In Gmail, you don't have to be somewhat but constantly bothered by numbers counting the unread messages in your inbox and each label. You can turn them off.
Labels that hold unseen messages will still appear bold, of course, as, well, a slight reminder.
Hide Unread Counts from Inbox, Folders and Labels in Gmail
Note that hiding unread counts is currently not available in Gmail.
To prevent Gmail from showing the number of unread messages in your inbox and other labels:
- Click the Settings gear in Gmail.
- Select Settings from the menu that comes up.
- Go to the Labs tab.
- Make sure Enable is selected for Hide Unread Counts.
- You can spot the lab by typing "hide unread" under Search for a lab.
- Click Save Changes.
(Updated May 2012)