Which temporary email services are you using

Beginner's Guide to Disposable Email Addresses

Everyone today uses email to go from communicating with friends and colleagues to using your email address as an online passport. Almost every app and service you sign up for today requires an email address. This also applies to most loyalty cards, contest entries, and more.

It's nice to have one address for everything, but getting dozens of email messages every day that you really don't want isn't nice. Also, it's not uncommon for shops these days to have their databases hacked, so your email address is more likely to end up on spam lists. In addition, it is almost impossible to do anything 100% privately.

There are a few different ways to tame your Gmail and Outlook inboxes, but sometimes you need something more drastic: a one-way email address

Solutions range from simple Yahoo disposable email addresses, to simple Gmail customizations to your main email address to make filtering easier, to a 100% anonymous email address. Disposable email addresses are a great way to restore paper letter privacy and help keep your inbox tidy by default.

Here's how to create and start using disposable email addresses. (graphic source)

Before you dive into this tutorial, download our new eBook (FREE): The Ultimate Guide to Inbox Zero Mastery. It contains a number of additional professional e-mail strategies to help you organize your e-mail inbox properly.

In this tutorial, I'll show you everything you need to know about disposable email addresses and how to use disposable email addresses in several popular email systems like Gmail, Yahoo, Mailinator, etc.

What is a disposable email address?

Let's start by explaining what an available email address is.

Almost every service requires you to provide an email address. However, the problem with spam and unsolicited email messages is growing. Every time you provide your email address, you increase the chances of receiving even more spam if the company you are providing your information to is hacked or your email address is sold. Many users of single-use email addresses are concerned with privacy as well as spam.

Disposable email addresses can help solve the problem. By providing a different email address each time you sign up for Services and recording those unique email addresses, you can see how your information is getting to spammers.

Many available email addresses will forward messages to your actual email address. A few single-use e-mail services make single-use e-mail available for a limited time only.

Why should I use a one-way email address?

The idea of ​​the one-way email address conjures up images of black hat hackers and the internet underworld that distract most of us. However, there are a number of legitimate reasons you might want a freely available email address. These are used regularly by our Tuts + team. Here are some of them:

  • You want to sign up for a store loyalty card, but you haven't received any emails from the store promoting new products. Instead, use a one-way email address and you'll never have to see those emails. If the store is hacked, your email address will not be stolen.
  • You have just programmed a great web app and you want to test it thoroughly before releasing it in the wild. Receive 100 disposable email addresses, use them for dummy accounts, and test them out.
  • You want to sign in to a different account using a web app. You may want another IFTTT account to automate a second Twitter account that you set up for your website. A different e-mail address than the standard setting is required for both. So don't just use a different email inbox, just use a one-way email address.
  • You want to write a completely anonymous email to the editor of a newspaper. With paper mail, you can do this by sending a letter from a PO box with no return address. However, using a disposable email address is one of the few ways you can do it online today.

These are just a few of the many reasons you might consider getting an email address. Below are the apps and tips you need to create and use available email addresses.

Here's how to create a disposable email address and start using it

The most obvious way to create a disposable email address would be to set up a new email account with Gmail, Yahoo, or some other free email service. However, this is a problem with a new email address. It would work if you want one email to be sent out to business and another to use for personal communication. However, if you want more accounts, available email addresses are a better option.

Here are some of the best ways to create disposable, temporary, or disposable email addresses and use them in seven popular email systems:

1. Gmail - Generate temporary email address aliases

Ever wanted to know who actually leaked your email address when spam came up in your inbox? Now you can with custom email addresses in Gmail. Gmail doesn't offer anonymous, one-way email addresses. However, you can include any time period in your email address or add a plus sign to the end of your email and add any email alias after the text.

For example, if you signed up for the MegaCorp, Inc. newsletter, you will not participate. Instead, add a plus at the end of your email and enter what you want afterwards. For example, you can send an email to or.

If you get spam, click on the little down arrow next to it Me:. This will show where the email came from and who it was sent to, along with other details. You can then see which email alias it was sent to. So if you got a promotional offer about toys and look at who it was sent to and see, you know who gave your email address. The + Megacorp informs you that the MegaCorp, Inc. newsletter has shared your email address. Time to unsubscribe!

Receive email with an available email address from Gmail.

The same email aliases are a great way for you to automatically filter incoming email, even if the services you sign up for don't consider you spam. You can set up custom Gmail filters for each of your email aliases and automatically archive emails from these addresses with specific labels.

Note, of course, that these Gmail addresses are not availablePrivate, no more than your normal email address. However, they are the perfect option for seeing how users received their emails and for automating the filtering of your emails regardless of your list.

For more information on Gmail filters, see this tutorial:

2. Mailinator - email addresses for public emails

Mailinator is based on a unique concept: anyone can access any inbox as long as they know their email address. You can literally come up with the inbox name you want (say, add to the end, and use it in any email address field. Sign up for an online newsletter, for example.

To create a one-way email address with Mailinartor: Go to the Mailinator website, enter the new email address and click the green boxCheck it and the inbox will open - no password required. You will see all the emails sent to this address and you can even notice emails that you haven't signed up for if someone else has previously used the same email address.

The email inbox interface works exactly as expected. You can read and reply to emails, download attachments, and much more. It's a fully functional email, so any email you receive will be public to anyone who knows the email address.

Check any mailbox on Mailinator.

Mailinator is not private, the address is not tied to you. All of the responses to this are public - but it's an incredibly easy way to get an available email address for anything you want. This makes it perfect for a completely anonymous email address (even if any replies you might get are public) or for testing out your new web app. You can even set up Mailinator in your own domain so that you can test your own services even better.

