I often find myself stroked shapes for buttons etc (kind of like the "Ask Question" button on this site actually). I follow the approach of creating a white shape with a stroke effect, and then selecting the multiply blend mode. Leaving only the stroke visible. This is a useful technique as i can resize the shape.

So this is fine for the design stage but when it comes to exporting these elements as png's and using them in a website or in after effects, the multiply effect obviously won't be carried over and i'm having to reconstruct these elements in Illustrator. I do this often enough that it's getting a bit annoying.

Is there a different method that will allow me to create these type of elements fully within Photoshop that i can export as fully functional pngs? Without using Stroke Shape, as i can't resize these layers.

Here are some screenshots of the process:

  • Make white shape Make white shape

  • Add stroke Add stroke

  • Multiply shape layer Multiply shape layer

  • Desired final effect Final product

  • Multiply problems No alpha

2 Answers 2


Don't change the layer's blending mode. After you apply the stroke go to your Layer Panel and where it says Fill: 100% lower that to 0. It's directly below Opacity

  • 1
    I've always wondered what that option did! So obvious now. Can't believe i never looked into this. Thanks Ryan. Oct 2, 2014 at 12:16
  • THIS is the right answer! Works for any type of shape (inkl. vector and mask based). Great, thanks!
    – Jpsy
    Jul 7, 2015 at 16:08

enter image description here

I'd recommend going to the Rounced rectangle options and setting:

  • Fill to none
  • Stroke and Stroke width to what ever color / width you want.

You'll need to have one of the shape tools selected to see these options.

Alternatively... These can also be found in the Window > Properties

enter image description here

Shape Stroke was introduced in Photoshop CS6.

  • Wow, i've been overlooking that option for quite some time i guess! Thanks @Joonas Oct 2, 2014 at 12:13

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