Internet Social Media

Facebook Tip: How To Disable Close Friends Notifications Or Remove Friends From The Close Friends List

Yaara Lancet 13-07-2012

As you may have noticed, Facebook has been promoting its new “close friends” list in the past couple of months. You might have seen it when logging into Facebook: the top part of your news feed, which is often used by Facebook to promote new features, suddenly offers a way to add your best friends to a special list, where you will be able to follow them separately. So far so good. Several people I know saw this suggestion, and used it to add friends to the list right then and there. After all, many people have lots of Facebook friends, and it could be nice to distinguish your real friends from the mere acquaintances or colleagues.


However, Facebook being Facebook, there’s almost always a catch. In this case, there are two: One, once you add friends to your close friends list, you start getting extra notifications about them. A friend of mine told me she’s suddenly getting all sorts of random Facebook notification on her smartphone, and at first she didn’t even realize it was related to close friends. Two, Facebook makes it very easy to add friends to the list from the top of the news feed, but it’s not as easy removing them. After you’ve figured it out it’s not complicated at all, but finding it among all of Facebook’s different features can take some time.

Below I will show you in a few quick steps how to disable notifications for close friends, control what updates you get from them or remove friends from the list entirely.

Disabling Notification & Choosing What Updates You See

Sometimes, the hardest part in the whole process is finding the Close Friends page. If you’re lucky, you’ll find it right there in your sidebar on your Facebook home. Look for “Friends”, and find “Close Friends” under it.

disable close friends notifications

If you can’t find it there, and it’s not always there for some reason, try clicking “More”. This should give you access to all your friends lists. Don’t be tempted to click the pen button which usually means edit; it doesn’t.


disable close friends

Just for general knowledge, this is where you can create new friends list, if you wish.

Now that you’re on your close friends list, you can start by disabling those pesky extra notifications. Click on “Notifications” on the top right, and choose “Off” to disable completely, or choose to get them just on Facebook or both Facebook and Email. If all you see is On and Off, it means you have summary emails enabled – a great thing to have.

disable close friends


Now you’re rid of notifications and you can enjoy your close friends’ updates without the extra annoyance. But Facebook offers an even more fine-grained way to control what you see from close friends, which could be useful: Click on “Manage List”, and choose “Choose Update Types…”.

disable close friends

Now you can decide which updates you want to get from close friends. For example, you can choose to see only new photos, status updates, comments and likes, and ignore annoying game requests.

disable close friends facebook


All these settings can be configured the same way for other friend lists you’re using, such as acquaintances, or any other custom list.

Removing Friends From Close Friends List

You may have added friends to this list just to see what happens, you may have done it on a whim and now wish to change it, you may have considered someone as a close friend and then changed your mind – many things can happen that would make you want to remove friends from this list. Here is how to do so.

On your close friends page, click on “Manage List” (top right) and this time choose “Edit List”. You can also click the “See All” link above the thumbnail list on the right.

disable close friends facebook


In the dialogue that opens, you can see all the people on your close friends list, and remove any or all of them. Simply hover over a friend’s picture to find the tiny X. Click it to remove that friend from the list. If you want to remove everyone from the list, you’ll have to click all their Xs one by one.

disable close friends notifications

That’s it! Close friends should never bother you again, now.

For more about Facebook lists and other useful Facebook tips, check out Aaron’s 5 Best Hidden Facebook Tricks You Should Make Use Of The 10 Best Hidden Facebook Tricks You Should Make Use Of You might think you know everything there is to know about Facebook, especially if you’re a social media addict. Here are 10 tricks you probably don't know. Read More .

Do you like the close friends list? Are you making use of it or is it just an annoyance? Are there any Facebook tips you want to share? The comments are your playground!

Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the site alive. Read more.

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  1. Charlie
    January 18, 2017 at 4:17 am

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  2. Anonymous
    July 14, 2015 at 5:18 pm

    Good article. But having a hard time finding out what the number next to the favorite means. I see it changes sometimes and other times there is no number.

    I made a number of "friend" groups yesterday so I can better categorize posts and what I see. I hate the default news feed as it does not always show me all the posts from pages I liked or friends and keeps showing the same post I saw before when someone new comments.

