Aside from manually removing items from Previous Recipients, is there a way to type in an address in Apple Mail exactly as I'd like, without autocompletion?

For instance, address completion often uses a "pretty name" that differs from what I'd like for an outgoing email (e.g., if another person has sent me mail with the name formatted differently.) When this happens, it's genuinely difficult to find a way to enter the address exactly as I intend to.

(I don't want to disable autocompletion completely, just when typing certain addresses. That said, I don't believe there is a preference to turn it off completely either.)

1 Answer 1


After brute-force experimentation, I found the solution is the Escape key. Type either "Esc, comma", "Esc, Tab", or Esc and then click on the body or another header.

Esc must come after the very last character. (I'd prefer a way to mute autocomplete until I start on a new address, because the flashing makes it hard to type.)

Other natural-seeming solutions do not work. E.g., if I type "delete", Mail hides the autocompletion, appearing to respect the typing. If you then type "Tab" or "comma", or click elsewhere, though, even without another character typed, it replaces the adress with the first match in its list, and you must delete and start over.

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