Has your email address become a target for spam and scams? One solution is to use throwaway email providers, or a temporary email address, one that you can use to register, sign up, experiment, etc., without worrying about your real, permanent email address getting bombarded with junk. Fortunately, there are plenty of sources for disposable and temp email addresses that help you avoid the spam and scams.
1. Best for Long-Term Use: EmailOnDeck
Price: Free with premium options
It’s secure and easy to sign up for EmailOnDeck, making it one of the best ways to pick up a free throwaway email provider. Use the email to do anything you want to do anonymously, and within a matter of hours, that email address is gone forever.
EmailOnDeck doesn’t back up sent emails and wipes its servers regularly, too. The servers use the TLS protocol to ensure that the emails you send are secure. In addition, the data-hosting facilities are SOC 2 Type II certified.
This provider’s programming also means that it’s much harder for sites to detect that this is a disposable email provider, which generally means you’ll get to use it on a wider range of sites than competing providers. But, if you hate ads, want a custom email address, and want to use the address for more than a few hours, you’ll need to upgrade to Pro.
- Secure servers
- More widely accepted email addresses
- Can upgrade to keep an address for up to 30 days at a time
- Can’t send emails without Pro
- Pro price varies, and payment is only accepted in Bitcoin and Ethereum
2. Best for Anonymity: GuerillaMail
GuerillaMail looks like an early 90s Geocities page, but don’t judge a book by its cover – or a site by its design, in this case. Beyond the unassuming Web design is an easy-to-use temporary email service.
Getting started is simple. There is a handy “WTF” button that will walk you through the steps. Using GuerillaMail doesn’t require any signup or registration, nor does it use any passwords. Your inbox ID and domain are randomly generated the moment you open the GuerillaMail page. Or, customize the inbox ID and domain.
The email address created will last forever, and anyone can access it, provided they know the inbox ID. GuerillaMail also gives users the option to scramble the email address you give out, making it nearly impossible for others to guess it. All emails arrive in the inbox on the main GuerillaMail page and are automatically deleted after one hour, regardless of whether they have been read.
- Send and receive unlimited messages
- Scramble your throwaway email for added privacy
- Keep using the same email indefinitely
- Anyone with your inbox ID can view your messages
3. Best for Short Periods: 10MinuteMail
If you only need an email address for a short period of time, then 10MinuteMail has you covered. True to its name, 10MinuteMail is a disposable email provider that gives you a unique email address that self-destructs, including all messages, after 10 minutes.
The moment you open the site, the 10-minute time starts counting down. Click Get 10 more minutes if you need a little extra time. Read all messages and download any attachments you may need before time runs out.
There’s no way for anyone else to access your inbox. Everything is truly gone after the timer ends. If you close your browser, the temporary email still exists until the timer runs out.
- Everything deletes after 10 minutes
- No one else can access messages
- Add more time if needed for free
- Might not be enough time for some users and verification emails
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4. Best for Renewing: ThrowAwayMail
If you want the privacy of a truly disposable email address but don’t want to be racing the clock, you may want to give ThrowAwayMail a try. This throwaway email provider generates a unique email that is only accessible to you. After 48 hours, that unique email address is purged along with any mail in its inbox.
ThrowAwayMail isn’t much to look at but is super simple to use. Click on the button to generate a unique email. As soon as you have an address, the 48-hour countdown begins.
- Everything deletes after 48 hours
- Renew your time just by revisiting the site within 48 hours
- Clean design
5. Best for Daily Use: Maildrop
Maildrop is one of the better temporary email providers for text-based messages. It’s free and doesn’t require any sort of registration. Easily create your own email address or use a randomly generated one. What sets Maildrop apart is that you can revisit the inbox of any email address that you create.
The fact that a Maildrop inbox lasts in perpetuity comes with a few caveats. First, Maildrop limits the types of email that reaches your inbox. Unfortunately, this means that attachments and messages over 500k in size are completely discarded.
You’re limited to 10 messages at a time, and if you don’t use the email within 24 hours, it may be deleted. Just revisit once a day to keep it active. Maildrop even has its own spam filter to keep your temporary inbox clear.
- Create your own email
- Built-in spam filter
- Renew the address if needed
- No attachments
- Smaller messages only
Good to know: if you find yourself often in need of sharing b your email, learn how to automatically forward email on your Android.
