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    next-themes
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    0.2.1 • Public • Published

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    An abstraction for themes in your Next.js app.

    • Perfect dark mode in 2 lines of code
    • System setting with prefers-color-scheme
    • Themed browser UI with color-scheme
    • No flash on load (both SSR and SSG)
    • Sync theme across tabs and windows
    • Disable flashing when changing themes
    • Force pages to specific themes
    • Class or data attribute selector
    • useTheme hook

    Check out the Live Example to try it for yourself.

    Install

    $ npm install next-themes
    # or
    $ yarn add next-themes

    Use

    You'll need a Custom App to use next-themes. The simplest _app looks like this:

    // pages/_app.js
    
    function MyApp({ Component, pageProps }) {
      return <Component {...pageProps} />
    }
    
    export default MyApp

    Adding dark mode support takes 2 lines of code:

    import { ThemeProvider } from 'next-themes'
    
    function MyApp({ Component, pageProps }) {
      return (
        <ThemeProvider>
          <Component {...pageProps} />
        </ThemeProvider>
      )
    }
    
    export default MyApp

    That's it, your Next.js app fully supports dark mode, including System preference with prefers-color-scheme. The theme is also immediately synced between tabs. By default, next-themes modifies the data-theme attribute on the html element, which you can easily use to style your app:

    :root {
      /* Your default theme */
      --background: white;
      --foreground: black;
    }
    
    [data-theme='dark'] {
      --background: black;
      --foreground: white;
    }

    useTheme

    Your UI will need to know the current theme and be able to change it. The useTheme hook provides theme information:

    import { useTheme } from 'next-themes'
    
    const ThemeChanger = () => {
      const { theme, setTheme } = useTheme()
    
      return (
        <div>
          The current theme is: {theme}
          <button onClick={() => setTheme('light')}>Light Mode</button>
          <button onClick={() => setTheme('dark')}>Dark Mode</button>
        </div>
      )
    }

    Warning! The above code is hydration unsafe and will throw a hydration mismatch warning when rendering with SSG or SSR. This is because we cannot know the theme on the server, so it will always be undefined until mounted on the client.

    You should delay rendering any theme toggling UI until mounted on the client. See the example.

    API

    Let's dig into the details.

    ThemeProvider

    All your theme configuration is passed to ThemeProvider.

    • storageKey = 'theme': Key used to store theme setting in localStorage
    • defaultTheme = 'system': Default theme name (for v0.0.12 and lower the default was light). If enableSystem is false, the default theme is light
    • forcedTheme: Forced theme name for the current page (does not modify saved theme settings)
    • enableSystem = true: Whether to switch between dark and light based on prefers-color-scheme
    • enableColorScheme = true: Whether to indicate to browsers which color scheme is used (dark or light) for built-in UI like inputs and buttons
    • disableTransitionOnChange = false: Optionally disable all CSS transitions when switching themes (example)
    • themes = ['light', 'dark']: List of theme names
    • attribute = 'data-theme': HTML attribute modified based on the active theme
      • accepts class and data-* (meaning any data attribute, data-mode, data-color, etc.) (example)
    • value: Optional mapping of theme name to attribute value
      • value is an object where key is the theme name and value is the attribute value (example)
    • nonce: Optional nonce passed to the injected script tag, used to allow-list the next-themes script in your CSP

    useTheme

    useTheme takes no parameters, but returns:

    • theme: Active theme name
    • setTheme(name): Function to update the theme
    • forcedTheme: Forced page theme or falsy. If forcedTheme is set, you should disable any theme switching UI
    • resolvedTheme: If enableSystem is true and the active theme is "system", this returns whether the system preference resolved to "dark" or "light". Otherwise, identical to theme
    • systemTheme: If enableSystem is true, represents the System theme preference ("dark" or "light"), regardless what the active theme is
    • themes: The list of themes passed to ThemeProvider (with "system" appended, if enableSystem is true)

    Not too bad, right? Let's see how to use these properties with examples:

    Examples

    The Live Example shows next-themes in action, with dark, light, system themes and pages with forced themes.

    Use System preference by default

    For versions above v0.0.12, the defaultTheme is automatically set to "system", so to use System preference you can simply use:

    <ThemeProvider>

    Ignore System preference

    If you don't want a System theme, disable it via enableSystem:

    <ThemeProvider enableSystem={false}>

    Class instead of data attribute

    If your Next.js app uses a class to style the page based on the theme, change the attribute prop to class:

    <ThemeProvider attribute="class">

    Now, setting the theme to "dark" will set class="dark" on the html element.

    Force page to a theme

    Let's say your cool new marketing page is dark mode only. The page should always use the dark theme, and changing the theme should have no effect. To force a theme on your Next.js pages, simply set a variable on the page component:

    // pages/awesome-page.js
    
    const Page = () => { ... }
    Page.theme = 'dark'
    export default Page

    In your _app, read the variable and pass it to ThemeProvider:

    function MyApp({ Component, pageProps }) {
      return (
        <ThemeProvider forcedTheme={Component.theme || null}>
          <Component {...pageProps} />
        </ThemeProvider>
      )
    }

    Done! Your page is always dark theme (regardless of user preference), and calling setTheme from useTheme is now a no-op. However, you should make sure to disable any of your UI that would normally change the theme:

    const { forcedTheme } = useTheme()
    
    // Theme is forced, we shouldn't allow user to change the theme
    const disabled = !!forcedTheme

    Disable transitions on theme change

    I wrote about this technique here. We can forcefully disable all CSS transitions before the theme is changed, and re-enable them immediately afterwards. This ensures your UI with different transition durations won't feel inconsistent when changing the theme.

    To enable this behavior, pass the disableTransitionOnChange prop:

    <ThemeProvider disableTransitionOnChange>

    Differing DOM attribute and theme name

    The name of the active theme is used as both the localStorage value and the value of the DOM attribute. If the theme name is "pink", localStorage will contain theme=pink and the DOM will be data-theme="pink". You cannot modify the localStorage value, but you can modify the DOM value.

    If we want the DOM to instead render data-theme="my-pink-theme" when the theme is "pink", pass the value prop:

    <ThemeProvider value={{ pink: 'my-pink-theme' }}>

    Done! To be extra clear, this affects only the DOM. Here's how all the values will look:

    const { theme } = useTheme()
    // => "pink"
    
    localStorage.getItem('theme')
    // => "pink"
    
    document.documentElement.getAttribute('data-theme')
    // => "my-pink-theme"

    More than light and dark mode

    next-themes is designed to support any number of themes! Simply pass a list of themes:

    <ThemeProvider themes={['pink', 'red', 'blue']}>

    Note! When you pass themes, the default set of themes ("light" and "dark") are overridden. Make sure you include those if you still want your light and dark themes:

    <ThemeProvider themes={['pink', 'red', 'blue', 'light', 'dark']}>

    Without CSS variables

    This library does not rely on your theme styling using CSS variables. You can hard-code the values in your CSS, and everything will work as expected (without any flashing):

    html,
    body {
      color: #000;
      background: #fff;
    }
    
    [data-theme='dark'],
    [data-theme='dark'] body {
      color: #fff;
      background: #000;
    }

    With Styled Components and any CSS-in-JS

    Next Themes is completely CSS independent, it will work with any library. For example, with Styled Components you just need to createGlobalStyle in your custom App:

    // pages/_app.js
    import { createGlobalStyle } from 'styled-components'
    import { ThemeProvider } from 'next-themes'
    
    // Your themeing variables
    const GlobalStyle = createGlobalStyle`
      :root {
        --fg: #000;
        --bg: #fff;
      }
    
      [data-theme="dark"] {
        --fg: #fff;
        --bg: #000;
      }
    `
    
    function MyApp({ Component, pageProps }) {
      return (
        <>
          <GlobalStyle />
          <ThemeProvider>
            <Component {...pageProps} />
          </ThemeProvider>
        </>
      )
    }

    Avoid Hydration Mismatch

    Because we cannot know the theme on the server, many of the values returned from useTheme will be undefined until mounted on the client. This means if you try to render UI based on the current theme before mounting on the client, you will see a hydration mismatch error.

    The following code sample is unsafe:

    import { useTheme } from 'next-themes'
    
    // Do NOT use this! It will throw a hydration mismatch error.
    const ThemeSwitch = () => {
      const { theme, setTheme } = useTheme()
    
      return (
        <select value={theme} onChange={e => setTheme(e.target.value)}>
          <option value="system">System</option>
          <option value="dark">Dark</option>
          <option value="light">Light</option>
        </select>
      )
    }
    
    export default ThemeSwitch

    To fix this, make sure you only render UI that uses the current theme when the page is mounted on the client:

    import { useState, useEffect } from 'react'
    import { useTheme } from 'next-themes'
    
    const ThemeSwitch = () => {
      const [mounted, setMounted] = useState(false)
      const { theme, setTheme } = useTheme()
    
      // useEffect only runs on the client, so now we can safely show the UI
      useEffect(() => {
        setMounted(true)
      }, [])
    
      if (!mounted) {
        return null
      }
    
      return (
        <select value={theme} onChange={e => setTheme(e.target.value)}>
          <option value="system">System</option>
          <option value="dark">Dark</option>
          <option value="light">Light</option>
        </select>
      )
    }
    
    export default ThemeSwitch

    To avoid Layout Shift, consider rendering a skeleton/placeholder until mounted on the client side.

