How to Solve a 3x3 Rubik's Cube Beginners Method

Learn how to solve a 3x3 Rubik's Cube with a completely free walkthrough guide from KewbzUK. Simply follow the steps below to solve your cube.This guide has been written with beginners in mind so any advanced cubers please bear with us, we will make this as fool proof as possible.

Please Note: All images used in this guide are generic pictures of 3x3 Speed Cubes and may not be genuine Rubik's brand cubes. All images are for illustrational and educational purposes only.

GAN 354 M

GAN 354 M

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Notation

When you see a letter by itself (U) you will perform the move in a clockwise rotation. However, when the letter is followed by an apostrophe (U') you will perform the move in an anti-clockwise rotation. Which way is clockwise on the Back Layer you ask? Well, imagine you were facing that layer, perform the move from this angle.

U - Top Layer

When you see a "U" by itself you must turn the TOP layer in either a clockwise or anti-clockwise rotation. 

F - Front Layer

When you see a "F" by itself you must turn the FRONT layer in either a clockwise or anti-clockwise rotation.

R - Right Layer

When you see a "R" by itself you must turn the RIGHT layer in either a clockwise or anti-clockwise rotation.

D - Down Layer

When you see a "D" by itself you must turn the BOTTOM layer in either a clockwise or anti-clockwise rotation.

B - Back Layer

When you see a "B" by itself you must turn the BACK layer in either a clockwise or anti-clockwise rotation.

L - Left Layer

When you see a "L" by itself you must turn the LEFT layer in either a clockwise or anti-clockwise rotation.

Step 1 - Solving the White Cross

We start by completing a cross on a chosen face, for this example I have chosen the White side. On your cube locate the white centre piece.

For each step we will take a look at different cases you may come across. The first step is very intuitive and there are not many cases that we can show you. You must not only complete the white cross on top but make sure the corresponding edge also fits into place.

Case 1

F U' R U

Case 2

R' U' R U R'

Case 3

L2 R2 U2 L2 R2

How to Solve a 3x3 - Step 1 Video Guide

Step 2 - Solving the White Corners

Right, with the top cross solved we must now solve the whole top layer ( make sure you hold the white cross on the top for the remainder of this step ). Locate any white corner piece and hold it beneath were it needs to go (for the example below we have used the WHITE , BLUE , RED corner piece (note we have placed it beneath the WHITE, BLUE and RED centre pieces).

Follow the cases below to complete the whole top layer.

Case 1

F D F'

Case 2

R' D' R

Case 3

R' D2 R D R' D' R

Case 4

(R' D' R D) x 4

Case 5

(R' D' R D) x 2

How to Solve a 3x3 - Step 2 Video Guide

Step 3 - Solving the Second Layer

You should now have the whole top layer completed, to proceed we must complete the middle layer. There are only 4 edge pieces which must be solved in this step (if your lucky some of them may already be in the correct place).

First we should turn our cube over so that the Yellow centred piece is on top and the White face that we just completed is on the bottom. Let's follow the cases below to complete this layer.

Case 1

U' L' U L U F U' F' 

Case 2

U R U' R' U' F' U F 

Case 3

(R U' R' F R' F' R U') x 2 

How to Solve a 3x3 - Step 3 Video Guide

Step 4a - The Yellow Cross

In this step we will create a yellow cross on the top layer (like we did with the white cross in step 1, also making sure we match up the edge pieces). Once step 3 has been completed you will have one of 4 cases, the 4th case will be a completed yellow cross so we will show you the other 3 (below).

Depending on whichever case you have - hold the cube as shown and perform the algorithm to create a yellow cross on the top layer.

Case 1

(F R U R' U' F') then move to case 2

Case 2

(F R U R' U' F' U) then move to case 3

Case 3

F R U R' U' F'  

Step 4b - Finishing the Yellow Cross

Hold your puzzle as shown so that the yellow cross is on the top layer and the front edge piece is in the correct position along with the right hand edge piece also being in the correct position (as shown in the image). This will leave the left hand edge piece and back edge piece to be swapped.

Note: If you cannot make the front and right edge pieces match then simply perform the algorithm from any face, then repeat Step 4b

Case 1

F U F' U F U2 F' U

How to Solve a 3x3 - Step 4 Video Guide

Step 5 - Permuting the Last Layer

In this step we will move all of the corners to their correct place (not necessarily in the correct rotation however). If all corners of your top layer are in the correct place then move on to step 6.

Locate 1 corner that is already in the correct place (making sure not to twist any layers of your cube).
Hold the corner piece in the front right hand corner as shown in the images below.

Note: In all 3 images below the corner piece in the FRONT, RIGHT corner on the top face is in the correct place (just rotated differently). The other 3 corner pieces are in the incorrect place.

Perform the algorithm:  U R U' L' U R' U' L  with the solved corner in the front right corner of the top face. This algorithm will cycle the other 3 corners in an anti-clockwise rotation.

This will leave you with a nearly solved Rubik's Cube. All corners on the top layer will be in their correct places but just out of rotation (not all yellows are facing upwards).

How to Solve a 3x3 - Step 5 Video Guide

Step 6 - Solving the Cube

In this final step we will rotate the last few corners and solve our Rubik's Cube completely. Hold your cube in any rotation and make sure the yellow cross is on the top layer. Let's follow the bullet points below: