PIP is the package management tool for Python libraries. If you’re using Python on your Mac to build applications, you’ll want to install PIP to easily install and use these libraries and software packages.

Assuming you already have you installed python, you may need to install or update PIP. There are several ways to do this, depending on your level of risk.

If you want to install PIP on a Mac, follow the steps below.

Using the Ensurepip method to install pip on Mac for Python 3

If you are using Python 3.4 or later, you can use the command ensurepip. This is the official method for installing pip in Python, providing a safe method to install the application (if necessary).

To install pip using ensurepip:

  1. Open the Mac Terminal app through the Launchpad.
  2. In Terminal, type python -m ensurepip either python3 -m ensurepip and press Enter.
  3. If PIP is missing, ensurepip will install PIP. Follow the additional instructions on the screen to complete this process.
  4. If you want to update PIP, type python -m ensurepip -upgrade either python3 -m ensurepip -upgrade.

Using the Pip Install Script on Mac for Python 3

An alternative method to install PIP on Mac is to use the pip install script (get-pip.py). This is only available for Python 3 users.

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Note: This script is safe to use, but we always advise caution when allowing an online script to run on your Mac. You should only use this PIP installer script if you are aware of the risks and are willing to proceed. Otherwise, use one of the other methods instead.

To use the get-pip script to install PIP on Mac:

  1. open the app Terminal through the Launchpad.
  2. In Terminal, type curl https://bootstrap.pypa.io/get-pip.py -o get-pip.py and press Enter.
  3. allow that curl have time to download the script on your Mac.
  4. Once this is done, write python3 get-pip.py and press Enter.
  5. Let the installation time elapse.

How to use Homebrew to install PIP on Mac

If you want an easier way to install PIP, you can use Homebrew to do it. Homebrew is a third-party open source package manager for your Mac. It allows you to quickly install apps via the Terminal app, including PIP.

Before continuing, make sure install homebrew on your mac.

To use Homebrew to install PIP on a Mac:

  1. open the app Terminal via the Launchpad menu.
  2. In the Terminal window, type brew install python and press Enter.
  3. Homebrew will install the latest version of Python (including PIP). Allow time for it to complete.
  4. To finish the PIP installation, type brew unlink python && brew link python and press Enter.

How to check the version of PIP on a Mac

Have you recently upgraded your Python installation and want to check that your version of PIP is up to date? Fortunately, you can quickly check your version of PIP using the Terminal app.

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You can also run this command to check that PIP is installed correctly on your Mac.

To check the version of PIP on a Mac:

  1. Open the Ter appmfinal
  2. In Terminal, type pip -version and press Enter.
  3. Alternatively, type python3 -m pip -version and press Enter.

How to update the PIP on a Mac

macOS comes with an outdated version of Python. If you have upgraded to a newer version, you may have an older version of PIP. You may also need to update PIP if you update your version of Python later.

To update the PIP on a Mac:

  1. Open the Terminal app.
  2. In Terminal, type python3 -m pip install -upgrade pip and press Enter.
  3. Wait for the command to complete. If the latest version is installed, PIP will return a requirement already met message.
  4. To check if the update was successful, type pip-version and press Enter.
  5. If the PIP version has not changed, repeat the steps above.

Using Python on macOS

If you’ve followed the steps above correctly, you should be able to quickly install PIP for Python on a Mac. You can then use it to install external Python packages and libraries from the official PyPI repository.

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