In design, the use of full stops in headers is almost always intentional. The way they are used can either enhance or mar the UX of your application or product, making them a powerful element in your design. They have as much significance as other design elements like drop shadows, rounded edges and gradients, and thus should not be underestimated.
So, how best to use them in design? And, when is it not a blunder?
- With strong, short phrases and statements: See how Apple intentionally used full stops on headers in their landing page for the iPhone X.
Imagine these phrases without the full stops. It may not hurt, but you’ll notice the difference.
- For clarity, precision and emphasis: Compare these two screenshots from Etch’s site.
Notice the difference? Believe me, it’s not only the bold text that does the job.
- Sometimes, to separate words distinctively: Again, for emphasis, you may use full stops instead of commas to separate words distinctively. See how InVision (my favorite app, of course) used it.
In InVision’s case, each of the words (or phrase) meant something powerful, hence, the separation using full stops.
- Other times, it’s just brand guidelines: Some brands insist on using full stops with their headers or copies, as part of their design guidelines regardless of whether it’s just a word, phrase or sentence. You may take a cue from there.
In conclusion, full stops are not just dots. They have meaning, they have purpose, and they are powerful, enough to help in delivering messages in small bits, deliberately.
Use full stops wisely.