Css Positioning Cheat Sheet

Posted : admin On 1/29/2022

Layout mechanics

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  • Display

    • Controls how an element is represented within the flow.

    • display: inline

    • Allows other elements beside; margin, padding & width don’t work.

    • display: block

    • Takes up an entire line; margin, padding & width work.

    • display: inline-block

    • Allows other elements beside; margin, padding & width work. Can create columns, but will force a space between boxes.

    • Controls whether text is wrapped around the element.

    • float: left right none

    • Allows other elements to wrap around the element.

    • Multiple floats

    • Can create columns with boxes touching sides.

    • clear: left right both

    • Force the element below floated elements.

    • overflow: hidden

    • Use on a parent element to force it to wrap around the floated children—a clearfix.

  • Position

    • Gives strict, coordinate-based control over layout.

    • position: absolute

    • Move an element around based on coordinates.

    • position: relative

    • Added to a parent element to reset absolute child’s coordinates.

    • position: fixed

    • Forces an element to not move when the page is scrolled.

    • z-index

    • Control the stacking order of elements—higher number is closer.

Centering elements

    • Works only on display: inline & inline-block elements.

    • Must be applied to the parent element.

  • margin: 0 auto

    • Works only on display: block elements.

    • The element must have a width

    • You can also specify just margin-left: auto and margin-right: auto if you want margins on the top or bottom.

    • Works only on display: inline & inline-block elements.

  • Centering absolute

    • Use transform & 50% coordinates to center an absolutely positioned element.

    • Or vertical centering too…

    • There’s no float: center

    • You cannot center floated elements.

  • Centering with flexbox

    • Flex box has a bunch of different alignment classes—that are always applied to the parent.

    • This will be completely centered within the box.

Common code

    • Used to change layout math for width & padding.

    • Put at the top of every CSS file.

  • Clearfix for float

    • Add to the parent elements of floats to force the parent to surround the floated element.

    • Can be used instead of overflow: hidden

    • Use width & display to make images flex to their parent’s size.


align-contentPacks text lines to the left of the flex container
align-itemsSpecifies the default alignment for items inside a specific flex container
align-selfSpecifies the alignment for a selected item in a flex container
allResets all the properties to either inherited or initial value
animationA shorthand for the eight properties used for animation
animation-delaySpecifies the delay before an animation starts playing
animation-directionDefines if the animation plays in reverse or alternate cycles
animation-durationSets the duration of an animation cycle
animation-fill-modeSets the style for an element while the animation is not active (finished or delayed)
animation-iteration-countDefines the number of times an animation should normally repeat
animation-nameSpecifies the name of the animation
animation-timing-functionSpecifies the duration of time for an element to transition from one set of styles to another


backface-visibilityDefines if the element’s back is visible when it is not facing the screen
backgroundA shorthand for the eight properties used for background
background-clipSpecifies the area to which a background should extend
background-colorSets a background color
background-imageSets a background image for an element
background-originSpecifies where to position the background image
background-positionSpecifies the initial position of the background image
background-sizeDefines the size of the background image
borderA shorthand for the three properties used for borders
border-bottom-left-radiusDefines the rounded corners for an element
border-imageSpecifies the image to be used instead of a regular border
border-image-outsetSpecifies how much of the border image goes outside of the border box
border-image-repeatSpecifies if the border image is rounded, repeated or stretched
border-image-sliceSpecifies how a border image should be sliced
border-image-sourceSpecifies the path to access the image that you want to use as a border
border-image-widthSpecifies the border image width
border-radiusA shorthand for the four properties used for border radius
border-styleDefines the style of the border lines
border-top-left-radiusDefines the shape of the top left corner border
border-top-right-radiusDefines the shape of the top right corner border
border-bottom-left-radiusDefines the shape of the bottom left corner border
border-bottom-right-radiusDefines the shape of the bottom right corner border
box-shadowAdds a shadow to a box element
box-sizingSpecifies whether the height and width values represent the content box or the border box


