What are CSS Resets?

March 11th, 2008 by Nikhil

A CSS Reset is/are CSS to set a number of element styles to a specific baseline that creates consistency across various browsers.

We all  have been the through the nightmares of writing cross-browser CSS’s.  So when we start writing our CSS , It is a practice to reset it first to remove/reset any cross browser inconsistencies.  CSS Resets , are simple few lines of CSS that you begin your CSS with , giving you a clean base  to start building your  upon.

The CSS resets that I normally tend to use looks like this

body, div, dl, dt, dd, ul, ol, li, h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6, pre, form, fieldset, input, textarea, p, blockquote, th, td {
html {font-size: 76%;}
table {
fieldset, img {

ol, ul {

h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6 {

Reset the browser font size

Also note the reset that has been applied to browser font size in the following line …

html {font-size: 76%;}

The above CSS resets the browser font size to 10 pixels, and this makes it possible to work with relative font sizes (which is every important from a WAI compliance prespective)
For e.g., in the following definition, font-size in a span is set to 10 pixels and that in the paragarph is set to 14 pixels…

span {font-size: 1em;}
p {font-size: 1.4em;}

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One Response to “What are CSS Resets?”

  1. Re-Cycling CSS : A Look At CSS Frameworks | Expressing IT Says:

    [...] ( CSS Resets) : Whether you use a framework or write your own , you must provide CSS Resets  [What are CSS Resets?], as they reduce or sometimes  eliminate  visual inconsistencies that  occur between various [...]

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