Photoshop Rounded Rectangle: A Step-by-Step Guide to Creating One

Creating a rounded rectangle in Photoshop is a simple process. First, select the Rectangle Tool from the toolbar. Next, click and drag on your canvas to draw a rectangle. Then, in the options bar, adjust the ‘Radius’ value to round the corners to your preference. And just like that, you have a rounded rectangle!

After you complete the action of creating a rounded rectangle, you can customize it further. You can fill it with color, add a stroke, apply effects, or use it as a mask for other images. The possibilities are endless!


Ah, the rounded rectangle – it’s like the friendlier cousin of the harsh, angular rectangle. In the world of design, rounded rectangles are all the rage, adding a touch of softness and modernity to everything from app icons to buttons on your website. But how do you create one in Photoshop, the go-to software for graphic design? Well, that’s what we’re here to talk about.

Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a Photoshop newbie, knowing how to whip up a rounded rectangle is a skill you’ll want in your toolkit. It’s relevant to anyone dabbling in digital design – web designers, graphic artists, UI/UX designers, and hobbyists. Creating rounded rectangles can help you stay on top of design trends and make your work look more professional. Plus, it’s a building block for more complex shapes and effects. So, let’s dive in and get those corners looking smooth and inviting!

Photoshop Rounded Rectangle Tutorial

Before we jump into the steps, let’s talk about what we’re going to achieve. By the end of this tutorial, you’ll know how to create a rounded rectangle that can be used as a design element in your projects. It’s a versatile shape that can be customized and styled to fit your needs.

Step 1: Select the Rectangle Tool

Select the Rectangle Tool from the toolbar on the left-hand side of the screen.

Once you’ve selected the Rectangle Tool, you’ll notice that your cursor changes to a crosshair, indicating that you’re ready to draw your shape. If you can’t find the Rectangle Tool, it might be nested under the Ellipse Tool or another shape tool. Click and hold the tool icon to reveal the other options.

Step 2: Draw the Rectangle

Click and drag on your canvas to draw a rectangle.

As you drag, you’ll see a live preview of the rectangle’s shape. Don’t worry about getting the dimensions perfect; you can always adjust the size later. If you want a perfect square, hold down the Shift key while dragging.

Step 3: Adjust the Radius

In the options bar at the top, adjust the ‘Radius’ value to round the corners of your rectangle.

The ‘Radius’ value determines how rounded the corners will be. A higher value results in more rounded corners. If you wish to have different radii for each corner, you can unlink the chain icon and enter different values for each corner.


Aesthetic AppealRounded rectangles are visually pleasing and can make designs feel more friendly and approachable.
VersatilityThey can be used in a variety of design projects, from web UIs to logos and print materials.
Modern LookRounded corners are a staple in contemporary design, helping your work look up-to-date.

The aesthetic appeal of rounded rectangles cannot be overstated. They soften the harshness of straight edges and can make interfaces appear more organic. This can lead to better user experiences, as the shapes are easier on the eyes and suggest a more user-friendly product.

Versatility is another major pro. Rounded rectangles can fit into a multitude of design aesthetics, from minimalist to playful. They’re used in icons, buttons, and even as frames for images or videos, making them a shape you’ll use time and time again.

Lastly, rounded rectangles contribute to a modern look. They’re a design trend that has been popular for years and doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. Using them can help ensure your design doesn’t look dated.


OveruseRounded rectangles can become overused and may not stand out in a sea of similar designs.
Limited ExpressionThey might not be suitable for projects that require more complex or expressive shapes.
TrendinessRelying too much on trends can make your work look generic if not executed well.

While rounded rectangles are popular, their overuse can make your design blend in instead of standing out. It’s important to consider whether this shape is the best fit for your project or if it’s being used out of habit.

In terms of expression, rounded rectangles are somewhat limited. If you’re looking to convey a more unique or abstract concept, you might need to look beyond the rounded rectangle to more complex shapes.

Lastly, trendiness can be a double-edged sword. It’s great to have a modern look, but design trends come and go. Relying too heavily on trends can backfire if the trend fades, leaving your design looking outdated.

Additional Information

While the steps to create a Photoshop rounded rectangle are straightforward, there’s always room to add more flair to your design. For instance, once you have your rounded rectangle, you can experiment with layer styles to add shadows, glows, or textures. Don’t be afraid to play around with blending modes too; they can give your rectangle a unique look by affecting how it interacts with the layers beneath it.

Another tip is to use the rounded rectangle as a clipping mask. This neat trick allows you to place an image or a complex pattern inside your shape, giving you endless possibilities for creativity. Just make sure that the layer you want to clip is above the rounded rectangle layer, then right-click on it and select ‘Create Clipping Mask’.

Remember to think about the context in which you’re using your rounded rectangle. It should complement the other elements in your design and adhere to the overall style you’re aiming for. Consistency is key!


  1. Select the Rectangle Tool
  2. Draw the rectangle on the canvas
  3. Adjust the ‘Radius’ value for rounded corners

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I create a rounded rectangle with different corner radii?

Yes, you can set different corner radii by unlinking the chain icon in the options bar and entering different values for each corner.

How do I change the color of my rounded rectangle?

Double-click on the ‘Color’ thumbnail in the options bar or the ‘Layer’ panel to open the color picker, where you can select a new color.

Can I make rounded rectangles with a border?

Absolutely! Just adjust the ‘Stroke’ settings in the options bar to add and customize a border around your rounded rectangle.

Is it possible to resize the rounded rectangle after it’s been created?

Yes, you can use the Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd + T) to resize your rectangle. Hold down the Shift key to maintain the aspect ratio as you resize.

How do I make a rounded rectangle transparent?

Lower the ‘Fill’ percentage in the options bar or the ‘Layer’ panel to make your rounded rectangle more transparent.


Rounded rectangles are more than just a design fad; they’re a fundamental element that can elevate your Photoshop projects from good to great. Whether you’re designing a mobile app interface or creating graphics for a social media post, mastering the rounded rectangle is a must.

Remember to play with the radius values to get the perfect curve, and don’t be afraid to experiment with colors, textures, and effects to make your rectangle unique. Keep practicing, and before you know it, the rounded rectangle will be a go-to shape in your design arsenal. Happy designing!

Get Our Free Newsletter

How-to guides and tech deals

You may opt out at any time.
Read our Privacy Policy