How to Design a Tasteful User Page

User profile page design is a way to express individuality on any wiki including wikiHow; however, inappropriate colour choices and the inclusion of too many elements that don't work well together can be jarring for an observer and cause the user profile page to look unprofessional.

Be aware of wikiHow policies about user talk pages. Talk pages are subject to a different policy than User profile pages. Talk pages are a central part of the user space on wikiHow and are a crucial element of our site. Many users wish to decorate their talk pages in a manner similar to user profile decoration or "page designing". There have been some cases of users employing particularly clashing colors, which can be difficult or straining for many wikiHowians' eyes. For this reason, the background and text colors on all talk pages may not be changed from the default, black text on a white background.

Designing your user profile space should be an exercise in creativity and personal expression but should also attempt to convey maturity and professionalism. This article will walk you through the process of ensuring a tasteful and mature user page.


  1. Image titled Design a Tasteful User Page Step 1
    Choose natural and muted colours for your design. Bright colours such as bright greens and yellows can cause eye fatigue for a viewer and give any design a childish appearance.

    Notice the difference between these two green objects and the effect it has on you:

    66FF00 - an unnatural green

    00CC66 - a more neutral green
  2. Image titled Design a Tasteful User Page Step 2
    Ensure good contrast between background and foreground colours. It can be difficult for viewers to read text if the colour of the background is close on the colour scale to that of the text. This is especially true for older visitors and visitors with visual impairment.

    FF00FF with FFFF33 - Text like this is very difficult to read

    66CCFF with 000000 - Black text on a muted background is much easier on the eyes.
  3. Image titled Design a Tasteful User Page Step 3
    Choose three to five colours that work well together and use them consistently throughout your user page. The fewer colours you use in your design the more consistent, mature, and professional your design will appear. Most website designs are done using no more than five colors.
  4. Image titled Design a Tasteful User Page Step 4
    Avoid over use of text formatting elements. The over use of bold, underline, strike-through, and similar text formatting elements makes it difficult for the viewer to locate items of importance. Text formatting is used to draw the eye to something and when everything is formatted it's difficult to focus and read the page as intended.
  5. Image titled Design a Tasteful User Page Step 5
    Avoid fancy fonts for large blocks of text. Although a fancy font can be a nice way to style a header or short block of important text it can be difficult to read large chunks of text in non-standard fonts. Also, don't depend on fonts present on your system to be present on anybody else's; they very often are not. Sans-serif fonts like Arial and Helvetica, and serif fonts like Times New Roman and Garamond are preferred for large blocks of writing.
  6. Image titled Design a Tasteful User Page Step 6
    Avoid floating elements and elements that move as the page scrolls. Elements that float above the page are difficult to incorporate in to your user space as your CSS must coexist with the existing and unchangeable CSS of the site. The result is often that site CSS will override your CSS when your floating element comes in contact with a site element causing unusual behaviour that looks bad.
  7. Image titled Design a Tasteful User Page Step 7
    Do not over use images where text will suffice. Images are a core component in any web design project but they should be used sparingly so as to give the images that are used the most effect. The more images crammed in to a page the less attention a viewer will pay to each, it is therefore better to use a few great images than a lot of mediocre images.
  8. Image titled Design a Tasteful User Page Step 8
    Limit your page contents to two full lengths of your screen. The more scrolling a viewer has to do the less likely they are to make it to the bottom of your page which will render any work done on the lower portion of your page wasted. Focus on quality over quantity on your user page.
  9. Image titled Design a Tasteful User Page Step 9
    Avoid over use of punctuation such as exclamation points and textisms like TTY, LOL, and OMG. Abbreviations and dozens of punctuation marks makes text look amateurish and will likely cause viewers to see you as immature. Write your user page as if your English teacher was going to review it when you're done.
  10. Image titled Design a Tasteful User Page Step 10
    Use small solid borders in place of large borders or dashed borders. Large borders give the appearance of an amateur designer and take up valuable space from actual content.

    Something simple and tasteful is a nice way to add elegance to your page.

    The exact same colour scheme can all of a sudden lose its elegance just by changing the border.


  • Limit your creativity to your user profile page and leave your talk page plain to keep within wikiHow policies.
  • The World Wide Web Consortium has a guide on designing with accessibility for the visually impaired in mind at
  • Tools like Kuler by Adobe can help you choose a colour palate that is pleasing on the eyes.
  • Try not to use colors that are bright as a background, such as red, black, yellow or green.
  • Avoid using fonts like Comic Sans MS and Chalkboard; they look childish and don't make your userpage look professional by any means.

Article Info

Categories: User Pages