Top 5 CSS Frameworks you should consider for your next website

12 minutes reading

Currently, over 30% of websites are based on WordPress. While the blogging platform is the most significant player on the market, it’s not too far-fetched to imagine that over half of all websites are actually built without the help of such platforms. Let’s call these custom websites since their design and functionality are created to fit the needs of certain businesses and are unique to them. Building a custom website can give you tremendous advantages over everyone else in your business niche since the code of the website and the design can be optimized to your specific needs and requirements.

On the other hand, a custom-made website may prove to be a challenge since it needs, for example, far more time and effort to complete. That is often something small businesses do not have. To build your own website that is in line with the today design standards, you will need to know HTML, CSS, and JavaScript as a bare minimum. While these are not too complicated to learn, it will still take you a significant amount of time to get proficient in the finer details of web designing.

But what if there was a way for you to use common design components out of the box without the need of designing? – Fortunately, there is and today we will give you a list of the top 5 CSS Frameworks you should consider for the front end of your website.

Image of a laptop with programming code

What is a CSS framework?

We already compared the top two PHP frameworks in detail, and if you missed this blog post, don’t hesitate to read it first. The main goal of the CSS framework is basically the same. It’s a library of commonly used design patterns and codes that make the developer’s job immensely easier. All of these patterns and solved problems are stored in ready-to-be-used classes. The main idea behind CSS frameworks is to significantly reduce the tedious, repetitive writing of code fragments that are already in use around your project. That is achieved thanks to different predefined HTML and CSS elements.

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Why do you need a CSS framework?

A CSS framework may prove quite helpful, even if you are a brilliant developer. Its most significant advantage is how much time it saves you. In a sense, it takes all repetitive coding and every aspect that is basically the same in each website (like the basic structure of a sidebar, header, etc.) and implements it directly to your website. Thus the whole project runs much faster. Moreover, it provides cross-browser compatibility, which solves a massive problem with testing all of your features on all major browsers. Naturally, this saves time and, more importantly, keeps you from doing one truly soul-crushing task.

Another great plus of using a CSS framework, regardless of your level of developing skills, is the structure it promotes. Without such structure, the CSS stylesheets usually become a nightmare, which can’t be fixed and can hardly be rearranged. Frameworks push you to keep your code up to the standards, which makes it easily readable, and any mistakes can be found and fixed much faster.

The best benefit of using a CSS framework, however, without any doubt, is the reduction of mistakes. Even the best developers make typos, and searching for them is time-consuming and frustrating. By using a CSS framework, you dismiss the chance of mistakes altogether.

In general, the CSS framework gives you many benefits and has hardly any downsides. It’s a lovely tool for developers to do their job quickly and efficiently and for business owners with some coding experience to create one excellent customized website with predefined user interface (UI) elements.

The Top 5 CSS Frameworks

Naturally, the market is full of CSS frameworks. Since choosing a framework is not as straightforward as selecting HostArmada as the best hosting provider for your website, we compiled a list of the five best CSS frameworks you should use for your development projects.

Bootstrap Logo

1. Bootstrap

Bootstrap is something of a legend in the developing community. It’s so widely used that nearly anyone had to work with it at one point or another. About 19.6% of all existing websites use Bootstrap, which makes up around 80% of the total CSS framework market. This is beyond impressive, and Bootstrap truly deserves all the attention.


Being the most famous and widely-used CSS framework is not the only benefit of Bootstrap. However, its popularity gives the framework a massive amount of developers who work to keep it up to date and add fresh additions to its library.
Moreover, Bootstrap is a dynamic pre-built bundle with endless components ready to be taken. Almost anything is supported by default, making it an outstanding gateway CSS framework for those new to the developing world.

Furthermore, you can customize Bootstrap quite effortlessly with SASS variables. This will cut the development time significantly as well as your work.

Being the most considerable CSS framework, Bootstrap is there for the long run. Many smaller frameworks die out as their authors cease to see potential in them and quit. In a sense, Bootstrap has already passed the most dangerous part of its life, and it’s fair to say it’s too big to fail now.


One of the few downsides of the framework is the constant use of the “!important” CSS rule, which makes the entire design a bit hard to change if you are new to the development profession. Naturally, veteran developers won’t find it as complex, but the whole idea that it puts you in a frame is a bit frustrating.

While its popularity most certainly is a blessing, it can also be a curse. Millions of websites use the same elements library, so it’s only natural for some of them to reappear. Thus many professional developers are starting to turn their backs on Bootstrap, as they prefer to have unique and highly distinguishable work.

Of course, being great comes at a price, and for Bootstrap, it’s the size. This is one of the heaviest frameworks on the market and can take a lot of space to include in your project.

Who is it for

Bootstrap should be your choice if you are new to front-end development and need a quick and easy way to write a customized UI. However, remember that your website won’t be as unique as the one you could do with other frameworks, and it will be quite a heavy addition to your project. So if you have some experience, you might find better opportunities elsewhere.


2. Bulma

If you don’t want to be like 20% of the internet and have the same elements as them, you might turn to Bulma. It’s an easy-to-use framework effortlessly integrated into your project and offers some unique components you can’t find elsewhere. Some might even call it a niche framework, but with over 143,830 websites using it, it’s definitely not that low-key anymore.


One of the best features of Bulma is the outstandingly simple syntax, making the framework’s learning curve pretty small. With its minimalistic design, one could easily be fooled that the look won’t be anything special. However, Bulma offers one of the most aesthetic CSS frameworks. The design is modern and straightforward, and you will get one mesmerizing website by default.

Furthermore, the entire framework is as if fresh out of the oven. For example, with Bulma creating responsive layouts is a piece of cake, as it’s one of the first flexbox-based frameworks.

Naturally, it’s easily customizable with SASS. In general, the entire framework is highly developer-friendly, with several perks dedicated to the end-user and the developers themselves. One of them is the naming conventions used by the framework, which are catchy and easy to remember.

Best of all, Bulma doesn’t have any JavaScript-based features, which makes it perfect for integrating with many JavaScript frameworks.


Bulma’s growing popularity may prove to be one of its downsides. Although it has some pretty unique styles, they are not that many. So naturally, although they are rather distinct, once everyone starts using them, they will get overused fast, and Bulma will get the same problem as Bootstrap – all websites will begin to look similar.

Moreover, even though it’s breathing in Bootstrap’s neck in most cases, the framework is still somewhat problematic regarding accessibility and other more advanced features.

Who is it for

This framework is again for new developers and veterans, as it’s pretty easy to use. It’s relatively unpopular, which gives its styles some uniqueness, and the design is almost divine. Naturally, there is much less support when it comes to problems, as fewer people use the framework. The community around it is still very new, so if you are a beginner, it’s best to skip this framework for your first few projects.

Foundation Logo

3. Foundation

Foundation was created to accommodate the needs of experienced developers who want total power but also enjoy all the benefits of using a framework. It is more than just a CSS framework. It’s an entire collection of libraries that allows you to customize your website and your emails as well.


Foundation allows you to create some genuinely inspiring CSS animation thanks to its Motion UI. Thanks to the vast library of effects and animations, your website can truly become a masterpiece.

Furthermore, all components of the framework lack a distinct style. Newcomers might perceive this as a downside, but experienced developers know this allows them to customize any element freely, creating truly unique websites. Moreover, the customization process is not that complicated, meaning that a developer can create breathtaking components in practically no time.

The most significant advantage of the Foundation framework is that it comes fully featured. This means the framework has built-in components for anything—navigation bars, containers of all types, and one extremely developer-friendly grid system. Moreover, the community around the framework and the development team have created various HTML templates that are free to use and accommodate almost any need.

The cherry on top is the framework’s email design capabilities, which allow you to integrate your website’s style into your email and create one genuinely spectacular email that will surely capture the reader’s attention.


One of the most significant drawbacks of the Foundation framework is its heavy reliance on JavaScript. Moreover, it uses jQuery, which is less than ideal, but even more, Zepto, which uses the same syntax as the former but leaves a smaller footprint. Zepto is hardly known in the developing community and is rarely used.

The other downside is that Foundation is truly only for the experts in the development field since the learning curve is extremely steep. However, designer freedom comes at a price; for Foundation, it’s knowledge.

Who is it for

Foundation, without a doubt, is for the genuine experts who look for freedom. The framework is hard to learn, but once you master it, you will create some of the best-looking websites on the entire internet. Furthermore, with its animation capabilities, all websites created with this framework become genuine art pieces.

Tailwind Logo

4. Tailwind CSS

Tailwind CSS is the best lightweight framework one can find on the market. With a motto such as “Most CSS Frameworks do too much,” one could imagine Tailwind CSS has few fancy features to brag about. However, the framework allows front-end developers to implement their unique style with little hassle and extremely fast. It can do so due to the lack of CSS coding and the heavy usage of utility classes. It’s every front-end developer’s wet dream.


As mentioned, Tailwind CSS heavily depends on powerful utility classes, which overtake most of the CSS coding functions. The method is also known as Atomic CSS. This is when classes describe precisely what an HTML element will look like. This reduces the developer’s workload immensely.

Moreover, just like with Foundation, Tailwind has absolutely no default design or stock components. Instead, it allows the developer to implement their styles, which they can reuse throughout the project. You can check some examples on the framework’s website if you are in search of some inspiration. You may even use them as a starting point.

The best part of Tailwind, however, is reserved for when you integrate it into your SASS or Post CSS project. This unlocks the framework’s features, which allow you to write highly effective CSS. Many describe it as CSS on steroids.


It has become evident that Tailwind is not a framework for beginners or anything less than experts. It’s pretty complex to use and even more so to learn. Since there are no templates and ready-to-use components, you need to know and understand everything about front-end technologies before using this framework. Even more so, you’ll need to learn the syntax to utilize this fantastic framework’s features fully.

Not only is using it complex, but the installation is as well. Although it can be added to your project just like any other framework, this won’t give you access to all its features. Moreover, you won’t have access to the compressed size, which is more than ten times smaller than the raw one. To enjoy all of Tailwind’s perks, you need to know how to use front-end build tools such as Webpack, Gulp, or others.

Who is it for

The framework is designed for true front-end artists who prefer to build everything independently. So naturally, they need to have the confidence to build all their components from scratch and know everything there is to know about front-end development. It’s a massive understatement to say that Tailwind is not for beginners. It’s complex and hard to learn. But on the other hand, it gives the developers unparalleled freedom and one genuinely effortless way to create outstanding websites.

Milligram Logo

5. Milligram

Milligram is more of a hidden gem in the CSS framework niche. Not many developers use it, but it has some unique features that those who do find pretty helpful. The framework is minimalistic because it offers a clean sheet as a start, and by design, it increases the developer’s performance and productivity.


Milligram gives an entirely new meaning to the term “lightweight framework.” It takes only 2KB when composed, which is inconceivably tiny. Moreover, it’s straightforward to install and set up, so it practically takes no time to choose the framework and start working on your project.

Although it comes without any styling, just like most frameworks designed for experts, Milligram is easy to learn. There are no properties you need to override if they don’t fit your design, and you have the freedom to implement your style entirely.


While not having a predetermined design is generally looked upon favorably by many front-end experts, it may be difficult for some developers with less experience. Moreover, the community is pretty small, so you are on your own if you get into trouble. However, due to its simplicity, Milligram rarely presents any issues.

Who is it for

The framework is ideal for people looking for freedom. Its simple yet pragmatic design allows you to freely design everything about your website while simultaneously getting a boost from the framework on your productivity and performance. It’s perfect for experts and beginners, but having a clear vision of how everything should look is mandatory.

So which one is the best?

If you ask our team what the best CSS framework is, we would probably agree that Bootstrap has all the features to make your front-end project significantly easier. You won’t need to change the predetermined styles if you are a beginner. If you are an expert, you can do it quickly. There is a slight learning curve, and 80% of people are rarely wrong about technology.

Still, if you are looking for a more uniquely-looking website, you can use Bulma, which is almost as good as Bootstrap, but as a bonus, its designs are still not overused.

If you are an expert and want all the freedom in the world, plus some outstanding animation opportunities, that Foundation should be your choice.

Tailwind CSS and Milligram, on the other hand, are for genuine artists who don’t need nor want any point of reference. The former is only for the true masters of front-end development, while beginners can use the latter.

However, if you are wondering what to download right now, Bootstrap is, without a doubt, the best choice. Just like HostArmada is the best choice for web hosting services. If you are creating your very first website, it’s best to secure the best hosting available in the market first. Take a look at our outstanding offers and let us help you choose the best package for your needs.