Trusted WordPress tutorials, when you need them most.
Beginner’s Guide to WordPress
25 Million+
Websites using our plugins
Years of WordPress experience
WordPress tutorials
by experts

How to Fix Missing Appearance Menu in WordPress Admin

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on WPBeginner. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations. Learn more about Editorial Process.

Are your Appearance menu options missing from the WordPress admin area?

Some WordPress themes are only customizable with the Full Site Editor. If you installed this type of theme, the options under the Appearance menu in the WordPress dashboard will look different.

In this article, we will show you how to easily fix the missing Appearance menu in the WordPress admin area.

Fixing the missing appearance menu in WordPress

What Happened to the Appearance Menu in WordPress?

If you install a WordPress block theme, then you will notice your Appearance menu looks different. Instead of Appearance » Customize, you will see Appearance » Editor instead, like so:

Selecting the Full-Site Editor from the WordPress admin panel

The Editor menu will bring you to the WordPress Full Site Editor. This feature is basically an extension of the Gutenberg block editor, allowing you to edit your theme the same way you would edit your pages and posts with blocks.

You can add and edit any part of your WordPress website using blocks, including widgets and navigation menus. This makes certain menu items under the Appearance menu redundant, so they are hidden by default.

That said, you may get confused the first time you see this. In this article, we will show you how to access important settings like navigation menus and widgets even though these options are no longer under the Appearance menu.

How to Fix Missing the Menus Option in WordPress Admin

First, let’s go over how to fix the missing ‘Menus’ option under Appearance in WordPress so you can create and edit your menus again.

We will go through these methods one by one, and you can skip to the one that suits you:

1. Use the Navigation Block in Full Site Editor

If you are using a block-based WordPress theme with Full Site Editing support, then you cannot access the classic navigation menus screen.

Even if you manually enter the URL for the navigation menu page (like, then you will see the following error message:

No support for menus

When using a block theme, you can add, create, and edit navigation menus using the Navigation block under the site editor.

Simply launch the full site editor by visiting the Appearance » Editor page.

This will bring you to the site editor interface. You can insert a new Navigation block by clicking on the ‘+’ button.

Navigation block

If you already have a Navigation block added by your theme, then you can click to select it.

Then, simply choose a menu or create a new one.

Create and manage menus in navigation block

You can even select previous menus that you have created for your website from the Classic Menus section.

If you are starting with a new empty menu, then you can add items to your navigation menu. You can add links like you normally do in the block editor when writing posts and pages.

Adding menu items

Once you are finished, don’t forget to click on the Update button to save your menu and apply it across your WordPress blog.

For more details, you can see our step-by-step guide on how to add a navigation menu in WordPress.

2. Fix the Missing Menus Option by Switching Themes

If you want to keep using the classic navigation menus, then you will need to switch your WordPress theme to one that doesn’t include the Full Site Editing feature.

Themes that don't support full site editing

Currently, many popular WordPress themes don’t support Full Site Editing. However, there is always a chance that they may start using it as it improves over time.

Alternatively, you can create a custom WordPress theme of your own without writing any code.

How to Fix Other Missing Appearance Menus in WordPress

Navigation menus are not the only items disappearing from the Appearance menu. Here is how you can fix other missing items under the Appearance Menu:

1. Customize

The Customize menu under Appearance is used to launch the Theme Customizer. You can still access a limited version of it by visiting the customize.php URL directly:

Simply enter that URL into your browser and change “” to your own WordPress site’s domain name.

You’ll see a notification that your theme supports Full Site Editing. Below that, you’ll find a few basic customization options.

Minimum options in customize page

2. Widgets

If your WordPress theme doesn’t have any sidebars or widget areas defined, then you will not see the Widgets menu under Appearance.

Manually accessing the widgets page (e.g. will show you an error message that your theme is not widget-aware:

Your theme is not widget-aware

On the other hand, if your theme does have widget areas, then you will see a widgets menu.

It will still use the block-based widget editor.

Block based widgets

You can switch to the legacy widgets screen by using the Classic Widgets plugin.

Alternatively, you can use the WordPress Full Site Editor’s Patterns and Template Parts features to create your own widget areas (like sidebars or footers) and add blocks there.

For more information, check out our beginner’s guide to using block patterns.

3. Theme File Editor

WordPress came with a basic file editor that allowed you to edit theme files and templates directly from the WordPress admin area.

We don’t recommend using that editor, but it often came in handy for many beginners when they needed to quickly add a code snippet to their theme’s functions.php file.

The good news is that it is still available, but it is moved under the Tools menu if you are using a Full Site Editing theme.

Theme file editor

We hope this article helped you fix the missing Appearance menus in the WordPress admin area. You may also want to take a look at our tutorials on how to improve WordPress SEO and how to pick the best WordPress plugins for small businesses.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

Disclosure: Our content is reader-supported. This means if you click on some of our links, then we may earn a commission. See how WPBeginner is funded, why it matters, and how you can support us. Here's our editorial process.

Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff at WPBeginner is a team of WordPress experts led by Syed Balkhi with over 16 years of experience in WordPress, Web Hosting, eCommerce, SEO, and Marketing. Started in 2009, WPBeginner is now the largest free WordPress resource site in the industry and is often referred to as the Wikipedia for WordPress.

The Ultimate WordPress Toolkit

Get FREE access to our toolkit - a collection of WordPress related products and resources that every professional should have!

Reader Interactions

5 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Syed Balkhi says

    Hey WPBeginner readers,
    Did you know you can win exciting prizes by commenting on WPBeginner?
    Every month, our top blog commenters will win HUGE rewards, including premium WordPress plugin licenses and cash prizes.
    You can get more details about the contest from here.
    Start sharing your thoughts below to stand a chance to win!

  2. Katherine says

    Hi! I just wanted to say thank you so much for this information. I have been having issues setting up my site with a specific theme. I feel in love with the theme but couldn’t figure out the navigation. I spent over 24 hours trying to figure it out. Thank you again!

Leave A Reply

Thanks for choosing to leave a comment. Please keep in mind that all comments are moderated according to our comment policy, and your email address will NOT be published. Please Do NOT use keywords in the name field. Let's have a personal and meaningful conversation.