3. Airmail - Randomized, one-way email addresses

Airmail is another private email service that is very similar to Mailinator, but with more privacy. You click a button and you will automatically receive a random email with a unique code that will allow you to view all the emails that come in online without a password.

To get a new email address, just go to the Airmail site and click Received temporary email Button. Seconds later, an inbox view will be loaded with your new randomly assigned email address and the unique access code in the address bar. You have to remember both or copy the URL with both codes in the address in order to be able to see the received emails.

For example, suppose the email address I was randomly assigned is [email protected] in the address bar of my browser, the address was shown asgetairmail.com/tutyw/INGX. In this case the first code is the address of the email (it does not contain the randomly assigned domain name) andINGX was my unique code. In the future, to access the mailbox, you will simply have to type or copy the URL from the browser's address bar. You can then access your email address. However, this only works up to 24 hours after your last visit to the page. The emails are deleted.

A random airmail email address.

This is a great option for creating a random email address. Note, however, that the site is not SSL encrypted. As a result, your communication is still not completely private, and the extra steps you need to take to get an address still don't mean the best service for testing random accounts in your new app.

4. MailDrop - Fast temporary email addresses

Another public option for a free temporary email address is MailDrop. This service provides disposable email addresses that are deleted after 24 hours of inactivity.

To receive a MailDrop email address, simply enter a username in the field at the top right in front of @ maildrop.cc. Then click on GO> Button to view all messages sent to this email address.

For example, if I entered the web designer username in the space, my temporary email address would be [email protected]

A temporary email address with maildrop.

The messages that a MailDrop inbox can receive are limited. Each MailDrop inbox can only receive ten messages. The size limit for received messages is 100 KB. In addition, any attachments to a message sent to a MailDrop inbox are removed from the message and discarded. So MailDrop is not a good option for sharing files.

It's also important to note that MailDrop inboxes are not private. Anyone with the email address can see the messages in the inbox.

5. Abine Blur App - Secure disposable email addresses

Abine is a company that is committed to data protection. All of their products are designed with this in mind. Blur is no exception.

Blur is available as an extension for Firefox or for Android and Apple devices. It creates masked email accounts on-site when you need to enter your email address on an online form. Masked email addresses provided by Blur cannot be traced back to you.

Use Abine Blur anonymous email addresses to hide your real email address.

After filling out a form with an anonymous email address provided by Blur, you can log into the website and search for messages sent to your masked email addresses. You can also forward messages sent to an anonymous email address to your real email. If you find that a particular anonymous email address is being bombarded by spam, just turn off forwarding.

However, Abine Blur is designed to not only keep your real email information private. It can also help store passwords securely. The premium version can also mask your phone number and credit card number. You can even use a masked credit card number to make an online purchase.

Information stored with Blur is extremely secure. It is encrypted with your password. Even Abine cannot access your data.

6. Mailsac - Disposable email addresses for testing

Mailsac sees itself as a service that provides anonymous e-mail addresses that can be used for testing. Like many other services, the emails are public if you simply use the generator on the website. Mailsac also offers you the option of creating a private account.

To use a free email address, just enter your username in the email generator's space.

Set up an available email address with Mailsac.

Press the Check out their emails! Button to view all messages sent to this email address.

You can use MailSac to avoid spam in your regular email address, to sign up for online services, or to test. Note, however, that messages received through the public version of MailSac are not persistent. Messages will be deleted from the public inbox within three days of receipt. However, this can vary.

Mailsac is open source via GitHub. You can view the API documents and API access is available for paid accounts. Because it is scalable and can use popular protocols such as POP3 access, it is a good choice for testing.

7. Yahoo! Mail - Unique one-way email addresses

Gmail isn't the only traditional email service that has available email addresses. Yahoo! Email addresses have built-in email addresses and are really unique addresses, not just the email aliases offered by Gmail.

Yahoo! The available e-mail addresses consist of a basic name and a keyword. All of the addresses that you create are structured as follows[email protected]. The base name can only be specified once and must be unique-All of your addresses have the same base name. You can then create up to 500 keywords and get up to 500 unique email addresses in one account.

Sign in to set up your base name Click on the Yahoo accountthe settingsIcon at the top right of the page and then click OK the settings in the drop-down menu. Then click security. You can find one thereCreate the base name Possibility; Select it, then choose a private name to use at the beginning of your available email addresses. After creating a base name, clickAdd to add your keywords for specific addresses. You can then choose whether to block spam and use filters for this address by default and to which inbox the e-mail should be forwarded.

How to create a Yahoo email address.

You can then use the new Yahoo single-use email addresses as you would any other single-use email address. You can even get the address in the Yahoo! Mail app when you compose a new email if you want.

It is worth remembering that your Yahoo! Email addresses aren't 100% private - they're more private than Gmail aliases, of course, but they're still tied to your primary email account.However, they are great for most temporary email addresses and give you more privacy than Gmail with the same benefits as your emails in an inbox and the easy way to filter them the way you want.

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Using disposable email addresses is a good step in taming the mess that can build up in the inbox of your main email account. But there is more you can do. Start by applying pro strategies that can improve your approach to email management.

Learn how to properly organize your inbox so you can keep your most important emails up to date. That way, you'll be more effective with email and spend less time in your inbox.

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This is far from a complete list of services that available email addresses offer, but the tools available here are plentiful to help restore a bit of privacy and security to your email.

You don't want to use disposable email addresses for everything, but with options like the options offered by Yahoo and Gmail, you can filter your emails with custom filters centered around the disposable email addresses that you choose use for certain services, make something more productive.

We have already answered the question: what is a one-way email address? However, if you have any other questions about using a temporary email address, feel free to leave a comment below.

Note to editors: This post was originally published in 2014. It has been extensively revised to bring it up to date, accurate, and up to date by our staff - with special assistance from Laura Spencer.