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CSS with superpowers: Why use them and which is the best?

CSS Pre-processors has been a part of our development for many years. They also had a few characteristics in their first deployments. However, they are now crucial components and techniques for CSS progression. CSS pre-processors add variables, operators, interpolations, functions, mixins, and a plethora of other useful assets. The well-known parts are SASS, LESS, and Stylus.

What really is CSS?

CSS full form is cascading style sheets. It’s the term used to characterize how well a memo written in a programming language like HTML should look. CSS, in conjunction with Html and JavaScript, constitutes the base for digital web links. A search engine can only recognize CSS, which is sometimes insufficient for effective protocol and usable norms.

CSS allows you to explain the appearance of a website using elements such as hues, design, and text. CSS can also adjust to different systems and screen resolutions. It is easier to build a website when CSS and HTML are separated. You can then start sharing template files across pages and adapt them to various environments. However, just by using CSS, the creative director can be the creative director able to utilize a catalog of regulations in numerous selectors with ambiguous records all over a stylesheet. The notion of a coprocessor was designed to overcome all of these limitations. It provided a more advanced method of composing CSS that spreads the basic features and functionality. This innovative code is then compiled into standard CSS code that the webpage can understand.

Why should CSS be pre-processed?

CSS is crude and unfinished. It is difficult to create a function and reuse a definition or inheritance. Maintenance is a major issue for larger projects or complex systems. But on the other side, the online world is emerging, and new specifications for HTML and CSS are being initiated. Browsers use these system requirements while in proposal mode, along with their unique vendor identifiers. 

There were various approaches to writing better CSS, such as isolating interpretations into smaller batches and transporting them into a single main file. This approach aided in dealing with elements but did not address code repetition or maintainability issues. Another methodology was to enact an entity system early on. Inside this case, two or more class conceptions are used to create an element. Each class adds a different aesthetic to the element. The use of various courses increased reusability while decreasing maintainability.

What issue does CSS address?

CSS fixes the massive issue of expelling the layout of the homepage from the HTML as a whole. It is used to describe the site structure, as we discussed in our HTML context. Consider it like the house’s beams. Such as if something is a title, a summary, a link, and so on.

<Font> and color attributes were appended to HTML over the moment. This turned into a disaster for web developers. Even without the opportunity to exchange styles, each post’s style and layout must be written from scratch. This time accumulates, lengthening and increasing the cost of the planning process.

CSS separates the style from the HTML and stores it in its file. CSS style sheet An HTML document allows you to change the appearance of an existing internet with a single file. CSS makes life a lot easier by creating the style more workable in this way.

What exactly are CSS preprocessors?

There are some drawbacks. Composing usual vanilla (ordinary) CSS can become tedious as the web evolves.

CSS preprocessors supplement the functionality of standard CSS. They include additional logical syntax and tools such as factors, if/else statements, and loops. This makes CSS more productive and concise, as well as powerful and dynamic. A CSS preprocessor enables developers to create a more complicated style and layout. The original data can be made more concise and readable.

CSS preprocessors add language that is not found in CSS itself to achieve this goal. CSS that is far more advanced is written to extend the basic functionalities. This enhanced code is then compiled into standard CSS code which the search engine understands.

What Is the Variation Between These Common Preprocessors?


Sass, LESS, and Stylus are the three major preprocessors. While almost 80 percent of the total of Sass, LESS, and Stylus are the same, more or less every CSS preprocessor seems to have its plan for achieving the same task. The remaining 20% is mainly composed of minor variations in improved usage. Variables, hypermedia, mixins, nesting, loops, conditionals, as well as importing are all supported by all three compilers. All three allow you to use ambiguous key styling cues, use logic, and write fewer commands, giving you an added benefit over basic CSS.



Sass is based on Ruby and includes paradigms such as Gumby and Foundation. Sass does have fantastic mixing repositories like Compass and Bourbon. @extend, @media, and @content are some of the disparities between Sass and LESS & Stylus. @Extend allows you to pass a collection of CSS assets from one classifier to the other. @Media allows you to use media queries directly within nesting, enabling you to directly target pixel density. It is easier to transfer a component of genres to the mixin for placing inside the styles using @content. The styles will be applied to any @content guidelines discovered within the mixin.


SCSS is similar to Sass but more similar to regular CSS. It is entirely CSS functional, which means you can insert standard CSS into the SCSS file, and then it will work right away.


LESS flows in the search engine, within Node JavaScript. The major distinction between LESS and some other CSS preprocessors is that LESS supports genuine compendium in internet explorer via less.js. When you generate a mixin in Sass or Stylus, you assemble a team of CSS proclamations, but in LESS, you seamlessly integrate the mixin into class possessions.


Stylus, which is assembled on node.js, removes all of the additional bits that clutter up your CSS. Stylus allows for syntax flexibility, allowing you to omit braces, commas, and even colons. The Stylus includes advanced in-language operations and predicate logic.

Compiling SASS to CSS

However, the chrome browser somehow doesn’t recognize Sass code; it only grasps CSS code. This indicates you must convert the Sass code to CSS code.

To accomplish this, the developer will yield a file containing the CSS code. This is referred to as compilation. When you compose Sass code in an a.scss file, it is consolidated into a standard CSS file, which the search engine has used to demonstrate the code on the homepage.

Why Should You Use Sass?

There are numerous benefits to the use of Sass, so let’s have a look at them:

To begin, if you remember CSS, Sass is simple to grasp. Because it is a CSS preprocessor, the syntax is similar. Furthermore, if you are using Sass, then CSS code will then be congruent with all system based.

Sass also allows you to reuse commands by constructing functions in the system with mixins.  This saves time and enables you to code more quickly. Sass lessens the duplication of drafting CSS code, which saves time. This is due to features such as functions, inheritance, etc. Eventually, Sass is consolidated to CSS and includes all of the needful vendor identifiers so you never have to write them manually.


What is Sass CSS Preprocessor?

Syntactically Awesome Style Sheets (Sass) is an influential CSS preprocessor high-level programming language that enables people to work on your stylesheet much more quickly than ever before. Variables, nesting, modules, and other features not found in CSS can be used with Sass. Apart from Sass, two significant CSS modifications are Stylus and LESS.

You could also use Sass to optimize DRY (Don’t Repeat Yourself) CSS and contribute to making your code more intelligible. Furthermore, it is perfectly interoperable with all CSS versions. You will feel much more comfortable and capable of handling huge projects once you become acquainted with Sass.


Advantages of Using the Sass CSS Preprocessor:

Some of the advantages of using Sass are listed below.

  1. Necessitates Limited Coding – In comparison, Sass appears to require quite a few commands and assists programmers in quickly writing CSS.
  2. Dynamic Code Compilation – Unlike many other preprocessors, Sass allows you to easily collate your code.
  3. A Larger Tech Community – Sass has a large ecosystem and a large number of current developers.
  4. Strong FrameworksSass utilizes a Gps device for mixins, which includes nearly all viable choices, as well as security patches for long-term support.


Sass Syntax Varieties:

Sass is written in two formats:  .scss and .sass. Both have their syntax.

  • SCSS: SCSS is also known as Sassy CSS. You could use the scss extension to save it. It is a specialized version of CSS, which contains all of CSS’s features. You can also easily adapt to SCSS if you are intimately acquainted with the fundamentals of CSS.
  • Indented Syntax (Old): The .sass extension can be used to implement Indented Syntax on a style sheet. It has a more massive audience than .scss because it allows you to write stuff more instantly and coherently. Indented syntax describes the layout of the memorandum using indentation, whereas .scss uses syntax and comma. Here is an exemplar of indented syntax:


How to Make the Most of Sass Features

Now since we know what the Sass CSS preprocessor does and how it works, let’s look at some of the details that help it become so powerful.

  • Variables: Sass makes it easy to store values in variables, which you can use anywhere you want them. For example, you can save a specific color in a component at the edge of your style sheet and use that indicator and do whatever you want to implement that color.
  • Nesting: You can eliminate a lot of code by using this method. The nesting framework in Sass is equivalent to that of HTML. The presentation of both innovations is the same. However, remember that if you don’t implement it properly, nesting will over-qualify CSS.
  • Partials: This is one of Sass’s most advanced features. Partials are similar to collapsible style sheets in that they can be tied to other style sheets and used in a whole other CSS file. It enables you to effortlessly carry and retain your code. Remember that the executable for partials should begin with just an underscore: document .scss.
  • Modules: You can even use the @use rule to choose other sass documents in your prevailing sass file, as noted previously. It allows you to include multiple .sass files in your word document. Remember that every consumption will result in a major HTTP request.


Final thoughts

CSS preprocessors are widely used. Many businesses will have them as key components of the digital development cycle. Which of these is best invariably depends on the application, the developers’ preferences, and the moment the venture was created.

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Best Practices in CSS

CSS stands for Cascading style sheet that is used to style and layout web pages. For example, you can use CSS to change your font size, color, family, etc. To use CSS like a pro, you must follow some tricks to keep your code clean and optimized. Whether you are an expert or a beginner you must follow these steps that are best for your website design.


1. Organized code

You don’t need to put all of your CSS in one file unless you’re going to use it. If a user arrives at the home page, only the styles for that page should be included. Essential styles are the ones that the user sees after the page loads, while non-essential styles are those that have been concealed, such as dialogue, snack bars, and notifications. Elements or components that must be activated by the user.

Maintain a sense of order. Instead of throwing in ids and classes in whatever sequence that comes to mind, use a logical framework. It will assist you in remembering the cascading aspect of CSS, which allows you to use style inheritance in your stylesheets.


2. Top-Down approach

It’s always a good idea to organize your CSS so that you can find parts of your code easily. A top-down approach that addresses styles as they arise in the source code is what I recommend.

The readability of your CSS is crucial, despite the fact that most users don’t realize why. Because you’ll be able to identify elements faster if your CSS is well-read, it will be a lot easier to maintain in the future. Furthermore, you never know who might need to look at your code in the future.


3. Lazy Loading

There are various ways to lazy load CSS, but using bundlers like WebPack and experimenting with dynamic import makes it a lot easier. You can make your own Javascript CSS loader or use the <link> tag to delay non-critical CSS when including stylesheets in your website.

Images and iframes can both benefit from lazy loading. This image or iframe should not be loaded until it is visible in the viewport.”


4. Shorthand CSS

You may wish to specify padding-top or border-right at times, but I’ve found that I frequently return to these to add more, so I’ve adopted the habit of always using the shorthand to make it easy to update without providing many attributes. It’s simpler to alter and has fewer lines of code.

When writing CSS, you can significantly reduce the size of your code by using shorthand. You can mix styles in one line for elements like padding, margin, font, and others. A div, for example, may contain the following styles:

#box {

    margin-left: 5px;

    margin-right:   7px;

    margin-top: 8px;


It can be written as


    margin: 8px 7px 0px 5px;



5. Utility Classes

If you frequently utilize the same tricks or styles, make them into class utils that can be applied directly to the HTML element. These are things like a center with display flex or grid for me, so I make a class called .center-flex and a class called .center-grid. To automate these repetitious style combinations, use class utilities.


6. Consistent code

The importance of consistency cannot be overstated. Even if you’re doing everything wrong, stick with it because it’ll be easier to correct afterward. Adopt a CSS approach, organize styles in the same way, establish how many levels you nest selectors, and so on. Define your personal style and stick to it, refining it through time.

Making sure your CSS is consistent goes hand in hand with keeping your code readable. You should start creating your own CSS “sub-language” that allows you to label things easily. There are certain classes that are created nearly in every theme, and you can call them by the same name every time. For example, use .caption-left to float images with a caption to the left.


7. Preprocessors

A preprocessor goes through your raw files and turns them into a stylesheet. CSS preprocessors enable you to write less CSS in a more efficient and effective manner. They’re jam-packed with tools and features that will help you manage your CSS, avoid duplication, and modularize it. Using a preprocessor such as LESS or SASS aids in the creation of clean code.


