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Different ways to design apps in React

Every front-end developer knows about the normal ways to design a web application. Connect external stylesheet with an HTML file, apply classes and that’s it. However, many front-end developers don’t know that there are many other ways to customize the appearance of a web application built in React.

Design web application via external stylesheet

This is the standard approach for styling web applications in CSS. Linking React components with CSS files is pretty similar to how we do it in HTML. First we create a CSS stylesheet, write required CSS rules, and use the import statement to make it available in the React component.

Linking CSS files with React components is good if you’re already familiar with the process of writing CSS rules for styling web applications. Most web developers have been using this syntax for years.

Using inline styles

Many React developers will advise against using inline styles, but there are certain use cases where they are useful. For example, if you are building a prototype of a web application, or just a small application.

In React, inline styles are written as JavaScript objects. And you probably know that React elements are written in JSX. You can set the style attribute of React elements to a JavaScript objects where keys represent CSS properties, and values represent CSS values. For example, something like this:

{backgroundColor: “red”}

As you can see, instead of writing CSS property as you would in a separate stylesheet (‘background-color’), we write it as backgroundColor – two words pushed together and camelCased. Also, the value of this property needs to be a string or other valid JavaScript value. You can also use string interpolation to dynamically style element in React. Here's a guide that explains how that works:

One final detail is that in order to evaluate JavaScript objects as such inside JSX, you need to wrap JavaScript code with an additional pair of curly braces.

Conditional styling

A great thing about React web applications is that you can dynamically customize the appearance of each element. For example, if a user enters wrong value into the email field, change the color of input element to red and highlight the error.

In React, you can use expressions like ternary operators to set up a condition and dynamically return one class value or another. This is the best approach for setting an inline expression that generates a dynamic class value. The process is better described in this tutorial on setting conditional className values in React.
Alternatively, you can create a condition outside of JSX. This is better, because you can’t use statements like if, case or a for loop within JSX. You can set a much more complex condition outside of it.

External libraries

React community has created various libraries for handling common styling tasks in React. For instance, the classnames package provides a function of the same name, used for dynamically applying class values.
There is also a popular styled-components package, which can help you create local CSS rules for components. It is commonly used in development of large scale web applications. You will often find that the knowledge of this package is necessary to get a job.

Top comments (8)

tomdanny profile image
Tom Danny

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alexanderjohnes34 profile image

Great overview of different styling methods in React! Linking external stylesheets is indeed a common approach, especially for developers familiar with traditional CSS workflows. It's great to explore alternative methods to customize the appearance of React applications. Looking forward to ob whatsapp android more insights on advanced styling techniques.

jamesjalasko3434 profile image
james jalsko

Designing apps in React involves structuring and organizing components, managing state and props, handling user interactions, and ensuring a smooth user experience. There are several approaches to designing apps in React, each with its own benefits and use cases. Here are some different ways to design apps in React to the calcul temps de travail

henry74 profile image

In React, apps can be designed using various approaches, such as functional components, class components, and hooks like useState and useEffect. Additionally, libraries like Redux can be used for managing state in larger applications. Design patterns like Container/Component and Presentational/Container patterns help organize code. CSS-in-JS solutions like styled components or CSS modules can style in components. Lastly, React Router enables navigation and routing in single-page applications.

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buttler88 profile image

In React, apps can be designed using various approaches. One common method is to use functional components, which allow developers to create UI elements and manage state using hooks such as useState and useEffect. Another approach is to use class components, which are suitable for more complex state management and lifecycle methods, although they are being phased out in favor of functional components. State management libraries like Redux or Context API can be used for managing global state and passing data down the component tree. Additionally, developers can use component libraries like Material-UI or Ant Design, which offer pre-designed UI components to accelerate development. Folding Chairs