    So I created a number of categories for friends and liked pages and made them favorites (i.e., news, technology, TV/media, coworkers, etc...). At first I thought the little number was to show the number of posts, but there are times where I see no number and then go into the favorite to see the posts and see there is a new post since the last time I went in. Other times I would see maybe a 12 showing but then once in it did not look like 12 new posts. Very confusing.

  3. Anonymous
    June 24, 2015 at 1:02 pm

    Hi, when I select the list then click on manage list...the only option I get is edit list...which takes me to the list of friends....
    I do not get the choose of what notifications I do or do not want.
    I know I used to be able to do this.
    I am using google chrome on PC
    Can you help please?

  4. Cathy
    March 11, 2015 at 4:13 pm

    How do people remove the Add Friend box on their profile page for specific people. My friends can add this person but I cannot. Apparently I am not blocked completely because I can see the profile page.

  5. Adam
    December 29, 2012 at 5:29 am

    I don't have that notifications drop down bar but I want notifications Can anyone help?

    • Yaara Lancet
      December 30, 2012 at 11:41 am

      You clicked on "Close Friends" in the sidebar and there's no Notifications button on the top right? Perhaps you're looking at the wrong place?

  6. Mary
    November 10, 2012 at 11:36 pm

    THANK YOU!!!

  7. Nancy B
    October 3, 2012 at 4:55 pm

    On my FB the Edit on Manage List shows up as Settings.....either way you can limit what you see from a friend's list.

    I also made a separate friends category of Limited Profile for gaming friends that I have pre-set on what they can see in my profile. That way I don't have complete strangers knowing about my family and seeing their/my other pics and things.

  8. Arash S Cool
    September 26, 2012 at 5:44 am

    i want that no body see my comments or likes on others photos..
    how i can make like this..
    please answer me as soon as possible,.


    • Yaara Lancet
      September 26, 2012 at 1:09 pm

      Well, my best suggestion would be... not to comment and like? Comments and likes are meant to be seen by others, if no one sees them, why post them?

      You can set it so only your friends see what you like and such through the privacy settings, but you can't set it so no one sees them, not as far as I know, at least.

  9. Haseeb
    September 15, 2012 at 12:26 am

    Thanks so much for the advice and help. I could not find a way to turn these notifications off and now I have via your help.
    Thanks again! :)

  10. yohanna ayuba
    September 12, 2012 at 7:31 pm

    I followed this tips and removed some close friends from my list who always post unnecessary notifications on my wall. I am relieved now. Thank you

  11. Jayashree
    August 24, 2012 at 4:43 am

    This was very helpful. Thank you Yaara.

    • Yaara Lancet
      August 24, 2012 at 7:16 pm

      You're welcome!

  12. John
    July 20, 2012 at 11:16 am

    I have close friends notifications disabled, and I have no one on my list. But I still get notifications. What the heck is going on?

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 20, 2012 at 4:24 pm

      You're not the first one to mention this problem. I'm not sure what Facebook is up to, exactly.

      Are you receiving notifications for everyone, or just specific friends? If I were you, I would check Facebook's notification settings under Account Settings, there might be something there causing the extra notifications.

      Also, maybe logging out and back in would help, you never know.

      • Angie
        July 24, 2012 at 5:45 pm

        I went to Account Settings>Notifications>"Other Updates from Facebook" and there is an option to receive updates about "Friend activity on Facebook". I disabled that, hoping that it will solve the problem of receiving notifications from "Close Friends" even though there is nobody on my "Close Friends" list.

        • Yaara Lancet
          July 24, 2012 at 7:04 pm

          Let us know if that worked for you. It's very weird that you would receive notifications like that for no reason, but it might be some other hidden Facebook setting.

  13. Christopher Lefler
    July 18, 2012 at 11:23 pm

    The funny thing is, I found out about this feature a couple weeks ago and added some of my really good friends to it through their pages. Of course, I started receiving notifications for everything they do, so I manually removed them from the lists the same way, but ended up still receiving the notifications. Hopefully now that I've disabled the notifications in the list, even though it was empty, that should stop.

    All-in-all, I like some of the ideas the team at Facebook has, but their execution could really use some work for much of it.

  14. Karen Ang
    July 18, 2012 at 3:53 pm

    I figured it out but thanks for coming up with a tutorial. I'll share this to my friends.