colorSets the color of text
column-countSpecifies the number of columns an element should be divided into
column-gapDefines the gap between columns
column-ruleA shorthand for the three properties used for column rules
column-rule-colorSpecifies the color of the column rule
column-rule-styleSpecifies the style of the column rule
column-rule-widthSpecifies the width of of the column rule
column-spanSpecifies how many columns an element should span across
column-widthSpecifies the optimal width of a column
columnsA shorthand for column-width and column-count


displaySpecifies what kind of container the element will use


filterDefines visual effects for elements
flexA shorthand for flex-grow, flex-shrink and flex-basis
flex-basisSets the initial length of a flex item
flex-directionSpecifies the placement of flex items
flex-flowA shorthand for flex-direction and flex-wrap
flex-growSpecifies how much a flex item should grow when there's too much space in a flex container
flex-shrinkSpecifies how much a flex item should shrink when there's too little space in a flex container
fontA shorthand for the seven properties used for fonts
font-familyDefines what font an element will use when it has text in it
font-sizeSets the default size of text characters
font-size-adjustControls the sizing of lowercase letters
font-stretchDefines how wide or narrow the characters should be
font-styleDefines the text font style
font-weightDefines how thick or thin the characters should be


hanging-punctuationDefines if punctuation marks should be displayed outside of the lines to keep them properly aligned


justify-contentAligns flex items along the horizontal axis of the container


line-heightDefines the line height


marginAdds space around an element


nav-downDefines where the web page will navigate when the downwards arrow navigation key is pressed
nav-indexSets the sequence of navigation, or tabbing, order for elements
nav-leftDefines where the web page will navigate when the left arrow navigation key is pressed
nav-rightDefines where the web page will navigate when the right arrow navigation key is pressed
nav-upDefines where the web page will navigate when the upwards arrow navigation key is pressed


opacitySets the opacity level for an element
orderDefines the position of a specific flex item in the order of items in the same container
outlineDraws a line outside the element
outline-offsetAdds space between the outline and the border of the element
overflowDefines how the element behaves when the content cannot fit within its borders
overflow-xDefines how left and right sides of a container react to overflowing content
overflow-yDefines how top and bottom sides of a container react to overflowing content


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paddingAdds space around an element
perspectiveDefines how far away an object is to create a 3D perspective
perspective-originSpecifies where a 3D element originates from on the x– and y– axis
positionSpecifies how an element is positioned


resizeSpecifies whether a user can resize the element


tab-sizeDefines how much space the tab character is going to take up in the text
text-alignDefines the horizontal text alignment inside of an element
text-align-lastDefines the horizontal alignment for the last line of text
text-decorationA shorthand for the three properties used for text decoration lines
text-decoration-colorSets the color for all text decoration lines
text-decoration-lineSpecifies where text decoration line is displayed (below, above or through the text)
text-decoration-styleDefines the style of text decoration line
text-emphasisA shorthand for text-emphasis-style and text-emphasis-color
text-overflowDefines how the presence of overflowed content that is not displayed will be shown to the user
text-shadowAdds a shadow to the text
text-transformControls the capitalization of the text
transformApplies various transformations to an element
transitionA shorthand for the four properties used for transition
transition-delaySpecifies the transition starting point in time
transition-durationSpecifies how long a transition takes to finish
transition-propertyDefines the CSS property that is affected by the transition effect
transition-timing-functionSpecifies the speed curve of a transition

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vertical-alignSpecifies the vertical alignment for items inside an element
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word-breakDefines the line breaking rules for words when they reach the end of the line
word-wrapAllows breaking long words and wrapping them in the next line


z-indexDefines a position of an element on the z-axis


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:hoverDefines how elements should be styled when they are hovered on
@font-faceAllows you to use a font file and define the name of the font instead of having to use a web-safe font
@keyframesAllows specifying code for the animation
@mediaSpecifies different style rules for different devices and/or media types