Social Media

How to Use Messenger Without Facebook

Philip Bates Updated 04-12-2019

Messenger can work without Facebook! Even if you have sworn off Facebook or want to quit social media altogether, it doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of Facebook’s Messenger service.


Yes, the two are linked. But if you follow these simple steps, you can use the Facebook Messenger without needing to sign up for a Facebook account!

Why Use Messenger?

Can you have Messenger without Facebook? Yes. But should you?

Facebook Messenger is now one of the biggest messaging platforms worldwide. Its main competitor is WhatsApp—another service owned and operated by Facebook. One main motivation for using Messenger is that it’s highly likely most of your friends are using it as well.

But Messenger is about more than just chatting with mates. It’s a powerful multi-purpose app.

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Want to order an Uber? Use Messenger. Need to make a voice or video call? Use Messenger. Want to play a game against your friends? Use Messenger. In fact, some 8 billion messages are sent between users and businesses on Messenger every single month.

That’s without even touching upon all the different ways it lets you send GIFs, stickers, photos, and images to your friends.

And of course, as with WhatsApp, Messenger works across operating systems. You can stay in touch with friends on Android, even if you use an iPhone.

All of your messages are encrypted too. This means that whatever you send can’t be intercepted by third parties. No one can see your message while it’s in transit between devices. It’s the bare minimum you should expect from an instant messaging service these days.


Why Avoid Facebook?

Facebook remains a social media giant, but its popularity is waning. Why? Some are turning to other means of contact. There are solid reasons to believe Snapchat is the new Facebook 5 Reasons Why Snapchat Is the New Facebook Facebook killed MySpace. Could Snapchat kill Facebook? It looks likely, and here are a few reasons why. Read More , especially for the younger generation. Some would prefer just to talk to people face-to-face or use SMS.

Some folk refuse to use Facebook on principle. Others don’t like social platform staples like political debates, pyramid schemes, and pointless status updates.

Some remain troubled by the privacy and security scandals that have plagued Facebook in recent years. You need to keep an eye on your privacy controls if you use the service.

But even if you don’t, Facebook is still tracking you It Doesn't Matter If You're Not On Facebook: They're Still Tracking You A new report claims the Facebook is tracking people without their permission. It doesn't matter if you don't use social networking service: they're still watching you. What can you do about it? Read More with shadow profiles detailing the activities of those not using the app. Signing up to Messenger isn’t going to make much of a difference, compared to the personal information users with Facebook accounts give up. You might as well think of Facebook and Messenger as two different entities.


How to Download Messenger Without a Facebook Account

If you don’t have Facebook, how can you use Facebook Messenger? Thankfully, the process is much easier than you think.

First, you need to know how to install Messenger, which is simple. Just head to the App Store or Google Play, depending on your smartphone or tablet. Make sure it’s the official app, made by Facebook Inc., or you risk installing malware.

Next, you need to know how to sign up to Messenger. When you open the app for the first time, it will encourage you to log into a Facebook account using either your email address or phone number. Instead, click on Create New Account, underneath which it assures you the app will not create a Facebook profile. Instead, it will create a Messenger login.


You are prompted to enter your phone number, and are then texted a confirmation code. Once you confirm this code, you need to enter your name so that people can find you on the app. Once this is done, you’re ready to begin using Messenger.

Some users should also consider using Messenger Lite Facebook Messenger Lite Is the App We've All Been Waiting For If your Android smartphone is running slow or running out of battery too quickly, one app might be to blame: Messenger. The good news is Facebook has launched Messenger Lite. Read More . This is designed to save battery by limiting the number of features available. It’s ideal for anyone with an older Android device or those who suffer from frequent connectivity issues.

Setting Up Messenger Without a Facebook Account

After you activate your account, there are still a few settings to finalize in order to take full advantage of the app.

You might want to add a photo of yourself, so that other users can recognize you.

Next, the app asks if you want to add your contacts to Messenger. If you grant the app these permissions, it will continuously access your address book and automatically add them to Messenger.

If you choose not to automate this process, you can still add your contacts one-by-one to your Messenger account. This can be done by searching for their phone number (if they have their phone associated with their Messenger) or entering their name into the “To” field. You may have to search through several profiles before finding the person you’re looking for.

What Happens If You Delete or Deactivate Facebook?

You might already have a Facebook account, but want to delete your Facebook while keeping Messenger. Don’t make this decision lightly. Before you begin the process, you need to know what it means when you deactivate your Facebook account What Happens When You Deactivate Your Facebook Account? Instead of deleting Facebook, you may want to deactivate your account instead. Here's what that means and what happens when you do. Read More .

In a nutshell, deactivating Facebook still allows you time to think about whether you want to permanently delete your account (as your data is still stored, ready for reactivation).

