How to Recover Deleted Text Messages on iPhone: A Step-by-Step Guide

Accidentally deleting an important text message can be a nightmare, but don’t panic just yet! If you’ve got an iPhone, there’s a good chance you can recover those lost messages. Whether it’s a cherished memory, a vital piece of information, or an important contact, recovering deleted text messages on an iPhone is a task that can often be accomplished without too much hassle.

Step by Step Tutorial: Recover Deleted Text Messages iPhone

Before we dive into the steps, let’s understand what we’re about to do. We’ll be exploring a few different ways to recover your deleted text messages, including using iCloud, iTunes, and third-party software. Remember, time is of the essence, so act quickly for the best results.

Step 1: Check Recently Deleted Folder

First, check if your iPhone has a Recently Deleted folder.

While iPhones don’t have a Recently Deleted folder for text messages like they do for photos, it’s always worth double-checking your messages list to ensure you didn’t archive the conversation by mistake.

Step 2: Recover from iCloud Backup

Restore your iPhone from an iCloud backup that was made before you deleted the text messages.

If you have iCloud Backup enabled, your phone automatically backs up every night when connected to Wi-Fi and plugged in. To restore messages from a backup, you’ll need to erase your iPhone and set it up again, selecting ‘Restore from iCloud Backup’ during the setup process.

Step 3: Recover from iTunes/Finder Backup

Use an iTunes or Finder backup to restore your text messages.

If you regularly connect your iPhone to your computer and use iTunes (or Finder on macOS Catalina and later) to create backups, you can restore your phone from one of these backups. Just like with iCloud, you’ll need to erase your iPhone and set it up from scratch, then choose ‘Restore from Mac or PC’ during the setup.

Step 4: Use Third-Party Software

Utilize third-party software to retrieve deleted text messages.

There are several reliable third-party apps available that can help you recover deleted text messages without having to erase your iPhone. These programs typically work by scanning your iPhone’s memory for deleted data. Make sure to research and select a reputable software.

Step 5: Contact Your Phone Carrier

As a last resort, contact your phone carrier for help.

Some phone carriers keep a record of your text messages just like they do with your call logs. It’s a long shot, but if you’re desperate to recover an important message, it might be worth reaching out to them. Keep in mind that they may only provide this service under certain circumstances, such as legal requests.

After completing these actions, you’ll have gone through all the main methods to recover deleted text messages on your iPhone. Remember, it’s important to act quickly, as the longer you wait, the harder it becomes to retrieve lost messages.

Tips: Recover Deleted Text Messages iPhone

  • Always back up your iPhone regularly to either iCloud or your computer to minimize the risk of permanent data loss.
  • If you realize you’ve deleted an important message, avoid using your phone to prevent new data from overwriting the deleted messages.
  • Third-party recovery tools should be used with caution; always ensure you’re using software from a trusted provider.
  • After recovering your deleted messages, consider archiving important conversations to avoid future panic.
  • Keep in mind that successful recovery isn’t guaranteed, but following these tips will give you the best chance at getting those messages back.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I recover a deleted text message if I don’t have a backup?

It’s possible, but less likely. Without a backup, you’ll need to use third-party software that can scan your iPhone for deleted data.

Are text messages stored on a SIM card?

No, text messages are not stored on a SIM card. They’re saved in the iPhone’s internal memory.

Will restoring from a backup delete my current data?

Yes, restoring your iPhone from a backup will erase your current data and replace it with the data from the backup.

How long do phone carriers keep text messages?

This varies by carrier, but most keep records for a few days to several months.

Is it possible to recover deleted texts from years ago?

The likelihood decreases significantly as time passes. It’s best to attempt recovery as soon as possible.


  1. Check Recently Deleted Folder
  2. Recover from iCloud Backup
  3. Recover from iTunes/Finder Backup
  4. Use Third-Party Software
  5. Contact Your Phone Carrier


Losing text messages can feel catastrophic, especially if they hold sentimental value or critical information. However, with the right steps and immediate action, you stand a good chance of recovering those precious deleted text messages on your iPhone. From checking for backups to using specialized software, the strategies outlined offer a comprehensive approach to retrieving what you thought was lost forever.

Remember, prevention is better than cure. Regularly back up your iPhone to avoid future stress and always be cautious about what you delete. If you find yourself in a situation where you need to recover deleted text messages, refer back to this guide, and hopefully, you’ll be reading those lost messages again in no time.

Join Our Free Newsletter

Featured guides and deals

You may opt out at any time. Read our Privacy Policy