How to Send HTML Email From Apple Mail

By Liz Turner

Most of the time, text emails are all we need for communicating with friends, co-workers and business associates. Even if you're using email for promotional purposes, text is usually all you need. But sometimes a plain old text email just isn't enough--you want something pretty and eye-catching. That's when you need to send an HTML email. And if you're a Mac user, you're in luck--you can send HTML emails from Apple Mail.

Things You'll Need

  • HTML or text editing program
  • Safari web browser

Step 1

Create an HTML document in another program--a text editor or HTML editor. Save the file with the .html extension.

Step 2

Open Mail and make sure it's the default email program on your computer. Go to the "Mail" menu, select "Preferences," go to the "General" tab, and in the drop-down menu next to "Default email reader" make sure your version of Mail is selected.

Step 3

Open Safari, and under the "File" menu choose "Open file." Navigate to your HTML file and open it. Make sure your email looks the way you want. If necessary, open the file in the program you used to create it and make changes. Open the final file in Safari.

Step 4

Go to Safari's "File" menu and choose "Mail Contents of This Page." Mail will open a new email with your HTML file in the body. Change the subject field to whatever you want it to be, put your desired recipients' addresses in the "To" field and hit "Send."

Tips & Warnings

  • If your email includes linked images, upload them to a web server--they won't stay linked from your hard drive. If you don't have a website, there are free photo-storage sites you can use.
  • Email clients tend to render HTML emails a bit differently (see Resources section). Test your email by sending it to several types of email accounts, if possible.
  • If your email is commercial, be sure you're familiar with the CAN-SPAM Act, which regulates commercial email communication (see Resources section).