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Light or dark color theme?

What is better to use a light or dark color theme? Mainly all developers say dark is better. But is it better?

A couple of years back I saw a tweet from Brent ( In this article, he shares which color scheme he thinks is better to use. In this article, I won’t share the scientific aspects of the pros and cons of using a small or dark color scheme. You can read that in Brent’s article. At the end, I will also some more articles that will go through this topic.

Before I was reading, the article, I was a little skeptical. I wondered what the difference between a light and dark color scheme is. Dark looks way nicer. Everywhere you saw that developers use a dark color scheme. So why should I use a light one?

After reading the article I thought let’s try it out for a week and see what the results are. After a week is was surprised with how relaxed my eyes are. So I decided to use the light color scheme. This is from now so four years back. In the meanwhile a couple of times I’ve switched back to dark theme because I saw the nice setups from others and thought I like that one I want that also. But after a couple of days, I switched back to a light theme because my eyes were tired at the end of the days with a dark color scheme.

At this moment I use it for my IDE JetBrains IntelliJ Idea Ultimate. The theme that I use is Light with Light Header. With the Light color scheme. But this is in sync with my OS, so when it’s in the evening my IDE will be turned into a dark color scheme, and when it becomes lighter it will change to a light color scheme.

Besides this I also use Flux. With this tool, I will adjust the screen color. In the evening it will make the screen warmer. I recommend this tool to everyone. In the beginning, it looks weird, and feels weird to watch it. But after 2 a 3 days you get used to it.

If you use a second monitor with a Mac you can’t change the brightness of your screen with the Mac controls. To change the brightness of your second screen there is a handy tool for it MonitorControl.

I want to challenge you to use these tools and a light color scheme for at least a week and see how you experience it. If it’s not for you can get back to your old setup. But maybe it works for you and makes your eyes less lazy and more relaxed.

Here are some articles about dark color schemes/ dark themes: