Function Components

These can be written as normal functions that take a props argument and return a JSX element.

// Declaring type of props - see "Typing Component Props" for more examples
type AppProps = {
message: string;
}; /* use `interface` if exporting so that consumers can extend */
// Easiest way to declare a Function Component; return type is inferred.
const App = ({ message }: AppProps) => <div>{message}</div>;
// you can choose annotate the return type so an error is raised if you accidentally return some other type
const App = ({ message }: AppProps): JSX.Element => <div>{message}</div>;
// you can also inline the type declaration; eliminates naming the prop types, but looks repetitive
const App = ({ message }: { message: string }) => <div>{message}</div>;

Tip: You might use Paul Shen's VS Code Extension to automate the type destructure declaration (incl a keyboard shortcut).

Why is React.FC discouraged? What about React.FunctionComponent/React.VoidFunctionComponent?

You may see this in many React+TypeScript codebases:

const App: React.FunctionComponent<{ message: string }> = ({ message }) => (
<div>{message}</div>
);

However, the general consensus today is that React.FunctionComponent (or the shorthand React.FC) is discouraged. This is a nuanced opinion of course, but if you agree and want to remove React.FC from your codebase, you can use this jscodeshift codemod.

Some differences from the "normal function" version:

  • React.FunctionComponent is explicit about the return type, while the normal function version is implicit (or else needs additional annotation).

  • It provides typechecking and autocomplete for static properties like displayName, propTypes, and defaultProps.

    • Note that there are some known issues using defaultProps with React.FunctionComponent. See this issue for details. We maintain a separate defaultProps section you can also look up.
  • Before the React 18 type updates, React.FunctionComponent provided an implicit definition of children (see below), which was heavily debated and is one of the reasons React.FC was removed from the Create React App TypeScript template.

// before React 18 types
const Title: React.FunctionComponent<{ title: string }> = ({
children,
title,
}) => <div title={title}>{children}</div>;
(Deprecated)Using React.VoidFunctionComponent or React.VFC instead

In @types/react 16.9.48, the React.VoidFunctionComponent or React.VFC type was added for typing children explicitly. However, please be aware that React.VFC and React.VoidFunctionComponent were deprecated in React 18 (https://github.com/DefinitelyTyped/DefinitelyTyped/pull/59882), so this interim solution is no longer necessary or recommended in React 18+.

Please use regular function components or React.FC instead.

type Props = { foo: string };
// OK now, in future, error
const FunctionComponent: React.FunctionComponent<Props> = ({
foo,
children,
}: Props) => {
return (
<div>
{foo} {children}
</div>
); // OK
};
// Error now, in future, deprecated
const VoidFunctionComponent: React.VoidFunctionComponent<Props> = ({
foo,
children,
}) => {
return (
<div>
{foo}
{children}
</div>
);
};
  • In the future, it may automatically mark props as readonly, though that's a moot point if the props object is destructured in the parameter list.

In most cases it makes very little difference which syntax is used, but you may prefer the more explicit nature of React.FunctionComponent.

Minor Pitfalls

These patterns are not supported:

Conditional rendering

const MyConditionalComponent = ({ shouldRender = false }) =>
shouldRender ? <div /> : false; // don't do this in JS either
const el = <MyConditionalComponent />; // throws an error

This is because due to limitations in the compiler, function components cannot return anything other than a JSX expression or null, otherwise it complains with a cryptic error message saying that the other type is not assignable to Element.

Array.fill

const MyArrayComponent = () => Array(5).fill(<div />);
const el2 = <MyArrayComponent />; // throws an error

Unfortunately just annotating the function type will not help so if you really need to return other exotic types that React supports, you'd need to perform a type assertion:

const MyArrayComponent = () => Array(5).fill(<div />) as any as JSX.Element;

See commentary by @ferdaber here.