CSS: Margin,Padding

MARGIN:

With CSS, you have full control over the margins. There are properties for setting the margin for each side of an element (top, right, bottom, and left).

The CSS margin properties are used to create space around elements, outside of any defined borders.

CSS has properties for specifying the margin for each side of an element:

  • margin-top
  • margin-right
  • margin-bottom
  • margin-left

All the margin properties can have the following values:

  • auto – the browser calculates the margin
  • length – specifies a margin in px, pt, cm, etc.
  • % – specifies a margin in % of the width of the containing element
  • inherit – specifies that the margin should be inherited from the parent element

Tip: Negative values are allowed.

The following example sets different margins for all four sides of a <p> element:

Margin – Shorthand Property

To shorten the code, it is possible to specify all the margin properties in one property.

The margin property is a shorthand property for the following individual margin properties:

  • margin-top
  • margin-right
  • margin-bottom
  • margin-left

So, here is how it works:

If the margin property has four values:

  • margin: 25px 50px 75px 100px;
    • top margin is 25px
    • right margin is 50px
    • bottom margin is 75px
    • left margin is 100px

Example

p {
margin: 25px 50px 75px 100px;
}

If the margin property has three values:

  • margin: 25px 50px 75px;
    • top margin is 25px
    • right and left margins are 50px
    • bottom margin is 75px

Example

p {
margin: 25px 50px 75px;
}

The auto Value

You can set the margin property to auto to horizontally center the element within its container.

The element will then take up the specified width, and the remaining space will be split equally between the left and right margins:

Example

div {
width: 300px;
margin: auto;
border: 1px solid red;
}

Margin Collapse

Top and bottom margins of elements are sometimes collapsed into a single margin that is equal to the largest of the two margins.

This does not happen on left and right margins! Only top and bottom margins!

Look at the following example:

Example

h1 {
margin: 0 0 50px 0;
}

h2 {
margin: 20px 0 0 0;
}

In the example above, the <h1> element has a bottom margin of 50px and the <h2> element has a top margin set to 20px.

Common sense would seem to suggest that the vertical margin between the <h1> and the <h2> would be a total of 70px (50px + 20px). But due to margin collapse, the actual margin ends up being 50px.

CSS Padding:

With CSS, you have full control over the padding. There are properties for setting the padding for each side of an element (top, right, bottom, and left).

The CSS padding properties are used to generate space around an element’s content, inside of any defined borders.

Padding – Individual Sides

CSS has properties for specifying the padding for each side of an element:

  • padding-top
  • padding-right
  • padding-bottom
  • padding-left

All the padding properties can have the following values:

  • length – specifies a padding in px, pt, cm, etc.
  • % – specifies a padding in % of the width of the containing element
  • inherit – specifies that the padding should be inherited from the parent element

Note: Negative values are not allowed.

The following example sets different padding for all four sides of a <div> element:

Example

div {
padding-top: 50px;
padding-right: 30px;
padding-bottom: 50px;
padding-left: 80px;
}

Padding – Shorthand Property

To shorten the code, it is possible to specify all the padding properties in one property.

The padding property is a shorthand property for the following individual padding properties:

  • padding-top
  • padding-right
  • padding-bottom
  • padding-left

So, here is how it works:

If the padding property has four values:

  • padding: 25px 50px 75px 100px;
    • top padding is 25px
    • right padding is 50px
    • bottom padding is 75px
    • left padding is 100px

Example

div {
padding: 25px 50px 75px 100px;
}

If the padding property has three values:

  • padding: 25px 50px 75px;
    • top padding is 25px
    • right and left paddings are 50px
    • bottom padding is 75px

Example

div {
padding: 25px 50px 75px;
}

If the padding property has two values:

  • padding: 25px 50px;
    • top and bottom paddings are 25px
    • right and left paddings are 50px

Example

div {
padding: 25px 50px;
}

If the padding property has one value:

  • padding: 25px;
    • all four paddings are 25px

Example

div {
padding: 25px;
}

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