When you deactivate Facebook, you’ll also be asked if you want to continue using Messenger.

However, if you delete Facebook, your previous messages will read “Facebook User” and no one will be able to respond.

Facebook advises you deactivate your account if you carry on using Messenger

Deactivation means messages will still exist alongside your contacts. Deletion means all your messages will be irretrievably lost from your device (though not on the recipients’ devices), and you’ll need to create a new Messenger account using the above method.

How to Use Facebook Messenger

If you want to use Messenger without joining Facebook, just download the app and click on Create New Account. Add your phone number, and give it access to your address book. Once you’ve added your contacts, you can just click on someone’s name and begin a conversation. It really is as easy as that.

And if you realize that it’s overrated, you can always deactivate Facebook Messenger How to Deactivate Facebook Messenger Deactivating your Facebook account does NOT deactivate Facebook Messenger. Here's how to deactivate Facebook Messenger properly. Read More and switch to a similar instant messaging service like WhatsApp instead.

Related topics: Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Online Chat.

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

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  1. Nick
    January 18, 2020 at 4:22 am

    As I used to have Facebook, I deactivated it and has for over 4 years now but messenger says I need Facebook when trying to create a new account. So annoying

  2. ron
    December 26, 2019 at 6:16 pm

    I would like to know what app you are referring to in this article, because when I download Messenger and click ADD NEW ACCOUNT, the next page is a Facebook sign up page that will not let you go any further without signing up for facebook first. Your article (just like all the other articles claiming you can join Messenger without Facebook) say the next page is a sign up page for Messenger. Your article goes one further by saying "underneath which it assures you the app will not create a Facebook profile." In which "I assure you" nothing of the sort is stated or pops up. What you are taken to next is a page which simply says "Join Facebook" "enter the name you use in real life".
    SO you are either talking about a different app, or you are making up a false article, because nothing you say after the initial downloading of the Messenger app is true what so ever. Which is it???

    • Julia
      December 31, 2019 at 12:58 pm

      Almost the same here: the Messenger Lite app does say "Create an account -- this will not create a Facebook profile" -- yet it redirects to the Fb registration page.
      Maybe this is the latest madness on the side of Facebook.

  3. Bob whiteworth
    May 21, 2019 at 5:58 pm

    Does anyone know how to change your profile picture, I can't find the answer anywhere and when I select a photo from gallery it insists I " choose a photo with a messenger code"
    If anyone knows the answer to this please leave a reply

  4. Gary Moncrieff
    May 8, 2019 at 1:40 am

    Iam not receiving the confirmation code I HAve tried 7 times.

  5. Gary Moncrieff
    May 8, 2019 at 1:37 am

    I am not receiving the comfirmation code I have tried 6 times.

  6. Scott
    October 28, 2018 at 3:28 pm

    Can I use messenger on my PC without joining Facebook or a mobile phone --just on my PC??

    If not is there another service that I can send photos and videos to someone other than trying to do it with email?

  7. PBR
    May 12, 2018 at 3:13 pm

    Signal is the only secure messaging app.
    I don't use any others.

  8. DancerProSlay
    February 25, 2018 at 3:30 pm

    hey so I have messenger without having a facebook account on my android, but I switched now to an iPhone 5s,I tried downloading messenger on my IPhone so my account transfers in that phone as well but it doesn't work.Because I don't own a facebook account and I just have messenger I don't think I can have messenger in two devices.Is that true?Or theres a way for logging into messenger in 2 devices when you have an account connected just to your phone number?If anyone knows please answer

    • Paul S
      November 3, 2018 at 2:27 am

      I'm having the same problem. You cannot "create a new account" with messenger lite. And when trying to log in to my existing messenger (not fb) account, it says Login with Facebook (no other option) and when I input my number, "incorrect phone number, doesn't appear to belong to an account"

      So I conclude messenger lite is only for a Facebook account, I guess I will have to create one and then never use it !

  9. IchabodCrayne
    February 18, 2018 at 3:35 pm

    A few friends using fb who want to send me pics, vids or snippets they've found have said they cannot because I don't use msngr.
    fb app and msngr app are sadly, pre-installed on my device so I thought I'd at least try msngr out. (I long ago had my fb account fully deleted.. yeah I believe it too)
    I cannot use messenger on my device without signing up on fb. Is this a glitch because both apps are pre-installed, who knows?
    I downloaded and tried msngr lite and fb sign up is mandatory as well. So can I use msngr without fb? Apparently not.
    No big deal as I have zero trust in anything associated with fb anyway.
    I simply use the stock messaging app on my device. Missing something from fb is a far bigger issue for those trying to share it with me than it will ever be for me.

