How to skip the Trash and delete files on Mac immediately

Not every file you get rid of on your Mac needs to go to the Trash folder. Using Trash is handy just in case you want to get a file back. But, if you know for certain that you want to delete a file permanently, do so right away! Why bother sending it to Trash?

Here’s how to skip the Trash and delete files immediately on your Mac.

Permanently delete files on Mac by skipping the Trash

Delete files on Mac with a keyboard shortcut

One quick and easy way to permanently delete files is with a keyboard shortcut. This lets you remove the file by tapping a few keys on the keyboard. Here’s how:

  1. Select the file you want to delete, whether in a folder or on your desktop.
  2. Hit Option + Command + Delete.
  3. You’ll then see a pop-up message confirming the action. Click Delete.
Confirm Delete File Permanently

Delete files on Mac with the menu option

The second way you can immediately delete a file is by using the menu bar. And, this isn’t as obvious as it should be.

Follow these steps to permanently delete files on Mac, bypassing the Trash:

  1. Select the file you want to delete.
  2. Click File from the menu bar.
  3. Hold down the Option key on your keyboard, and you will notice the options in that menu change slightly. Move to Trash changes to Delete Immediately. So, select Delete Immediately and then confirm that you wish to delete it in the pop-up box.
Menu Delete Immediately

If you’re absolutely sure that you won’t want to restore a file from the Trash and would rather delete it immediately, you have these two convenient options. Which one are you going to use?

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