React Native Styling: Simple Tips to Getting Started

React Native Styling: Simple Tips to Getting Started

Coming to React Native development from a React background, I encountered a bit of a learning curve related to native OS compilation and application styling. While troubleshooting compilation and build issues often still cause me to bang my head on the table, I have gotten a good handle on how to approach the styling process. Here are a couple of tips that can help get you started on a good path to creating an app that looks great across mobile platforms. 

Use a UI Toolkit Instead of Custom Styling

Styling in React Native can be tricky. React Native provides several common user interface controls such as buttons, pickers, and sliders, that work for both Android and iOS. These controls are platform-specific UI components exclusive to Native and the styling may appear different from one operating system to another. You can incorporate platform-dependent styling for these controls, but I have found that it can take a lot of work to style these controls consistently across different platforms.

As an alternative, I recommend using a UI toolkit, such as React Native Elements, wherever possible. Using a UI toolkit allows for faster development and more consistent cross-platform styling, which I have found greatly reduces the time you spend tweaking components to get them to look just right.

Read Up on Mobile UI Design and Layout

If you’re coming to mobile application development from a PC/Web application development background, take some time to review best practices for mobile UI design. What works well on a large screen doesn’t always translate well to small touchscreen platforms. There are plenty of great blogs written on best practices for mobile application design. Here’s a great, comprehensive blog on best practices for mobile form design.

These tips are pretty simple, but if you are finding it difficult to get your app styled nicely and quickly, they can make a world of difference. Good luck!

Learn more about DMC's mobile application development expertise


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