  15. erickhbhn
    July 18, 2012 at 9:57 am

    Thanks for the tip one more quoestion.Is there any way to remove time line and revert back to the old profile ?

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 18, 2012 at 5:29 pm

      Haha, good question. :) Not that I know of!

    • Christopher Lefler
      July 19, 2012 at 12:12 am

      To the best of my knowledge, there is no way to remove timeline, but there is a browser add-on that allows you to view timeline profiles as the classic profile. Although, IIRC, it accomplishes this by telling Facebook that you're running an older version of IE that doesn't support some of the code that makes timeline possible, and that brings about a whole different set of issues. That being said, a quick Google search should let you find it fairly easily.

      • erickhbhn
        July 19, 2012 at 10:37 am

        Yes I did it.As now being a fan of MUO it's better get many info through this site ! Thanks for reply !

  16. Sarah
    July 17, 2012 at 2:56 am

    I am getting "Close Friend" notification from one friend. I have nobody in the list. Every time she adds a picture I get notified and it has that "Close Friend" icon just before the notification message. How do I get rid of this notifications? It's getting annoying but I don't really want to delete this friend.

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 18, 2012 at 5:29 pm

      That's interesting... you can try visiting that friend's profile and hovering over the "Friends" button. Maybe you'll find that she's part of some list through there.

  17. rish404
    July 16, 2012 at 4:00 pm

    Wow! How complicated can this get? Imagine normal users (who aren't geeks) trying to do this and ending up screwing all their settings

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 18, 2012 at 5:23 pm

      The funny thing is that it's actually not that complicated once you actually find it, but finding it is next to impossible sometimes!

  18. Spencer Vincent
    July 16, 2012 at 1:29 pm

    Thank you! I have to say, without MUO my Facebook would be like a weed growing uncontrollably

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 18, 2012 at 5:22 pm

      That's a nice way to put it. :) Glad you found it useful!

  19. Teodoro Villamarzo
    July 14, 2012 at 6:25 pm

    This is a very useful tip. I don't explore facebook much, I just accept what's there, and what's there is something not-so-appreciated. I wish someone would gather all tips like these into one site or book to make it easier for us who, until now, are not so expert in facebook. Or Twitter. Or whatever :-)

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 15, 2012 at 7:02 am

      We have some free full guides you can explore, like the Unofficial Facebook Privacy Guide and the Complete Twitter Guide.

      Both were written a while ago, and since Twitter, and especially Facebook keep changing, not everything will appear there, but it should be a good start.

    • Christopher Lefler
      July 18, 2012 at 11:31 pm

      The problem is, Facebook changes much of their stuff every 6 months or so, it seems. So many workarounds and tweaks that people find are useless before too long. Just try searching google for the specific tweak you want and you'll have to wade through a bunch of mostly useless tutorials just to find one current enough to work. As helpful as this article is, it'll likely be obsolete by year's end.

      • Yaara Lancet
        July 19, 2012 at 4:10 am

        I completely agree. Many Facebook guides and tips that were written only a year ago would be partly useless now, because so much has changed. All we can do is keep up with the changes and keep providing good tips!

  20. Fahd Abo Hashish
    July 13, 2012 at 3:30 pm

    sometimes it feels like facebook is trying so hard :)

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 14, 2012 at 6:44 am

      Yes, but trying so hard to do what, that's the question........

  21. Will
    July 13, 2012 at 1:46 pm

    this doesn't work you have to click the x on the specific notification on the 'world' symbol. I have no one in my close friends list but it keeps happening.

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 14, 2012 at 6:43 am

      Hi Will,

      There are many notifications you can receive from Facebook, not only close friends. You can take more control of those if you go to Account settings -> Notifications.

      • Will
        July 14, 2012 at 11:58 am

        I know but this one isn't in that section.

        • Yaara Lancet
          July 14, 2012 at 2:20 pm

          Which one is it?

        • Angie
          July 24, 2012 at 5:39 pm

          I have the same problem. Notifications are coming from the "Close friends" list (and are identified with the little yellow star as such) but I have removed everyone from my close friends list. If I go look at it, it says something like "You have not added any friends to your close friends list". I have notifications turned off. Yet I am still getting notifications on my phone and my computer. Makes me angry- not so much because it is a nuisance, but because I apparently do not have any control over it.

