Glowy button material

I was hoping to get some advice on making glowy buttons similar to those in the picture below. I don’t really have a great idea of how to do this, so I figured make I could create a high poly version of my button, throw a really rough glass shader on it, put a bright light in there, and somehow bake all of that information onto my emission texture? The quick five minute test sort of worked, but wasn’t great.

Should I not even bother with baking something like this, and just make the texture the hard way in Photoshop? Is there another approach I might want to take?


First quick baking test didn’t go particularly well. Combined Bake with only Transmission checked. There are weird shadows or something and I don’t know how they got there.

EDIT: Yeah I was way over thinking this. Three minutes in Photoshop came up with something way better. Just a little blurred black over the edges.

Hi Rekov, can you please share the nodes you used to achieve the result for the red button?


might look better in EEVEE using some bloom effect

happy cl

Should be a mix between diffuse and translucency, then mixed with refraction, then fresnel mixed with glossy, if you want to capture the lighting effects from a lightsource within.

Hi forum, thanks for your replies, I’m a novice Blender user, can you guys share some screen shots with the Nodes to make this Button Bloom effect?

Thank you.

You’ll have to tweak the factors to your liking, but this is the approach I would go for using real point lightsources (MIS deactivated) within the geometry. This is a 40x20x10mm box with a 1mm solidify and bevel modifier on it.

The idea is to first mix the absorption components (diffuse and translucency), then mix in the transmissive components (refraction and transparent), then fake fresnel mix in the glossy, and finally handle the shadow if needed. Using real fresnel you would have to invert the IOR for backfaces, which requires a bit more know how on when and how to use.
Note that using geometry/incoming takes away any refractive properties of the refraction shader (doesn’t bend light), but allows use of refraction roughness.

HI Carl, thanks for replying question.

Great result for the button, crazy nodes and noddles going on there. Can you please upload the node file?

Thank you.

Nope. I prefer to “teach a man how to fish” :slight_smile: If you set it up manually, you might learn the thinking process of setting it up, and do it by memory after a couple of times. Sure, this is for thin walled stuff and doesn’t cover rough fresnel or microroughness, but it should still be easy to work your way from this to that. Anyhow, it’s only about 18 nodes, not very complex stuff at all, even if those 18 coverns shading process only they do cover most surface based thin walled cases. Don’t think I saved it even.

Actually yes, that is a good learning curve, your’re absolutely correct.


So 18 nodes is nothing. Although it does a lot more than pure shading, this and this shows things can get easily out of hand wrt complexity. Sometimes I attack a problem in a far too complex way, something Secrop showed in the latter how easily it could actually be :smiley: