20+ Uniquely Cool jQuery Plugins and Tutorials

jQuery is a fantastic resource with a powerful base of plugins, but we often see roundup’s of the same boring plugins that all do the same thing. Here are 22 plugins that don’t simply do the same thing, but do things differently, and are exciting rather than boring. We hope that these plugins will be handy in your next project.

1. Airport Text Effect

Demo | Link

You know those flickering messages you see on boards at airports and train stations? That effect is now at your fingertips with this plugin.

2. Sliding Image Puzzle

Demo | Link

Remember those sliding image puzzles you played when you were little? Well now you can make your own in your browser with this clever little plugin.

3. Quickflip

Demo | Link

With this plugin, you can mimic the effect of cooly flipping over an element such as an image, or lets say for example, a business card.

4. Spritley

Demo | Link

A fantastic plugin to create a truly inspiring sliding header, giving the illusion of flash, without flash itself!

5. JQZoom

Demo | Link

Slightly less unique, but still just as cool, this plugin allows you to have preview zoom in fields on an image, just like we’ve seen some major retailers using.

6. Quicksand

Demo | Link

Re-order and sort your list items with beautiful transitions with this plugin.  Super sleek, and super fast.

7. Spacegallery

Demo | Link

This image gallery offers up the feeling of flicking through items in a filing cabinet. You view images one by one, and see the ones behind stacking up.

8. jQuery Heat Map

Demo | Link

There are plenty tools for creating heat-maps of your site, but say you want to do it yourself? This will do the trick nicely with it clean simple interface.

9. On-screen Keyboard

Demo | Link

We’ve seen on-screen keyboards before, but this thorough tutorial shows you how to craft one for yourself, ready for use in your browser.

10. Curtains Effect

Demo | Link

Want to give something the proper screen treatment it deserves? Unveil it with giant curtains using this jQuery tutorial.

11. Sticky Notes

Demo | Link

Add draggable, editable stick notes to your website with this fantastic jQuery plugin!

12. Lens Flare

Demo | Link

Want to make you’re images more interactive? Then adding a lens flare to your image is a fantastic way to do so. Check out these fantastic demos.

13. Star Rating

Demo | Link

Turn a boring set of radio buttons, or select drop down, into a fantastic looking star rating system with great fallback for JavaScript turned off.

14. Parallax

Demo | Link

Use Parallax to create a moving image relative to the mouse position where multiple layers move.

15. Jplayer


Allow users to listen to audio on your site with Jplayer which even supports html5!

16. MoaText

Demo | Link

Though I can’t really think of a practical application, this plugin lets you manipulate text with your mouse in wave effects and more.

17. Grid Accordion

Demo | Link

This is a fantastic tutorial from Chris Coyier at CSS-tricks on making a unique accordion that works as a grid.

18. Form Wizard

Demo | Link

Turn normal forms into a step-by-step wizard making your forms more usable and less daunting to users.

19. Lazy


Found yourself with an html head tag overflowing with css and JavaScript resources? Let Lazy fix that for you.

20. Elastic

Demo | Link

Elastic is an aptly named plugin that will grow your textarea as you type until you hit the max height defined.

21. UI Layout

Demo | Link

UI Layout makes complex layouts with sliding panels, and so on a breeze. The demo speaks for itself on this one.

22. Sliding Boxes and Captions


This great tutorial allows us to get dynamic with how image captions are displayed on images.

Further Discussion

I doubt I’ve found every fantastic unique jQuery plugin out there, so if you know of more, make sure you add them in the comments for others to see as well.

Matthew Corner

Matt is an 18 year old web designer from Scotland, UK. He loves creating beautiful websites across different platforms. High on his things to learn fully are Jquery and php. He is extremely excited by css3 and html5 and can't wait to see them rolled out fully. To learn more about Matt, follow him @QwibbleDesigns, or check out his portfolio.

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  1. says

    Thanks for this collection. With jquery you can add very cool features and effects to a website. There are always some interesting plugins in your article.

  2. burakg says

    Absolutely nice collection with carefully selected plugins. Thanks for the list

  3. says

    I have to say I’ve seen all of these plugins before, there are far more exhaustive lists out there (such as those on smashing magazine)

    • Rebecca says

      Yeh yeh yeh… We are to assume here, Jay Gilford, that being the clever dude you portray yourself to be, you would have not been here dissing the article. Dude, if you like Smashing Mag more… There’s the door! Of course, you might have known that already, right?

      Would it kill you to have something positive to say?

    • Ron says

      Nice list.

      When you get a porsche, there is always people that have a picture of a maserati.

  4. Ken says

    hey but this list is really great. I will start using a few. And wait the majority is working in IE6 too! Thanks bro!

  5. says

    Thanks for that – there are a couple of plugins there that I’ve not seen before….very useful – I’m liking Spritely & Quicksand quite a lot.

  6. gopal bhattacharjee says

    Good jQuery collections Matthew…..I’ll try some plug in add to my next project…