Despite the increasing number of websites, it is difficult to stand out from your competitors even if you are following the most recent UX trends. Many websites look identical, which confuses users. What makes brands unique if their online representations are almost identical? Design is an amazing tool to identify and differentiate brands.
2020 was over, but UI/UX trends for 2021 were moving in a new direction. Simple interfaces were matched with high-powered, high performance trends such as AI, 3D as well as Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality.
The pandemic hit, and along with it, a new user base that relied on simple-to-use technology. Designers had to change gears. Accessibility was the main priority. Clear directions, large typography and simple navigation were crucial (even life-saving).
Image source: Dark Mode
Dark mode is also known as night mode or dark theme. It converts traditional formats to a light-on–dark scheme. With the launch of iOS 13 and Android 10, Dark mode was made famous. Reputable brands such as Apple, Instagram, Facebook and Facebook are using dark mode to enhance the design aesthetics of their websites and apps.
Studies have shown that blue screens can reduce melatonin production, which can impact sleep. Apps that are in dark mode emit less light which decreases eye strain and sleep quality. Dark mode is a good choice, especially for apps that are long-term. To support accessibility and user preferences, we recommend UI developers design in both dark and light modes.
When designing for dark mode, there are a few things to keep in mind. Misdesigned dark modes can cause eye strain and make it difficult to read in light. The theme should be balanced, easily readable, and fun. It should not be distracting or annoying to users that dark mode is used.
Image source: Apple Storytelling
Another trend in UI design is storytelling. It creates positive emotions, relations and also builds trust between brands and users. Stories are a way to communicate data creatively and in an informative manner to the user.
Storytelling is a tool that helps with UI design in:
Attract the user, make it easier to use the site and persuade them.
Design customer touchpoints that are effective and encourage customers to return again and again.
Use conflict and plot to tell a compelling story about your brand.
Designers are constantly looking for ways to grab the attention of consumers and keep their business. Sometimes, old methods can still be effective. This is evident in the recent increase in animation. In 2022, the animation is set to become one of the best ways to reach users (we're super-visual creatures, after all). This JSON-based, open-source tool allows designers to quickly create, test, and display animated designs. These animations aren't just GIFs. They are much smaller and have superior image quality.
Neumorphism, a hybrid of skeuomorphism flat design and skeuomorphism is gaining popularity for its innovative yet subtle look. This design uses the same background as the watermark setting for the user interface (UI). After the user has selected the element, it protrudes from the screen and appears as if it is emerging from the screen. Neumorphism blends solid colors with shadowing and contrast effects.
When starting with neumorphic designs, the rule is to keep the background and UI elements the same color. Today's product designs rely heavily on neumorphism to design various aspects of the user interface.
Many companies have introduced new services and features since the outbreak of the pandemic. Designers and developers needed to be able to react quickly and deliver on time due the unpredictable nature the pandemic. These are functional but don't always offer the best user interfaces.
These additions will be refined as the world recovers its feet. 2022 is a great opportunity to make them more usable and not just a Frankenstein's monster. The challenge will be to add more features and services without affecting the overall experience. It's not enough just to maintain. Apps and pages must be simplified, uncomplicated, and easy to use (at least at the front-end).
Keep it simple.
Skeuomorphism is the visual approach to designing the first graphical user interfaces. The recycle bin icon is perhaps the most famous example. It mimics a real recycle bin. It was logical to design smartphones and personal computers in a way that would make it easy for first-time users to use the digital world. Skeuomorphic designs emphasize similarities to the real world rather than visual appeal in order to provide an intuitive user experience. In the early versions of Apple's mobile operating system, iOS, skeuomorphism was heavily used across the user interface.
Image source: Mac 3D Elements
The use of 3D elements in a UI design is not new. They have evolved to be more inclusive, diverse, and immersive over time. To make them stand out, UI designers combine 3D elements with animated elements. Take, for instance, the NASA official website.
These are some of the reasons immersive 3D elements have become so popular.
3D elements are deeper, more informative, interactive, and more complex.
It's easier to communicate energy, texture, or meaning using 3D elements.
With the help of new design tools, it is now possible to create immersive 3D elements.
Immersive 3D elements will be a major UI design trend for 2022. To get the best out of them, make sure your website/app is fast and efficient. It will not be useful if it isn't.
Modern user experience designers are using virtual reality (VR) in a way that is unprecedented. Designers not only look at the fundamental principles of photography, sketching and motion design but also consider other parameters like depth, curved design and interactions.
These are some considerations made by designers:
Create a 360-degree field for your vision.
A curved design makes it easier to read text and images.
Do not transfer 2D elements into 3D elements. This will ruin the immersive VR experience.
All UI elements, menus, text and other information about objects are displayed at the same depth.
VR needs to be able to show when an element is interactive and when interactions occu
NFT began to integrate into all spheres. They expanded the horizons of digital and set new rules for traditional art, fashion, retail and brands of different specifics and product design.
The metaverse can be described as a virtual reality or augmented reality world that is technologically distinct from individual users. It is also one of the most current product UX trends that keeps merging and brings new horizons in terms of how modern UX/UI might look and function. Web design is more than text and images.
Glassmorphism refers to a UI trend that gives design elements the appearance of transparent frosted glass. It gives users the illusion of being able to see through it and has a sense of verticality. The design elements appear layered, with objects floating in space and the top layer appearing like virtual glass. You can simulate the look of frosted glass by using a background blurred and semi-transparent outline. Backgrounds must have a sufficient tonal variation to allow the glass effect to be visible. Glassmorphism has three main characteristics: transparency, light borders, as well as vivid or pastel colors. Designers are arguing about whether this trend promotes accessibility. This effect can be used only in backgrounds since a UI must still function without a background. The interface could be used by visually impaired users. Michal Malewicz was also the one who coined "Glassmorphism". This UI design style gained popularity after Apple's 2020 update to macOS Big Sur. Glassmorphism has a minimalistic, eye-catching visual appeal.
These were the top UI trends for design in 2022. The list below will help you find inspiration and give a new look to your projects. These designs show how technology and art can be combined to create incredible experiences.