CSS Lists

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The CSS list properties allow you to:

  • Set different list item markers for ordered lists
  • Set different list item markers for unordered lists
  • Set an image as the list item marker


List

In HTML, there are two types of lists:

  • unordered lists - the list items are marked with bullets
  • ordered lists - the list items are marked with numbers or letters

With CSS, lists can be styled further, and images can be used as the list item marker.

Different List Item Markers

The type of list item marker is specified with the list-style-type property:

Example

ul.a {list-style-type: circle;}
ul.b {list-style-type: square;}

ol.c {list-style-type: upper-roman;}
ol.d {list-style-type: lower-alpha;}

Some of the property values are for unordered lists, and some for ordered lists.

Values for Unordered Lists

Value Description
none No marker
disc Default. The marker is a filled circle
circle The marker is a circle
square The marker is a square

Values for Ordered Lists

Value Description
armenian The marker is traditional Armenian numbering
decimal The marker is a number
decimal-leading-zero The marker is a number padded by initial zeros (01, 02, 03, etc.)
georgian The marker is traditional Georgian numbering (an, ban, gan, etc.)
lower-alpha The marker is lower-alpha (a, b, c, d, e, etc.)
lower-greek The marker is lower-greek (alpha, beta, gamma, etc.)
lower-latin The marker is lower-latin (a, b, c, d, e, etc.)
lower-roman The marker is lower-roman (i, ii, iii, iv, v, etc.)
upper-alpha The marker is upper-alpha (A, B, C, D, E, etc.) 
upper-latin The marker is upper-latin (A, B, C, D, E, etc.)
upper-roman The marker is upper-roman (I, II, III, IV, V, etc.)

Note: No versions of Internet Explorer (including IE8) support the property values "decimal-leading-zero", "lower-greek", "lower-latin", "upper-latin", "armenian", or "georgian" UNLESS a DOCTYPE is specified

An Image as The List Item Marker

To specify an image as the list item marker, use the list-style-image property:

Example

ul
{
list-style-image: url('../../images/image3.png');
}
Code it Online »

The example above does not display equally in all browsers. IE and Opera will display the image-marker a little bit higher than Firefox, Chrome, and Safari.

If you want the image-marker to be placed equally in all browsers, a crossbrowser solution is explained below.

Crossbrowser Solution

The Below example displays the image-marker equally in all browsers:

Example

ul
{
list-style-type: none;
padding: 0px;
margin: 0px;
}
li
{
background-image: url(../../images/image4.png);
background-repeat: no-repeat;
background-position: 0px 5px;
padding-left: 14px;
}
Code it Online »

Example explained:

  • For ul:
    • Set the list-style-type to none to remove the list item marker
    • Set both padding and margin to 0px (for cross-browser compatibility)
  • For li:
    • Set the URL of the image, and show it only once (no-repeat)
    • Position the image where you want it (left 0px and down 5px)
    • Position the text in the list with padding-left

List - Shorthand property

It is also possible to specify all the list properties in one, single property. This is called a shorthand property.

The shorthand property used for lists, is the list-style property:

Example

ul
{
list-style: square url("image2.png");
}
Code it Online »

When using the shorthand property, the order of the values are:

  • list-style-type
  • list-style-position (for a description, see the CSS properties table below)
  • list-style-image

It does not matter if one of the values above are missing, as long as the rest are in the specified order.


More Examples

All the different list-item markers for lists
This example demonstrates all the different list-item markers in CSS.

All CSS List Properties

The number in the "CSS" column indicates in which CSS version the property is defined (CSS1 or CSS2).

Property Description Values CSS
list-style Sets all the properties for a list in one declaration list-style-type
list-style-position
list-style-image
inherit
1
list-style-image Specifies an image as the list-item marker URL
none
inherit
1
list-style-position Specifies if the list-item markers should appear inside or outside the content flow inside
outside
inherit
1
list-style-type Specifies the type of list-item marker none
disc
circle
square
decimal
decimal-leading-zero
armenian
georgian
lower-alpha
upper-alpha
lower-greek
lower-latin
upper-latin
lower-roman
upper-roman
inherit
1

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