A Beginner’s Approach to Solving the 3X3 Rubik’s Cube


A Rubik’s Cube is one of the most common pieces of puzzle we find in our lives. While you’re traveling in train, bus, visiting a grocery store or buying a pen at a stationery store, chances are very high that you might find Rubik’s Cube being sold. That’s the market penetration and popularity of the puzzle that has sold over 500 million units. However, what remains a fact is that not many of us know how to solve one. On this post, we will get a little closer in solving the Rubik’s Cube through a series of simple steps. So, if you have a Rubik’s Cube near you, get it and follow the instructions.


Get to know your Cube

One of the first things in solving a Rubik’s Cube is to know your cube. Before you can start twisting and turning the pieces, you need to analyze the current placement of colors and learn a few algorithms. For a beginner, it would be enough to know that there three different types of pieces in a Rubik’s Cube – edge pieces with two colors that are situated in the middle rows, left pieces with just one color (at the center of each face) and corner pieces with 3 colors.

Corner pieces are eight in total and as the name suggests, in the corners. Another feature you should notice is that the color locations are always the same in all Rubik’s cubes. Meaning, white is opposite to yellow, green is opposite to blue and orange is opposite to red.

Now, hold your cube right in front of you with the cube’s logo facing the top, we will show the letters that each side of a cube is represented with.


R – the right face of the cube

L – the left face of the cube

U – the up face of the cube

D – the down face of the cube

F – the front face of the cube

B – the back face of the cube

Another combination of these faces is their counterclockwise rotation, where the letters are represented with an ‘i’. For instance, if we are talking about a move that involves the right face of the cube to be moved counterclockwise, it would be represented as Ri.

All good?

White Cross

The second step in solving the Rubik’s cube is making a white cross on the puzzle’s top face. There are no algorithms or procedures involved and this stage usually comes with practice and trial and error methods.


White Corners

Remember we told corner pieces will have three colors? It’s time to focus on the white color of the corner pieces and bring them to the top face so the entire top face is filled with white.


The Middle Layer

You are just a few steps from solving your Rubik’s cube. For this step, you have to hold your cube with the down face on the top. This means that the white section that you just completed will go down as the down face. Now, you have to focus on the middle layer by positioning the edge pieces – with two colors – at their respective places.


The Top Layer

This step requires you to make an all-yellow top layer just like how you made a white cross earlier. This stage would require you to focus only on bringing together pieces of yellow together, without altering the course of the current Rubik’s cube. Once you’re done with the yellow cross, now work on making the corners yellow. Making the corners yellow and correctly positioning the yellow edges will let you finish the Rubik’s cube.

Remember that this post is to give you a direction in solving the Rubik’s Cube and not give you step-by-step procedures. We could give you step-wise algorithms and make you solve the cube in under 5 minutes. But hey! Where’s the fun in this? If you’ve been randomly moving the pieces until now, this direction would give you clear ideas on approaching the solution. Have fun!