    Images

    Showing different images based on the current theme also suffers from the hydration mismatch problem. With next/image you can use an empty image until the theme is resolved:

    import Image from 'next/image'
    import { useTheme } from 'next-themes'
    
    function ThemedImage() {
      const { resolvedTheme } = useTheme()
      let src
    
      switch (resolvedTheme) {
        case 'light':
          src = '/light.png'
          break
        case 'dark':
          src = '/dark.png'
          break
        default:
          src = 'data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAIAAAAAAAP///yH5BAEAAAAALAAAAAABAAEAAAIBRAA7'
          break
      }
    
      return <Image src={src} width={400} height={400} />
    }
    
    export default ThemedImage

    CSS

    You can also use CSS to hide or show content based on the current theme. To avoid the hydration mismatch, you'll need to render both versions of the UI, with CSS hiding the unused version. For example:

    function ThemedImage() {
      return (
        <>
          {/* When the theme is dark, hide this div */}
          <div data-hide-on-theme="dark">
            <Image src="light.png" width={400} height={400} />
          </div>
    
          {/* When the theme is light, hide this div */}
          <div data-hide-on-theme="light">
            <Image src="dark.png" width={400} height={400} />
          </div>
        </>
      )
    }
    
    export default ThemedImage
    [data-theme='dark'] [data-hide-on-theme='dark'],
    [data-theme='light'] [data-hide-on-theme='light'] {
      display: none;
    }

    With Tailwind

    Visit the live example • View the example source code

    NOTE! Tailwind only supports dark mode in version >2.

    In your tailwind.config.js, set the dark mode property to class:

    // tailwind.config.js
    module.exports = {
      darkMode: 'class'
    }

    Set the attribute for your Theme Provider to class:

    // pages/_app.js
    <ThemeProvider attribute="class">

    If you're using the value prop to specify different attribute values, make sure your dark theme explicitly uses the "dark" value, as required by Tailwind.

    That's it! Now you can use dark-mode specific classes:

    <h1 className="text-black dark:text-white">

    Discussion

    The Flash

    ThemeProvider automatically injects a script into next/head to update the html element with the correct attributes before the rest of your page loads. This means the page will not flash under any circumstances, including forced themes, system theme, multiple themes, and incognito. No noflash.js required.

    FAQ


    Why is my page still flashing?

    In Next.js dev mode, the page may still flash. When you build your app in production mode, there will be no flashing.


    Why do I get server/client mismatch error?

    When using useTheme, you will use see a hydration mismatch error when rendering UI that relies on the current theme. This is because many of the values returned by useTheme are undefined on the server, since we can't read localStorage until mounting on the client. See the example for how to fix this error.


    Do I need to use CSS variables with this library?

    Nope. See the example.


    Can I set the class or data attribute on the body or another element?

    Nope. If you have a good reason for supporting this feature, please open an issue.


    Can I use this package with Gatsby or CRA?

    Nope.


    Is the injected script minified?

    Yes, using Terser.


    Why is resolvedTheme necessary?

    When supporting the System theme preference, you want to make sure that's reflected in your UI. This means your buttons, selects, dropdowns, or whatever you use to indicate the current theme should say "System" when the System theme preference is active.

    If we didn't distinguish between theme and resolvedTheme, the UI would show "Dark" or "Light", when it should really be "System".

    resolvedTheme is then useful for modifying behavior or styles at runtime:

    const { resolvedTheme } = useTheme()
    
    <div style={{ color: resolvedTheme === 'dark' ? white : black }}>

    If we didn't have resolvedTheme and only used theme, you'd lose information about the state of your UI (you would only know the theme is "system", and not what it resolved to).

    Keywords

    none

    Install

    npm i next-themes

    DownloadsWeekly Downloads

    58,755

    Version

    0.2.1

    License

    MIT

    Unpacked Size

    35.3 kB

    Total Files

    11

    Last publish

    Collaborators

    • paco