Easy to understand React Hook recipes by Gabe Ragland
What's all this about?

Hooks are a new addition in React that lets you use state and other React features without writing a class. This website provides easy to understand code examples to help you learn how hooks work and inspire you to take advantage of them in your next project. You may also like my React app builder ✨️

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This hook makes it easy to dynamically change the appearance of your app using CSS variables. You simply pass in an object containing key/value pairs of the CSS variables you'd like to update and the hook updates each variable in the document's root element. This is useful in situations where you can't define styles inline (no pseudo class support) and there are too many style permutations to include each theme in your stylesheet (such as a web app that lets users customize the look of their profile). It's worth noting that many css-in-js libraries support dynamic styles out of the box, but it's interesting to experiment with how this can be done with just CSS variables and a React Hook. The example below is intentionally very simple, but you could imagine the theme object being stored in state or fetched from an API. Be sure to check out the CodeSandbox demo for a more interesting example and to see the accompanying stylesheet.

import { useLayoutEffect } from 'react';
import './styles.scss'; // ->

// Usage
const theme = {
  'button-padding': '16px',
  'button-font-size': '14px',
  'button-border-radius': '4px',
  'button-border': 'none',
  'button-color': '#FFF',
  'button-background': '#6772e5',
  'button-hover-border': 'none',
  'button-hover-color': '#FFF'

function App() {

  return (
      <button className="button">Button</button>

// Hook
function useTheme(theme) {
    () => {
      // Iterate through each value in theme object
      for (const key in theme) {
        // Update css variables in document's root element`--${key}`, theme[key]);
    [theme] // Only call again if theme object reference changes
  • CSS Variables and React - The blog post by Dan Bahrami that inspired this recipe.
  • Divjoy - The easiest way to start your next React project. Pick everything you need, like auth, analytics, payments, and more + a nice looking template and then export a complete React codebase. It saves you weeks of development time.
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