Von Restorff Effect

Also known as "The Isolation Effect", the Von Restorff Effect states that users are more likely to remember an object if it is visually different from similar objects.

A single yellow pepper surrounded by red peppers.


If you want a user to remember something, make it stand out. The most common use of this law in UI design can be found when designing interactable components such as buttons and text links. Often all components that can be interacted with will have a similarity, such as a stand out colour, to indicate to the user that this colour means an interaction can happen.

The Netflix homepage

On the Netflix homepage, there are only 3 clickable elements on the screen; the Netflix logo, the sign in button, and the search feature. Each of these stands out with a consistent use of the colour red to indicate an action can be taken to the user.

Key points

If you want information to be easily noticed, make it visually different.

Use the Von Restorff Effect sparingly in order to have the most powerful effect.

If you try to make too many elements on your screens stand out, it will lessen the impact

Other UX Laws

Miller's Law

Miller's Law states that the average person can only keep 7 (plus or minus 2) items of information in their working memory at a time.

Miller's Law

Seven different cans of fizzy drink.

Aesthetic-Usability Effect

The Aesthetic-Usability Effect states that users often perceive visually-pleasing products as being easier to use.

Aesthetic-Usability Effect

iPad being held above a desk.

Pareto Principle

The Pareto Principle (or the 80/20 rule) states that ~80% of effects come from ~20% of the causes.

Pareto Principle

Crops on farm land with mountains in the background.