I've been working hard to get emacs and org-mode working inside of my tmux workflow. And i've got a pretty decent setup. :)

I installed org-bullets to get utf8 bullets, it worked. But even if I set into my emacs init file that I want the clean view it show the previous stars for every item. Also tried with the in-file solution but nothing.

Here is specifically what I tried

on my init:

;; Hide leading stars
(setq org-startup-indented t
      org-hide-leading-stars t)

On my org file:

#+STARTUP: indent

It works perfectly on the windowed environment, buy inside my terminal stars didn't disappear

1 Answer 1


The variable org-hide-leading-stars just uses the face org-hide behind the scenes.

Pressing C-hv (to get help on a variable) and then typing org-hide-leading-starsEnter will show you what you need to do.

The documentation for the variable says

Non-nil means hide the first N-1 stars in a headline. This works by using the face org-hide for these stars. This face is white for a light background, and black for a dark background. You may have to customize the face org-hide to make this work.

Emphasis mine.

You can customize the face by typing M-xcustomize-faceEnterorg-hideEnter

Set the foreground color of the face to the colour of your background in tmux.

  • This should be the beginning of the answer. Thank you so much. Though, even after customizing the org-hide face, it doesn't work in -nw mode, just in the gui. :( Commented Jun 13, 2016 at 17:04
  • 2
    Some follow up information for Mac+iTerm users: if you can still see the stars, even after following the advice of Gambo, then: 1. open your iterm preferences 2. navigate to the colour preferences for your preferred profile 3. drag the minimum contrast slider all the way to the left
    – Sam
    Commented Oct 16, 2016 at 21:07

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