6. Best Service With Apps: Temp Mail
Price: Free with premium options
Platforms: Web, iOS, Android
With Temp Mail, your throwaway email may last several days with frequent use. But what’s really great is that you’re free to delete the temporary email address at any time. Get a randomly generated email address when you load the page. Unless you manually generate a new address, you’ll see this same address and inbox whenever you load the Temp Mail site for at least two days.
Don’t worry about your information being stored, though. Not only is your data deleted when the email address deletes, but your IP address is never stored, so you don’t have to be concerned with IP tracking coming back to your computer.
Temp Mail also boasts a premium version that lets you connect a custom domain and create up to ten email addresses at once. This also removes any ads.
- Use the same email for a few days
- Use the website or mobile apps (iOS, Android)
- Create multiple addresses with premium
- No clear details on how long an email address exists
7. Best for Temp and Long Term in One: Mail Poof
Mail Poof not only has one of the best throwaway email provider names, but you’re able to create your own custom addresses. Choose how quickly the address and any messages are deleted. By default, everything deletes within 24 hours, though.
It’s completely free to use, and you can create as many new email addresses as you need. There isn’t anything to sign up for, either. If you’re looking for a no-frills option, this one is hard to beat.
Just remember that if you want something deleted sooner or later than 24 hours, use the links under the email address to choose how often messages and the email address are deleted from the system. This ranges from one minute to never, so it can be both a temporary and long-term solution.
- Set custom time frames for messages and addresses
- 24-hour default for deleting messages
- Create your own custom address
- Only one domain to choose from, making it easier for sites to block it
Good to know: need to share Google Docs through email? Check out this guide.
8. Best for Downloading Messages: FakeMail
If you want a disposable email address with a pretty inbox, give FakeMail a try. Create a custom email, or go with the default given. While you can’t change the domain, it’s a clean, no-frills interface for messages that you don’t want in your real inbox.
By default, email addresses only last for one hour, but it’s easy to extend that time by up to two weeks. To keep messages, easily download them.
Outside of being a useful throwaway email provider, the site also provides randomly generated passwords and avatars. This is ideal if you need a quick password and/or avatar to create temporary accounts when testing a site or service.
- Extend time repeatedly to keep using
- Get quick random passwords
- Pleasant interface
- Return button to go back to Inbox blends
9. Best Encrypted Mail With Aliases: Proton Mail
Price: Free with premium options
Platforms: Web, iOS, Android
Proton Mail isn’t like other temporary email providers. This is a full email solution that encrypts all your messages. However, all users get at least 10 hide-my-email aliases that work as throwaway emails. These make it easy to sign up for sites and services that you don’t want to have your real identity.
Think of this as an all-in-one option. Check your real email and aliases all in one place. The only downside is that you have to install the Proton Pass (free) browser extension or mobile app to generate aliases. Plus, all messages are encrypted, even those arriving to your aliases.
Proton Mail also comes with a calendar, VPN, and vault for your passwords. For more storage, messages, aliases, and other features, you’ll need to upgrade. However, the free version is rather generous.
- Fully encrypted
- Create up to 10 reusable aliases for free (unlimited in premium plans)
- Works as a real inbox, too
- Only 10 free aliases
- Limit of 150 messages and 1GB of storage in free plan
10. Best Premium Service: StartMail
Price: Starts at $59.95/year
StartMail is similar to Proton Mail, but there isn’t a free tier – just a free seven-day trial. It’s a fully encrypted service that keeps trackers, spam, and profiling out of your inbox. It was created by the same developers behind StartPage, the private search engine.
All users get unlimited aliases to further protect your identity from prying online eyes. Manage all your disposable email addresses in a single place, along with your main inbox.
Since it’s a premium service, you’ll never see ads. However, the free trial requires a credit card, so it may not be the best option if you’re just looking for a purely temporary or throwaway email provider.
- Everything’s encrypted
- Create unlimited aliases
- No spam
Keep your email inbox much cleaner by using disposable email addresses whenever possible. Remember that these services aren’t always private, so avoid using them for shopping, banking, or anything that could expose your identity.
Some sites have begun blocking temporary email addresses. If this happens, the free version of Proton Mail is likely your best option. If privacy is a concern, check out these SMS apps for Android that put privacy first, and master these Windows privacy settings.
Image credit: Unsplash. All screenshots by Crystal Crowder.
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