Chrome effect in Photoshop

There are plenty of ways to get metallic effects in Photoshop and there are styles supplied by default. I don’t use them – here’s my preferred chrome/gold effect technique:

1. Create a new file and fill with black.

2. Add a white graphic/text layer.

3. Cmd + click the item in point 3 to make a selection from it and go to the Channels palette.

4. Create a new channel with your selection still loaded and fill it with white.

New Alpha Channel

New Alpha Channel

5. With the selection still active, go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur and choose 6 px.

6. Repeat with 3px, then 1.5px to get the image above.

7. Go back to the Layers palette and add a new layer filled with 50% gray.

8. Go to Filter > Render > Lighting Effects and choose the settings shown here:

Lighting Effects settings

Lighting Effects settings

9. Back on the Layers palette, reload your selection and invert the selection to trim away the gray.

10. Add a Curves adjustment with the settings shown below and a solid colour layer (if you want) with it’s blend mode set to colour.

Curves settings

Curves settings

The finished effect.

The finished effect

The finished effect

I turned the background canvas white again for this example. You can add a nice drop shadow to finish off the effect and maybe even a little noise for textural-realism.

other page


  1. Marc

    Can you help me figure out how to do this on non-text items?

    I used the “Line Tool” to create a custom logo… and want it chromed out. Yet all the instructions I find on the web are for working with text which doesnt seem to apply to non-text items.

    Ideas or pointers would be greatly appreciated.


  2. Designermagic


    To do this on non-text items, merge (Cmd + Alt + Shift + E) the logo or content you want chromed to a new layer. Next I would Cmd + Click the layers you used to make a selection on your new layer,using the Shift key to add to the selection. Next, invert the selection and delete so you have a transparent area around your logo.

    Use this to create your alpha channel.

  3. Kelly Hubbard

    Thanks a lot. Loved the article.
    Could you please tell me whether ublock origin is better than Ad Block Plus or is it roughly the same?1

It's good to talk!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *