If you’re looking to make a visual impact in your web projects, 3D text effects are a surefire way to do so. They can turn an ordinary website headline into a can’t-miss work of art.
Today, we’ll take a look at some snippets that feature beautiful 3D text effects. They run the gamut from calm-and-classy to outrageously-animated. There’s something here for just about every need.
Letters on a Shelf
Here’s a fun example that shows off the power of the Three.js library. 3D text appears on a series of shelves – but there’s more than meets the eye. Click or touch a letter and it goes tumbling to its imminent doom.
See the Pen Interactive 3D-Letters using Three.js & Cannon.js by Angela Galliat
Dot Matrix Signage
This text snippet simulates the look of a dot matrix sign, and even lets you input your own custom text. As the sign rotates horizontally, note the subtle changes in hue. It nicely mimics the type of shading effect you’d see in the real world. Moving your cursor up and down also tilts the viewing angle.
See the Pen Pseudo 3D text by JK
Comic Book Heroes
The use of a cartoonish font and CSS animation make this example stand out. Rather, each word “jumps” at you in staggered intervals. Text outlines and shadowing help to bring out that third dimension.
See the Pen CSS 3D Text Effect by Kyle Wetton
Amazingly, this 3D wave effect is done with pure CSS (and just over 50 lines, to boot). A unique layered look is combined with a blend mode to add a touch of mysticism. The gentle animation means that you can call attention to text without overwhelming users.
See the Pen Only CSS: Text Wave by Yusuke Nakaya
In the Shadows
Perhaps it sounds simplistic, but CSS shadows offer an effective way to add a 3D effect. Here we have a demonstration of two different ways to achieve three dimensions. Using the CSS filter property allows some of the page background to come through, while text-shadow provides a more traditional look.
See the Pen 3D effect with shadows by zastrow
We admit that this particular effect may not be appropriate for most projects. But it’s still great fun. The retro video game vibe and pulsating text go together like PAC-MAN and dots. It may even make you want to pull that old Commodore 64 out of storage.
See the Pen ’80s Inspired Pure CSS graphics by CurleyWebDev
3D doesn’t have to mean undignified. Take this stroked text for example. It offers plenty of multi-dimensional impact but is designed to blend in. This minimal effect could be great for article headlines or page titles.
See the Pen YPZJQz by @TimLamber
Set In Stone
See the Pen CSS only 3D engraved stone by Michael Burridge
Whether you’re looking to add movement and interactivity or subtle decoration, 3D text effects can help. They call attention to important content and allow you to break out of the mundane.
What’s more, you don’t necessarily have to write a massive amount of code to create something unique. Some of the examples above were built with a relatively small bit of CSS. You can start small and work your way up to something grander if need be.
Looking for more 3D text snippets? Take a look at our CodePen collection for inspiration.