Gmail likes to keep toolbars short and icons condensed, possibly to the detriment of clarity. Fortunately, Gmail also offers text labels for most buttons. They are only slightly longer and mostly explain themselves.
Get Text Buttons in Gmail
To choose between text labels and icons on buttons in Gmail:
- Click the Settings gear in your Gmail's toolbar.
- The gear will always appear in lieu of a text label, even with text enabled for buttons.
- Select Settings from the menu that appears.
- Go to the General tab.
- Make sure Text is checked under Button labels: for text on buttons.
- Select Icons for pictograms.
- Click Save Changes.
(Updated November 2012)