The case is that the form contains select which is optional and if user selects one option from select but wants to undo that, should list contain blank option or "none" option or how this should be handled?

Screenshot from design

2 Answers 2


This is a good question that makes ink flow.

As it always depend on the context of your form, I would answer with some advices and reading, like:

  • Avoid a reset button on the form, even if you didn't mention this, just as reminder
  • You can make this specific entry resettable,
  • You can offer a default choice that will be always available for the user.

For instance, if your question is:

What's your one and only favourite color?

Options would be:

  • I don't have one
  • Red
  • Blue
  • Etc.

The first one would be the one by default. Of course you need to work on a neutral default answer depending on the question you ask.

Reading suggestion:https://www.nngroup.com/articles/reset-and-cancel-buttons/ Avoid placeholders in any case.

By the way, it's the same issue with radio buttons: when the answer is optional, you should always prepare a default neutral option selected by default.

I hope this small answer helps you.

Have a great day!

  • Thanks for the answer. Adding option similar than "I don't have one" is the I've been thinking. Did you mean setting that "I don't have one" option default selection? If yes is it good practice to make decision on behalf of the user?
    – Robert
    Commented Jan 20, 2021 at 5:38
  • 1
    Unfortunately I can't answer because it depends on the context. It's either the default value (like an actual "selected" neutral option) or an empty value when the user load this form for the first time. Best thing is to take a decision and test that with actual users. (user testing) Commented Jan 20, 2021 at 13:03
  • Good answer! That's true. In my I case I think I would let default be empty. If user don't want answer anything to optional field he can do it. Then I also keep forms fields consistent because all fields are empty.
    – Robert
    Commented Jan 21, 2021 at 11:16
  • Perfect Robert :) Have a great day and week-end :) Commented Jan 22, 2021 at 13:27

Personally I have always seen very confusing:

  • The empty option
  • The action as title

Following an order of priorities it should be:

  1. Title: the name of the option group to choose from
  2. First option: the action to do
  3. Options

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  • Thanks for answer! Default texts is one thing that I've been thinking lately. I've come to conclusion that it might be better to leave fields empty. User scans form and keep tracking empty fields. Default text might look like already filled. You can read more: uxdesign.cc/…
    – Robert
    Commented Jan 20, 2021 at 5:03

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