8. Avoid Inline CSS

Only the use of the !important flag can overwrite an inline style, and as you’ll see in the next block, the !important flag can be problematic, even though inline styles require it. A further reason to avoid them is that you included an external stylesheet for a reason, and that reason is to keep style and structure distinct (HTML). There are exceptions, but if you have a style in your external stylesheets, a style in HTML, or a style in Javascript, it becomes difficult to track what is causing the change, and it becomes difficult to manage as the codebase increases.

Content and presentation are mixed up when inline styles are used. Inline styles are just as terrible as relying on strictly appearance HTML elements like the font. It results in clumsy code, as each HTML file must be modified individually in the event of a style change, rather than a single global modification in a single external stylesheet.


9. Avoid !important

You’ll need to add the !important flag if you’re using Bootstrap and actually want to replace a style, but why are you using Bootstrap in the first place? If you find yourself needing to utilize the !important flag, it’s usually a hint that something is wrong. You might be using a difficult-to-overwrite third-party library; you might be using inline styles; you might be using selectors that are too particular; you might have a CSS hierarchy or order issue, or you should try to grasp how CSS specificity is computed.

However, you should avoid doing so because using !important with a large number of elements will eventually result in !important losing its meaning. Because every CSS rule now bypasses selector specificity.


10. Relative Units

You should make an effort to use relative units more frequently. Words like em, rem, percent, vw, vh, fr, and so on. Although there are occasions where these value units are required, setting fixed values with px and pt should be reserved for static design. Your website and units should be flexible, much like the browser.

Ems is more scalable with different browser screens and mobile devices than pixels, which are a more static means to describe font sizes. With the rise of multiple forms of online browsing (laptop, mobile, etc. ), ems and rems are gradually becoming the standard for font size measures since they provide the most versatility.



Comments are the most integral part of all programming, markup, and scripting language. Commenting is beneficial; use it! Add a comment if you develop difficult hacks or find scenarios when something works but you don’t understand why. Add comments for complicated items, organize your CSS, assist others to understand your reasoning and plan, and help you make sense of your mess when you return to it later.

Simply type /* behind the comment and */ to close it, as shown below:

/* This is a CSS Comment */


12. Reset CSS

Every browser has a different default style for the elements, so it’s possible that your object will look one way in one browser and another, or that it will have an extra border or shape that you weren’t anticipating. By resetting or normalizing your CSS, you can expedite these processes and ensure that your style looks consistent across all browsers. Browser inconsistencies such as heights, font sizes, margins, and headings are essentially eliminated when you reset your browser. The reset ensures that your layout is consistent across all browsers.


13. CSS Compressors

CSS compressors reduce the size of CSS files by eliminating line breaks, white spaces, and merging elements. This combination can significantly reduce file size, resulting in faster browser loading. CSS Minifier and HTML Compressor are two great online CSS compression tools. It’s worth noting that while reducing the size of your CSS can improve efficiency, it also reduces readability.


14. Browser Developer tools

Modern web browsers include a number of essential features that any web developer should have. All of the major browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge, now provide these development tools. You may visually inspect, alter, and edit CSS in real-time using the Chrome and Firefox developer tools, which include features like debugging JavaScript, evaluating HTML, and viewing errors.


15. Validate your CSS
Validating your CSS gives you more than a sense of accomplishment: it also aids in the detection of flaws in your code. If anything doesn’t appear right when you’re working on a design, try running the markup and CSS validator to see what issues come up. Usually, you’ll discover that you neglected to close a div or that a semicolon in a CSS attribute was missing.



This concludes our CSS  Best Practices Guide. Understanding, writing, and organizing CSS is an art form. No one can become a better CSS writer overnight; it takes time and effort. These have been quite beneficial to me in my CSS adventure, and I am confident that they will be beneficial to you as well. 


Startxlabs, one of India’s top digital transformation service providers. Launched in 2014, Startxlabs aims in innovating a digital future by developing technology for the web and mobile platforms. From our beginning as a technology development company, we’ve tried to stay true to our core beliefs and to deliver exceptional services to our clients. Whether it’s people we work for or people who work for us, we value honesty, passion, and the desire to explore. We have expertise in website development, android app development, iOS app development, Flutter, React Native app development, UI/UX design, and marketing strategy. With the engagement of our highly technical team, we have delivered over 110+ projects providing a positive impact on the users.

