Messi scored two at the Lusail Stadium and also found the net in the shoot-out – as did Mbappe after the match ended 3-3 at the end of extra-time – but it was the South Americans who came out on top on penalties.
Mbappe became just the second man to score three times in a World Cup final after England's Geoff Hurst in 1966 and finished ahead of Messi, named as the tournament's best player. Messi is also the first player to score in the group stage and all four rounds in the knockout phase.
Mbappe is only the second player to find the target in successive World Cup finals after Vava, who scored in Brazil's wins in 1958 and 1962.
The 23-year-old has scored 12 World Cup goals in 14 matches and is level with Brazil legend Pele in sixth on the all-time list.
The Paris Saint-Germain forward's four goals in World Cup finals are also the most in history.
Argentina goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez secured the Golden Glove award for the best goalkeeper, while his 21-year-old midfield teammate Enzo Fernandez sealed young player of the tournament.
The six-goal final between France and Argentina set a World Cup record of 172 at this year's tournament.
The previous tournament record of 171 goals was set in 1998 and 2014. The 1998 tournament in France was the first edition in the current 64-game, 32-team format.
A new record is likely to be set at the 2026 World Cup, which has been expanded to 48 teams playing either 80 or 104 games.
In the gallery above, you can see who were the rest of the top-scorers in Qatar. To view the next image, just swipe.