1.0.1 • Public • Published

Don't use this boring doc, read the interactive docs instead.


Generate and use Material Design 3 color themes with TailwindCSS.

  • Generate a color theme from one, two or three base colors.
  • Automatic dark mode, no need to use the dark: variant.
  • Easy and consistent interaction states (hover, press, focus, disabled) with interactive-bg-.
  • Extra colors will be harmonized to the primary color (except if specified).
  • Dynamic Color: update theme dynamically on the client with a single statement of JavaScript.

Installation & Usage

npm install --save-dev tailwind-material-colors


const { withMaterialColors } = require('tailwind-material-colors');

module.exports = withMaterialColors({
  // Here, your tailwind config.
  // (Do not specify theme.colors or theme.extend.colors as they will be overwritten).
}, {
  // Here, your base colors as HEX values
  // primary is required
  primary: '#ff0000',
  // secondary and/or tertiary are optional, if not set they will be derived from the primary color
  secondary: '#ffff00',
  tertiary: '#0000ff',
  // extra named colors may also be included
  green: '#00ff00'
  blue: '#0000ff'

The colors you supply will be transformed by M3. In the example configuration above, where the provided primary base color is pure red (#ff0000), the resulting primary colors are #c00100 and #ffb4a8 for light and dark mode respectively, which are different shades of red. This is an intentional effect of the M3 algorithm in the interest of good contrast ratios and pleasing aesthetics.

If you don't want a color to be harmonized to the primary color, pass { hex: "#xxxxxx", harmonize: false } as the value instead of the plain hex color.

What do I get?

1. A Tailwind color palette.

The colors can be used with any of Tailwind's usual utilities (such as bg-, text-, border-, fill-, stroke-, shadow-,...).

The generated colors are:

  • Primary: primary, on-primary, primary-container, on-primary-container.
  • Secondary: secondary, on-secondary, secondary-container, on-secondary-container.
  • Tertiary: tertiary, on-tertiary, tertiary-container, on-tertiary-container.
  • Error: error, on-error, error-container, on-error-container.
  • Background: background, on-background
  • Surface: surface, on-surface, surface-variant, on-surface-variant, inverse-surface, on-inverse-surface.
  • Outline: outline.
  • Some basic that do not depend on the theme: white, black, transparent and current.

1.1 The bg- utilties add default content color.

Setting the background color will also set the default text color to its on- counterpart.

For example, if you use bg-primary, that will automatically apply text-on-primary. If you need to overwrite the text color, you can do so as usual with text-.

Default content color will not be set when using opacity modifiers (such as bg-primary/50). You can specify text color or use bg-primary bg-opacity-50 instead.

2. Automatic dark mode.

All the generated colors will automatically switch to their dark mode shades based on your defined Dark Mode Strategy, be it CSS prefers-color-scheme or a custom class. There's no need to use the dark: variant.

3. Interaction states.

This plugin provides easy to use interaction states that follow the M3 guidelines.

For example, interactive-bg-primary will apply an 8% overlay of the on-primary color to the background when the component is hovered, and a 12% overlay when focused or pressed. It will also apply a disabled state.

The interaction colors are available if you need to apply them manually with -hover, -press, -focus, and -drag suffixes. Since drag states cannot be handled with CSS, if you implement dragging on a bg-primary element, you'd apply the bg-primary-drag class where needed.

Dynamic Color

You can update the generated theme at runtime, directly on client-side JavaScript, with the updateTheme function.


import { updateTheme } from "tailwind-material-colors/lib/updateTheme.esm";

const makeThemeRed = () => {
      // set a new primary color (and optionally any other colors in your theme)
      primary: "#ff0000",
      green: "#00ff00",
    "media" // your chosen tailwind dark mode strategy (usually 'media' or 'class')
  • It's recommended to set all colors when changing primary because the harmonize feature (on by default) will affect the resulting shades.
  • updateTheme can't create new colors, only update existing ones.

⚠️ The updateTheme function is around 100KB. If possible, load it asynchronously to reduce load times.


npm i tailwind-material-colors

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