as the ability to see throwbacks to past entries and track fitness habits and mood markers.

Best Journal App: Moodnotes

If the idea of journaling daily sounds great but your schedule doesn't allow for a long, drawn-out writing session, Moodnotes streamlines the process while still allowing you to track your thought patterns and feelings. Simply record your mood daily, detail your feelings as heavily or as simply as you'd like, and watch as a calendar of journaling progress comes together.

Best Journal App: Five Minute Journal

A digital spinoff of the popular physical Five Minute Journal, the Five Minute Journal app builds on the successful features of its tangible counterpart. Users are offered short, easy prompts to fill in daily that allow you to practice mindfulness in five-minute chunks of time.

Best Journal App: Daylio

Yet another app that makes filling in a journal entry less daunting, Daylio allows users to keep track of their daily mood, activities, and more with icons, tags, and emoji. You can customize your Daylio theme and entries, track habits, and even look back at your overall journal trends with statistics based on your entries.