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HTML Styles - CSS


CSS = Styles and Colors

Manipulate Text
Colors,  Boxes


Styling HTML with CSS

CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets

Styling can be added to HTML elements in 3 ways:

  • Inline - using a style attribute in HTML elements
  • Internal - using a <style> element in the HTML <head> section
  • External - using one or more external CSS files

The most common way to add styling, is to keep the styles in separate CSS files. But, in this tutorial, we use internal styling, because it is easier to demonstrate, and easier for you to try it yourself.

Note You can learn much more about CSS in our CSS Tutorial.

Inline Styling (Inline CSS)

Inline styling is used to apply a unique style to a single HTML element:

Inline styling uses the style attribute.

This example changes the text color of the <h1> element to blue:

Example

<h1 style="color:blue;">This is a Blue Heading</h1>
Try it Yourself »

Internal Styling (Internal CSS)

Internal styling is used to define a style for one HTML page.

Internal styling is defined in the <head> section of an HTML page, within a <style> element:

Example

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
<style>
body {background-color:lightgrey;}
h1   {color:blue;}
p    {color:green;}
</style>
</head>
<body>

<h1>This is a heading</h1>
<p>This is a paragraph.</p>

</body>
</html>
Try it Yourself »

External Styling (External CSS)

An external style sheet is used to define the style for many pages.

With an external style sheet, you can change the look of an entire web site by changing one file!

To use an external style sheet, add a link to it in the <head> section of the HTML page:

Example

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
  <link rel="stylesheet" href="styles.css">
</head>
<body>

<h1>This is a heading</h1>
<p>This is a paragraph.</p>

</body>
</html>
Try it Yourself »

An external style sheet can be written in any text editor. The file should not contain any html tags. The style sheet file must be saved with a .css extension.

Here is how the "styles.css" looks:

body {
    background-color: lightgrey;
}

h1 {
    color: blue;
}

p {
    color:green;
}

CSS Fonts

The CSS color property defines the text color to be used for the HTML element.

The CSS font-family property defines the font to be used for the HTML element.

The CSS font-size property defines the text size to be used for the HTML element.

Example

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
<style>
h1 {
    color: blue;
    font-family: verdana;
    font-size: 300%;
}
p  {
    color: red;
    font-family: courier;
    font-size: 160%;
}
</style>
</head>
<body>

<h1>This is a heading</h1>
<p>This is a paragraph.</p>

</body>
</html>
Try it Yourself »

The CSS Box Model

Every HTML element has a box around it, even if you cannot see it.

The CSS border property defines a visible border around an HTML element:

Example

p {
    border: 1px solid black;
}
Try it Yourself »

The CSS padding property defines a padding (space) inside the border:

Example

p {
    border: 1px solid black;
    padding: 10px;
}
Try it Yourself »

The CSS margin property defines a margin (space) outside the border:

Example

p {
    border: 1px solid black;
    padding: 10px;
    margin: 30px;
}
Try it Yourself »
Note The CSS examples above use px to define sizes in pixels.

The id Attribute

All the examples above use CSS to style HTML elements in a general way.

To define a special style for one special element, first add an id attribute to the element:

<p id="p01">I am different</p>

then define a style for the element with the specific id:

Example

#p01 {
    color: blue;
}
Try it Yourself »

The class Attribute

To define a style for a special type (class) of elements, add a class attribute to the element:

<p class="error">I am different</p>

Now you can define a different style for elements with the specific class:

Example

p.error {
    color: red;
}
Try it Yourself »
Note Use id to address a single element. Use class to address groups of elements.

Chapter Summary

  • Use the HTML style attribute for inline styling
  • Use the HTML <style> element to define internal CSS
  • Use the HTML <link> element to refer to an external CSS file
  • Use the HTML <head> element to store <style> and <link> elements
  • Use the CSS color property for text colors
  • Use the CSS font-family property for text fonts
  • Use the CSS font-size property for text sizes
  • Use the CSS border property for visible element borders
  • Use the CSS padding property for space inside the border
  • Use the CSS margin property for space outside the border

Test Yourself with Exercises!

Exercise 1 »  Exercise 2 »  Exercise 3 »  Exercise 4 »  Exercise 5 »  Exercise 6 »


HTML Style Tags

Tag Description
<style> Defines style information for an HTML document
<link> Defines a link between a document and an external resource