    • Vina
      March 25, 2018 at 8:02 pm

      FB was bloatware on my phone as well, but if you go into Settings>Apps>Facebook, there should be an option to disable the app. You still can't delete it, but that might work for you? Not 100% sure, I haven't tried this since I use Facebook over my browser...

  10. Dixie McCombs
    January 9, 2018 at 4:07 pm

    Messenger is often the only way I can reach someone. There is always someone I know that forgets to pay their cell phone bill. When their cell is off, they can't be reached by calling or texting. Messenger is not affected when someone's cell service has been suspended or when they are in an area where service is unavailable,

  11. Jeanette
    August 8, 2017 at 1:56 am

    If you've deactivated you're FB account and delete the app on your phone, will the messenger app that came with FB continue to be active?

  12. Louitzki
    July 31, 2017 at 1:07 pm

    After I logged in (non-fb account), I can't find the "switch account".

  13. Yasmeen
    June 28, 2017 at 5:48 pm

    I prefer messenger as group calling is easily available and possible with many friends at a time.

  14. Lukas
    June 26, 2017 at 10:07 am

    I think Just Messenger works without fb account not Messenger lite. What is your experiences?

    • mark
      August 27, 2017 at 6:10 am

      yes, totally correct. The bloated POS that is messenger doesn't require a facebook account but it does require access to your contacts. the lite version requires a facebook account.
      down the track they are going to stop bloated messenger and force people to sign up to facebook to use the lite version

  15. Yasmeen
    June 20, 2017 at 10:11 am

    My husband and I both are using Messenger registered to our mobile numbers and by NOT signing Facebook account. I have made few groups on Messenger and want to add my husband's messenger as well, but i am unable to add him. I don't get list of users to be added while they appeared for other users in the group (all others are facebook users, while me and my husband are not). Any Suggestion? Also just wanted to ask, if I switch over to a new handset and install as well as register again with my same mobile number, will all the groups that I made be removed/disappear?

  16. Ceyda
    June 3, 2017 at 9:33 am

    I changed my phone, now how can i log in again on me facebook messenger on my new phone? I don't have facebook account, i made it through my phone number to use messenger only.

    • Bret
      August 10, 2017 at 12:43 pm

      I need the answer to this as well

      • Raul Sofia
        December 9, 2017 at 11:33 pm

        i've the same problem

      • Anne
        December 16, 2017 at 3:32 am

        Me too!
        Did you solve it?

    • Conny
      December 10, 2017 at 6:53 pm

      I have the same issue did you find an answer

    • DancerProSlay
      February 25, 2018 at 3:34 pm

      I have the same problem!!!! Did you find any aswers???Please reply

    • Stephanie
      July 13, 2018 at 7:16 am

      I'm having the same issue.

    • Sslb
      September 17, 2018 at 2:33 pm

      I also have this issue. Still no fix?

  17. Ceyda
    June 3, 2017 at 9:31 am

    I changed my phone, how can I log in again on my facebook messenger, I made it through my phone number?

  18. Bek
    May 30, 2017 at 10:05 am

    I'm trying to get messenger with the app but it keeps saying it's sent me a verification code to my phone number. But I don't get it. Any suggestions on what I can do?

  19. Thomas
    January 15, 2017 at 12:58 pm

    Doesn't work on my iPad. I downloaded the app to my Android phone, and everything worked as described. I then downloaded the app to my iPad, but on the logon screen I have the option of filling in email or phone number and password.
    If I enter my phone number and the verification code from the activation of my phone, I get the message "Wrong phone number" (or similar, its not in English).
    If instead I click the "I don't have a FB account" I'm redirected to FB's sign up page.
    So basicly I'm not able to use it on my iPad.
    Same problem on on my desktop.

    • Briallyn Smith
      February 8, 2017 at 10:55 pm

      Oh no! I'm sorry to hear that Thomas – did you try reaching out to the Messenger support team? Really disappointed that this didn't work out for you!

  20. Rusty
    November 11, 2016 at 5:00 pm

    Don't install messenger or facebook, they both chew up resources like crazy! For messenger use DISA for fb use your browser and close out when done.

    • Briallyn Smith
      November 25, 2016 at 2:47 pm

      That's not a bad suggestion either, Rusty :) I use fb on my mobile browser too – gotta conserve that battery life!

  21. Pilleriin
    November 11, 2016 at 10:40 am

    ok, but how to use FB chat without Messenger? no way via FB app, just via browser.
    for example I don't like Messneger app at all.

    • Briallyn Smith
      November 25, 2016 at 2:47 pm

      Unfortunately, they're making it more and more difficult to access Facebook messages on your phone without the Messenger app – it's really frustrating :( Maybe the new updates on the app will make it worthwhile for you?