7 Core Gestalt Principles in UI Design


Visual design and psychology are linked and can influence one another. Gestalt principles can help us understand and control these links. So today we Design Up to Date will look into these Gestalt Principles in UI design.

What is Gestalt Principles?

In the 1920s a group of German psychologists developed theories around how people perceive the world around them, called Gestalt principles. It is built on the theory that “an organized whole, is perceived as greater than the sum of its parts”.



The Gestalt Principle Theory

And today designers use these to engage users via powerful -yet natural- “tricks” of perspective and best practice design standards.

But why these principles are so important for UI design? Because:

  • They will help you make your designs more efficient and interactive. You’ll know how to use hierarchy and understand how to group objects on the screen correctly.
  • You will be able to force users to focus on a specific point of the design and make them take specific actions, behave as you need.
  • Gestalt principles will help you design the product that will solve users’ problems most efficiently and attractively with the intuitiveness and user-friendliness applied.

There are 7 Core Gestalt principles that are important to designers:

1. Similarity

Similarity principle states that we tend to group all the elements that look similar or the same to our eyes. People often perceive them as a ground and think they have the same functionalities.

Similarity can be based on various visual parameters such as color, shape, size, and orientation.


Similarity principle

2. Proximity

Proximity principle states that things that are nearer to each other appear to be more related than things that are distanced from each other.

We can use the Proximity principle in UI design for grouping similar information, organizing content and decluttering layouts.


Proximity Principle

3. Common Region

Common Region principle is highly related to principle of proximity. It states that objects located within the same closed region are perceived by human brain as a group.

The Common Region principle is very useful. Not only it can help with information grouping and content organization but also achieve content separation or act as a focal point.


Common Region Principle

4. Closure

The Closure Principle of closure states that when we look at a complex arrangement of visual elements, we tend to look for a single, recognizable pattern that should be shaped out of the smaller ones.

It occurs when an object is incomplete, or parts of it are not enclosed.


Closure Principle

5. Continuity

The principle of continuity states that elements that are arranged on a line or curve are perceived to be more related than elements not on the line or curve.

Continuity gives us direction and movement through a composition. It happens when aligning elements and it can help we read or scan smoothly through the ui of the page, assisting with legibility.


Continuation Principle

6. Focal Point

The Focal Point principle states that whatever stands out visually will make us note it much faster and pay more attention to it. This applying to the CTA buttons and elements landing page design.


The Focal Point principle

7. Symmetry

Symmetrical Principle states that elements tend to perceived as belonging together regardless of their distance, giving us a feeling of solidity and order.

UI Elements that are symmetrical to each other helps to scan the content and recognize patterns. Symmetry allows users to focus on what is essential.


Symmetry Principle

Cover Image Illustrated by


🙏 Thanks for reading!



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