I'm currently migrating from Helm to ivy+counsel, and I have a problem with the faces ivy applies in the minibuffer for some commands. See this example:

An ivy completion of describe-function

Some of the possible selections are highlighted with a yellow background. However, the face for the currently selected item has a yellow foreground, so it can't be read against that background.

I could of course just switch the foreground of the selected item (via the face ivy-current-match) to have a blue foreground or whatever, but I would also like to know what the difference between the items highlighted via yellow background and the non-highlighted ones is, and what face is used to do that highlighting.

Since all of this happens in a minibuffer, I can't just hit C-u C-x = to get the faces at point (or rather: I can, but I can't move the point to one of these items). Is there a way to see the faces active in the minibuffer?

This does not happen for all selections via ivy. find-file, switch-to-buffer and execute-extended-command seem unaffected (i.e., don't have background-highlighted items), but the help commands (C-h k, C-h v, C-h f etc.) are.

1 Answer 1


It's ivy-highlight-face. According to the source code:

"Forward to `describe-function'.

Interactive functions (i.e., commands) are highlighted according to `ivy-highlight-face'."

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