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Custom shortcuts in Figma

Mac users are in for a treat

As of writing this, Figma doesn't have a built-in solution for assigning custom shortcuts. But it's still possible to assign shortcuts with other methods. The two (Mac-only) methods I've used are:

  1. macOS keyboard shortcuts
  2. BetterTouchTool

With the first method, you can assign a shortcut to a menu item within any app on macOS. I've used this method to assign shift + option + cmd + M to go to the main component of an instance.

macOS keyboard shortcuts for any application menu item
In macOS, you can assign shortcuts to a menu item within any application. Make sure to use the exact names for menu items and the syntax with an arrow.

However, this method doesn't work for actions that are not in the app's menu. For example, one shortcut I miss from Sketch is moving one level up in the layer tree. In Sketch, that shortcut was esc. In Figma, that's shift + enter, which is not convenient when you have one hand on the mouse and the other on the keyboard.

The second method, a third-party macOS app called BetterTouchTool, will help. With BetterTouchTool, I can assign a keyboard shortcut within Figma to perform a specific combination of keypresses.

An app called BetterTouchTool assigning a shortcut to Figma
Using BetterTouchTool to add a keyboard shortcut to Figma.

I've mapped cmd + esc to perform shift + enter to move one level up in the layer tree. I use cmd + esc instead of esc because Figma uses esc to exit text editing, and BetterTouchTool would try to run shift + enter instead. It took a while to rewire my brain to use cmd + esc, but now I'm comfortable.

I hope these shortcuts will help you to improve your productivity with Figma.

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