How to Make an Easy Dotted or Dashed Circle in Adobe Photoshop

by KATIE SHABI PUBLISHED 14 December 2014

Want to learn how to make a circle with a dashed or dotted border in Adobe Photoshop? Learn the best and fastest way to make circles with dotted and dashed strokes! (Hint: using this tip will make you a better designer, too!)

Dashed & Dotted Circle Borders & Strokes in Photoshop and Illustrator

Best Design Program for Making a Circle with a Dashed Border?

Adobe Photoshop is probably the best graphic design program out there because it makes a lot of basic design tasks simple and very easy to do. A lot of beginning designers will use Photoshop for pretty much all graphic design needs, but there's a reason why Adobe created and included other design programs in Creative Suite. To put it simply, Adobe Photoshop is not the best or easiest tool to use for every basic design task. While making a dotted circle is possible in Photoshop, making circles with different strokes and borders is really easy (and fast) to do in Adobe Illustrator.

Best Option: Make a Dotted Circle in Illustrator & Export to Photoshop

If you want to make a dashed or dotted stroke on a circle or ellipse in Photoshop, the best way to do it is to make it in Illustrator and export it to Photoshop to use as a smart object or easily rasterized layer. Not only is that the easiest and fastest way, drawing dashed circles in Illustrator and exporting them to Photoshop also offers you way more flexibility and stroke options and choices and will ultimately look more polished, making you a more professional designer, too. Here's how to draw circles with a dashed border in Illustrator.

How to Make Dotted and Dashed Circles in Illustrator

How to Make a Dotted Circle in Adobe Illustrator

Open Adobe Illustrator and create a new document.


Select the Ellipse shape from your Tools window. (Press the L key to select ellipse if it is not already selected.)


Draw your ellipse with your preferred size.


Go to Window and click on Stroke to open your Stroke options window.


Click on the Dashed Line checkbox in the Stroke window. Your circle should now have a dashed border!


To make a dotted circle, set the Stroke Cap to Rounded (middle option). Set your Dash point to 0 and your Gap point to 12pt.

Dotted and Dashed Circles in Photoshop

See how easy it was to change the stroke of your circle in Illustrator! Using Illustrator and Photoshop together will bring your designs to the next level. Dashed and polka dot borders are just a couple of your options in Illustrator, so experiment with different settings and combinations to design more unique styles.

To use the dashed or dotted circle you just made in Photoshop, just drag the circle from Illustrator to your open Photoshop document. If necessary, make sure that the fill of your circle is set to transparent before placing it easily into your Photoshop design.

How to Crop an Image into a Circle in Photoshop

How to Crop an Image into a Circle in Photoshop

Need to crop an image so it's round in Photoshop? Learn the best way how to crop an image to fit into a circle in Photoshop!

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