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7 Common Cross Browser Issues Every Developer Face

A website you build will be browsed using different types of browsers by different people across the world. Each browser has its different versions. So if you need your website to be successfully browsed by people without any inconvenience, it should be compatible with different versions of the different browsers. What makes the website incompatible? There are so many issues every developer faces while developing a website that makes it incompatible with the browsers. In this article, we will discuss the 7 common cross-browser issues faced by the developers.

HTML or CSS  Code Specific Errors

Cross-browser testing involves the proper validation of HTML and CSS codes. Invalid codes can be a major problem during the testing. Cross-browser testing expects valid codes since different browsers are going to read and handle them. Developers may have a possibility of making very negligible errors as simple as not closing the tags. Some browsers may auto-correct this, but some browsers cannot. Browsers such as Firefox and Chrome can detect such issues and can resolve them, but some other browsers cannot resolve such issues by themselves.

There are certain issues that are not considered errors, but they behave differently with different browsers. That’s why we should be careful while writing our code. Such kind of issues is discussed below.

  • Commenting on code: If we comment on a specific part of a CSS code that is not useful, it will behave differently with different browsers and can cause issues. So, it is always recommended to remove the unnecessary codes instead of commenting on them.
  • Empty Tags: When you have empty HTML tags in your code, the browsers will take space for them which is unnecessary. It is always the best practice to remove the empty tags or you can give the display property as none to avoid incompatibility with different browsers.
  • Input Tags Font: While handling input tags, always make sure to set the fontFamily property to “initial” to display the input, in the font that you have already used for the body of your content. Otherwise, the input will be displayed in its default font Arial.
  • Button Tags: For button tags in HTML, always make sure to remove the outline and border property as it may behave differently with different browsers.
  • Input elements in Safari: When browsing with Safari, you will find an inner shadow on the top, in all the input elements. To remove the shadow, set border-radius to “0”, webkit-appearance to “none” and webkit-border-radius to “0”.
  • Blurred SVG in Safari: Sometimes, the elements of the SVG image don’t break down while zooming into the image, making the image look blur. In that case, we can replace <img /> tag with the <object> tag, with the “data” attribute containing the image URL.  Ex –
<object data="smiley.svg"></object>

Validation of HTML involves ensuring whether all the tags are properly closed, whether the tags are used correctly according to their purpose, whether DOCTYPE is used, and more. CSS Validation is also the same, whether property names and values are properly spelled, whether curly braces are correctly matched, and so on. To resolve this issue, it is always recommended to use HTML and CSS code validating tools such as W3C HTML Validator and Jigsaw CSS Validator.

Unavailable CSS Resets 

Every browser possesses a specific design layout or some basic styles of CSS that is imposed on the website when opened in it, by default. So, if a website wants to use its specific layout, then it has to override the already available, default layout. Otherwise, the website will be rendered in a different way that depends upon the currently used browser. So, to avoid this a CSS reset style sheet can be used on your web page to ensure whether the browser you are using starts its rendering with the same set of basic rules. Some of the commonly used CSS reset style sheets are HTML5Reset, Eric Meyers CSS Reset, and Normalize.css. Twitter Bootstrapped and many other famous front-end frameworks don’t need an external reset as they already have a reset with them.

Read our article on Getting started with React Native Flexbox Layout

Vendor-Specific Styles 

Each browser has its specific CSS style based on the vendor. Whenever the browser tries to introduce a new CSS feature, it will be coded based on the vendor-specific style. It is essential to avoid the issues of cross-browser compatibility. Different prefixes are used for different browsers to enable the browser vendors to apply their version of the CSS feature. Some of the prefixes are,

  • -moz- for Mozilla
  • -webkit- for Chrome/ Safari
  • -o- for Opera
  • -ms- for Microsoft.

Production websites are never supposed to use prefixed features and they can change or remove without giving any warning and thus results in cross-browser issues. Always be careful while using the prefixed features and make sure whether you are using the correct prefix for a particular browser. You can check the specified prefixes for the browsers on websites like caniuse.com. A simple way to solve this issue is by attaching a prefix-free JavaScript Library to your webpage as it will automatically detect the browsers and add the prefixes accordingly. It can also be resolved by adding prefixes automatically in the process of development, by using tools like PostCSS and Autoprefixer.

