Product Design Resources

I frequently get asked for product design resource recommendations. Sometimes from PMs and engineers looking to level up their design sensibilities. Other times from folks looking to become designers themselves. Whatever your reason, if you want to learn more about product design and jumpstart your design skills then this post is for you.

🔥 Make Your Designs Look Great

While product design is much more than how something looks, it's one of the most tangible ways to dive into product design. These are my favorite recs to improve your "eye for design" and polish the look and feel of whatever you're working on.

  1. ⭐️ Refactoring UI: Book · Tips · Article
  2. Practical UI
  3. 7 Rules for Creating Gorgeous UI: Part I · Part II
  4. How to Make Your Not-So-Great Visual Design Better

🤔 What Even Is Product Design?

Design is a complex topic with many different flavors. These resources will help you understand how product design fits into this landscape.

  1. ⭐️ What is Product Design?
  2. Intro to Product Design
  3. How To Explain Product Design to Anyone
  4. Principles of Product Design
  5. Figma's Internal Design 101 Presentation
  6. XKCD On the Difference Between UI & UX

✨ Get Inspired

As pointed out in this twitter thread, one of the best ways to develop your design eye is to explore examples of good design. The below sites will help you understand what good design looks like. Even if you can't design stuff like it (yet!), being able to recognize the difference between good and bad design is a great first step.

Mobile: Mobbin · mthds · UXArchive · pttrns · UI Sources

Patterns: Nicely Done · Screen Lane · UI Garage · Design Vault · Lookup Design · Collect UI

Case Studies: Growth Design · UserOnboard · Built for Mars · Under Glass · App Dissection

Landing Pages: Godly · Httpster · Landbook · Lapa · One Page Love · Minimal Gallery

Other: TailwindUI · Really Good Emails · Good Email Copy · Nishi · Dribbble · UI Jar · Sideway

Companies: Airbnb · Robinhood · Spotify · Squarespace · Asana · Lemonade · Cash App · Things · Superhuman · Linear · Shopify · Stripe · Help Scout · Intercom · Segment · Notion · Copilot · Clay · SeatGeek

🔤 Understanding the Basics

  1. NNGroup's Cheat Sheets: Visual Design Terms · Typography
  2. Invision's Design Terminology Glossary
  3. Product Design: Expectations vs Reality: Part I · Part II

🧠 Principles, Mental Models, and Biases

  1. ⭐️ Digital Product Design Principles
  2. Dieter Rams: 10 Principles for Good Design [1]
  3. Laws of UX
  4. UX Myths
  5. 10 Usability Heuristics for User Interface Design
  6. Taste
  7. A Collection of Design Principles
  8. Mental Models for Designers
  9. The Psychology of Design

🌱 Tutorials & Challenges

  1. ⭐️ Shift Nudge
  2. Daily UI Challenge
  3. Figma's Learn Design Pilot
  4. Free 7 Day Figma 101 Email Course

📚 Books

  1. ⭐️ Don't Make Me Think
  2. Designing Products People Love
  3. User Friendly
  4. Hooked
  5. The Design of Everyday Things
  6. Product Design

🎥 Audio & Video

  1. High Resolution Podcast
  2. Helvetica
  3. Ian Spalter: Digital Product Design (Part of Netflix's Abstract Series)

💼 Getting Buy In

  1. Why Invest in Design?

🔗 Further Reading

I'm not the first person who has put a list like this together. Here are similar guides you may find helpful:

  1. UX Design Resources & Recommendations
  2. The Guide to Design
  3. Degreeless Design

⭐️ Denotes my top picks

[1] I may or may not have a picture of these framed above my desk