  22. Teresa
    July 13, 2012 at 12:57 pm

    This article is just in time! I thought I was going to have to close my account, at least until after the election!

  23. Bobby
    July 13, 2012 at 12:48 pm

    3,000 changes, maybe more
    Facebook, I don't like you very much any more.
    Every day a new feature
    What is this evolving creature?

  24. Hoku Sarroca
    July 13, 2012 at 4:32 am

    With so many changes that is going through with FB, you have to stay on top of the changes. I make use to the settings that is offered me. I have family, close friends , a groups where I post freebies with... I rather do it this way so when I find freebies I do not end up spamming everyone and only those that are actually in it. I also set mine to not tag a familiar face cause it does not work most of the time. I try to keep most of my information totally private. that's just how I like it.

  25. Hoku Sarroca
    July 13, 2012 at 4:32 am

    With so many changes that is going through with FB, you have to stay on top of the changes. I make use to the settings that is offered me. I have family, close friends , a groups where I post freebies with... I rather do it this way so when I find freebies I do not end up spamming everyone and only those that are actually in it. I also set mine to not tag a familiar face cause it does not work most of the time.

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 13, 2012 at 6:12 am

      It's great that you actually use lists. It's actually a nice feature, but I think it came around much too late for most people to actually make use of it. People are just not used to Facebook working that way.

  26. Beth
    July 13, 2012 at 3:43 am

    I really wish there was an option to delete this list completely.

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 13, 2012 at 6:11 am

      Well, if it's empty it shouldn't bother you at all. Just like it doesn't even exist.

      • Angie
        July 24, 2012 at 5:35 pm

        I have ZERO friends on my "Close friends" list. I have notifications turned OFF. I have unchecked every option in the Notification types. And yet I still receive notifications. "Bo updated her status." "Sis added a new photo." I would love to have a clear understanding as to why when my list is empty, and notifications are off, I am still getting notifications both on my phone and my computer.

        • Mary
          July 25, 2012 at 2:08 am

          The same problem is happening to me, Angie. I would also like to know how to get this completely off.

        • Bart
          July 28, 2012 at 5:51 pm

          I have the same problem. It's horrible!

        • Same issue - list empty, notifications off, still getting them
          July 30, 2012 at 8:52 pm

          I'm having the same issue. The list is empty, notifications are off, and I still get notifications with a little news icon & yellow star.

        • Yaara Lancet
          July 30, 2012 at 11:39 pm

          I'm not sure what's causing this since I can't really see what's happening. My best advice would be to visit to notification center and turn everything off one by one. Not the most convenient solution, but it might work.

          I read on Facebook's help page that if you're receiving notifications when you're not supposed to, you should contact them. Might help as well...

        • Cosmina
          August 1, 2012 at 7:17 pm

          The exact same thing was happening to me but I think i finally fixed it. When you get the notification hover over it until you see the X in the corner. Click that and select "turn off".

  27. Nick Bruce
    July 13, 2012 at 3:35 am

    Facebook is one of those things that despite how "simple" the site looks, it has so many features that no one really ever knows where the buttons are and what they do. For instance, I had seen those buttons before but it never occurred to me that they would do what I needed them to do. But I suppose, it could also just be me being slightly stupid.

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 13, 2012 at 6:10 am

      I couldn't agree more. When I first tried doing this I knew it must be really simple, and yet I couldn't find how the heck to do it on my friend's account that's full of junk anyway.

      The more apps and things you have, the harder it is to find what you really need in that sidebar, or anywhere else for that matter.

      • Nick Bruce
        July 13, 2012 at 2:14 pm

        Exactly. What's worse is that the more apps and friends you have, the more you need those controls to be easy to use. And to make it even worse, Facebook pushes you to be open and does nothing but encourage more apps and more friends.

        • Yaara Lancet
          July 14, 2012 at 6:45 am

          What's really annoying to me is how easy they make it to opt in and how hard it is to opt out.

          Just yesterday Facebook started bugging me on the top of my newsfeed to opt in to text message notifications (how horrid, really). All I had to do was click a button. I don't even want to think how hard it would be to cancel these notifications...