Incompatible Layouts 

By implementing CSS Resets, it is possible to remove the default browser designs and to apply our designs. However, this can result in compatibility issues because of adding a non-responsive design (doesn’t looking good in mobile browsers) or because of the inability of certain browsers or their versions to support certain layouts. Layout features don’t provide efficient fallbacks because of simple colors, gradients, or shadows. However, ignoring them completely will make your entire design fall down. It is suggested to use tools like CSS grids and Flexbox when you are working with modern layouts for your website. Most of the modern browsers of today’s age extend their support to these tools and are most effective to use by developers.

It is always recommended to use feature detection as it can detect whether a browser can support the layout features you are going to use. You should be careful while selecting the layout features according to the result you are expecting. For implementing feature detection tests, we can use @supports, a newly introduced feature in CSS.


As we know, the very first line in every HTML document will be the Doctype-!DOCTYPE HTML. Missing this single line can determine your entire website. This line determines whether your website will be cleanly rendered or strangely rendered. Whenever a browser behaves differently, make sure to check your Doctype, because missing it may result in faulty rendering.

Generally, a browser operates in two ways or modes. They are Strict Mode and Quirks Mode. Strict Mode performs stricter code checks according to the W3C standards and Quirks Mode doesn’t perform such stricter error checks. Whenever an HTML document misses the doctype line, the browser will go into Quirks Mode. For example, Internet Explorer will go into Quirks mode when it fails to encounter the DOCTYPE and it would have its own web standards in a quite different way. This results in making the webpage display incorrectly and makes some of the tags become unresponsive.

These are the five most common cross-browser issues every developer faces. Apart from these issues, always make sure to check whether the browser is outdated.

Cross-browser Testing 

Cross-browser testing is essential to check whether your web apps and websites run efficiently on different browsers. Websites have to undergo cross-browser testing, in order to be browsed without any compatibility issues on different browsers like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Edge, and Safari and on different OS combinations.

Cross-browser testing enables you to specifically find out the errors and issues on your website and let you debug those errors quickly. There are two ways of performing cross-browser testing. They are manual testing and online testing. Manual testing involves testing the websites manually on all browsers. For that, you need different browsers to be installed on your device. This process consumes a lot of time and sometimes it is inefficient because of different versions of the browsers.

Another yet powerful method is testing through tools available online. This method involves testing the website on an online testing tool that has different browsers along with different versions on their servers. This method saves your time as well your effort and money and makes the testing process simple. There are some tools available online to test your website for cross-browser compatibility. One such tool is the Lambda test.

  •  LambdaTest 

LambdaTest is an online cross-browser compatibility testing tool, that allows your website to be tested across locally or publicly hosted websites and on more than 2000 mobiles and browsers running on a real OS. It also lets you debug codes using the integrated debug tools in real-time. LambdaTest provides a lot of features along with browser testing such as,

  • Selenium Automation Testing
  • Provides automated test screenshots
  • Ensures whether your website runs efficiently on all screen sizes
  • For testing the locally hosted pages, it uses Tunnel
  • Visual Regression Testing
  • Testing for Resolution display
  • Geolocation testing and more.

LambdaTest also allows integration with third-party apps. This tool remains helpful for many to test their websites and to improve the performance of their websites and web applications.

  •  TestingBot 

TestingBot is another online tool that provides testing on more than 2300 browsers and devices in the cloud. This tool allows both manual and automated testing to test your websites and applications. TestingBot provides features such as

  • Record and replay browser tests
  • It allows running Appium and Selenium automated tests
  • Requirements-based Testing
  • Parallel execution support
  • Security testing

Testing on Real Devices 

The last and essential thing to do is to test your website on real machines for compatibility issues. The website should be tested on real devices with real browsers by real users. Your website will be tested using the native features of a device only by testing it on the real devices and also provides a realistic environment for testing.

Features such as screen resolutions, hardware features like Bluetooth, Wifi, GPS, and push notifications can be tested quickly as the testing is performed in real-time using the real devices.

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