Pros and Cons of Using a CSS Framework

CSS frameworks are pre-prepared software frameworks that are meant to allow for easier, more standards-compliant web design using the Cascading Style Sheets language. Most of these frameworks contain at least a grid. More functional frameworks also come with more features and additional JavaScript based functions, but are mostly design oriented and unobtrusive. This differentiates these from functional and full JavaScript frameworks.

Two notable and widely used examples are Bootstrap or Foundation.

CSS frameworks offer different modules and tools:

  • reset style sheet
  • grid especially for responsive web design
  • web typography
  • set of icons in sprites or icon fonts
  • styling for tooltips, buttons, elements of forms
  • parts of graphical user interfaces like accordion, tabs, slideshow or modal windows (Lightbox)
  • equalizer to create equal height content
  • often used css helper classes (lefthide)

Bigger frameworks use a CSS interpreter like LESS or SASS.

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