How to search notes in Bear

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You can instantly search all your notes in Bear for text, lists, attachments, and more. With Bear Pro, you can even search text in photos and PDFs.

  • Click (Mac) or tap (iOS) the search icon at the top of the Note List. With a hardware keyboard, Command + F also works
  • Type a keyword or phrase into the search box that appears. Bear searches as you type
  • Click any note and move between results inside it with Command + G (with a keyboard) or arrow up/down (iOS)

Advanced search options

To help you find the right notes when you need them, Bear supports a variety of search commands, operators, and something we call Special Searches.

Most of these search commands can be combined to further filter your notes for just what you want. For example, a search like @untagged @attachments recipes or errands  will find all notes that are untagged, contain attachments like files or photos, and also contain either recipes or errands as keywords.

Search operators

Similar to internet search engines, Bear supports a handful of search operators to include or exclude keywords and tags.


  • You can search for any #tag
  • You can search for a #tag# excluding its nested tags with !#tags
  • Exclude a specific tag from search results with -#tag
  • To search for subtags only search for #*/tag

Pro Tip: Search for a tag, then click the new note button to create a note with that tag already applied.

Please Note: Double pound sign tags like numbers #2021# or dates #10/04/2021# also need to be wrapped in pound signs in the search field.


You can search an exact word sequence by enclosing your sentence with two quote characters ". For example:

"John Appleseed was here"

Multiple keywords

Search for all notes that contain one of two keywords with the OR option. For example: a search like recipe or errands will find all notes that contain either of those terms. And you can use it with more than two keywords or phrases.


To exclude specific words from search result, use the minus symbol -. For example, if you want to search for every recipe without broccoli, you can type:

recipes -broccoli

The minus operator can be also used with quoted sentences or a Special Search (learn more below). For example:

-"John Appleseed" or -@code

That will search for notes not containing the exact phrase of John Appleseed or code snippets.

Special Searches

Bear supports Special Search triggers to filter your notes for types of content and attributes such as lists, photos, creation date, titles, and more. Special Searches, tags, and quoted phrases are highlighted in search results.

  • @tagged: shows notes that have at least one tag
  • @untagged: shows notes without tags
  • @today: show notes modified today
  • @yesterday: show notes modified the day before today
  • @lastXdays: show notes modified in the last X days (replace X with any number)
  • @createdXdays: show notes created the last X day (replace X with any number)
  • @images: shows notes that contain images
  • @files: shows the notes that contain files
  • @attachments: shows notes with files or images
  • @task: shows notes which include at least one task, either complete or not
  • @todo: shows only notes with incomplete todos
  • @done: shows only notes with all todos completed
  • @code: shows notes which includes at least one code snippet
  • @title: Search only in note titles
  • @locked: Show locked notes
  • @pinned: Shows pinned notes
  • @date: show all the notes modified in a specific date, e.g. @date(2018-09-05) , @date(09-2018), @date(2018)
  • @cdate: show all the notes created in a specific date, e.g. @cdate(2018-09-05), @cdate(09-2018), @cdate(2018)
  • Note that for @date and @cdate, there is no space between the command and first parenthesis

These Special Searches can be combined with any search term for more specific results. For example: @images @todo “bear faq” will search for all the notes that have images, uncompleted todos, and the exact phrase of bear faq.

Dates for @cdate and @date can be expressed in the ISO8601 format @date(2018-12-23) or according to your device’s local date format, for example @date(12/23/2018) in the U.S.A.

Group 9


Some solutions to common problems.

Sync Troubleshooting Conflicted Notes Bear's Database

Still in trouble? Look for answers on the blog, forum or drop us a line.

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