Considerable efforts have been made to characterize active enhancer elements, which can be annotated by accessible chromatin and H3 lysine 27 acetylation (H3K27ac). However, apart from poised enhancers that are observed in early stages of development and putative silencers, the functional significance of cis-regulatory elements lacking H3K27ac is poorly understood. Here we show that macroH2A histone variants mark a subset of enhancers in normal and cancer cells, which we coined ‘macroH2A-Bound Enhancers’, that negatively modulate enhancer activity. We find macroH2A variants enriched at enhancer elements that are devoid of H3K27ac in a cell type-specific manner, indicating a role for macroH2A at inactive enhancers to maintain cell identity. In following, reactivation of macro-bound enhancers is associated with oncogenic programs in breast cancer and its repressive role is correlated with the activity of macroH2A2 as a negative regulator of BRD4 chromatin occupancy. Finally, through single cell epigenomic profiling, we show that the loss of macroH2A2 leads to increased cellular heterogeneity that may help to explain the role of macroH2A variants in defining oncogenic transcriptional dependencies.