Night Mode with Mix Blend Mode: Difference

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Dark mode designs are all the rage right now but here’s an interesting take: Wei Gao has built a night mode on her own site that uses mix-blend-mode: difference to create an effect that looks like this:

Wei explains how she implemented this technique and the edge cases she encountered along the way. I especially love what she had to say about mix-blend-mode functions here:

I remember first playing around with them in Photoshop years ago. Now that browsers are becoming more powerful and we are seeing complex graphical features native to browser rendering. This doesn’t mean we should implement a full photoshop in browsers and nor should we limit our imaginations to just that. Browsers and web pages have their own contexts and goals, as well as a different set of limits. Maybe we should welcome them like new habitants and discover use cases native to this territory.

Indeed! Although Wei’s technique is pretty unique and awesome on its own, this all ties back into the thing that kicked off the whole trend: the prefers-color-scheme media feature that was released in Safari as part of the MacOS 10.4 release that gave us a dark mode preference setting. This is a developing space, so we’re certain to see more innovations and approaches ahead.

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