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CSS box-shadow Property

The box-shadow property is used to add shadow effects around an element.

A box shadow is described by X and Y offsets relative to the element, blur and spread radii, and color.

You can specify multiple effects separated by commas.

CSS Demo: box-shadow

box-shadow: 10px 5px red;
box-shadow: 10px 5px 20px green;
box-shadow: 10px 5px 20px 4px blue;
box-shadow: 0 1px 16px 0 rgba(0, 0, 0, .6), 0 6px 15px 0 rgba(0, 0, 0, .19);
box-shadow: inset 10px 5px 5px gray;
This is a box with a box-shadow around it

Specify box-shadow using:

  • Two, three, or four length values
    • If only two values are given, they are interpreted as offset-x offset-y values
    • If a third value is given, it is interpreted as a blur-radius
    • If a fourth value is given, it is interpreted as a spread-radius
  • Optionally, a color value

Technical Details

Default value "none"
Applies to all elements
Inherited no
Computed value as specified
Animatable yes See animatable properties. Demo
Version CSS3
JavaScript syntax object.style.boxShadow = "4px 4px 12px coral" Demo

CSS Syntax:

box-shadow: offset-x offset-y blur spread color|none|inset|initial|inherit;


The following example shows how to use box-shadow property:

Run code

You can use the inset keyword to apply the shadow inside of the element's box. Inset shadows are drawn inside the border, above the background, but below content.

Run code

Adding box-shadow on mouse hover:

Run code

An example of using the box-shadow property to create cards:

Run code

Browser compatibility

The numbers in the table specify the first browser version that fully supports the box-shadow property.

Numbers followed by -webkit- and -moz- specify the first version that worked with a vendor prefix.

box-shadow 10
4 -webkit-
3.5 -moz-
10.5 5.1
3.1 -webkit-

Property Values

The following table describes the values of box-shadow property:

Value Description
none No shadow will be displayed (This is default)
offset-x The horizontal offset of the shadow. A positive value puts the shadow on the right side of the box, a negative value puts the shadow on the left side of the box
offset-y The vertical offset of the shadow. A positive value puts the shadow below the box, a negative value puts the shadow above the box
blur Specifies blur radius. The larger this value, the bigger the blur, so the shadow becomes bigger and lighter. Negative values are not allowed. If not specified, it will be 0
spread Specifies spread radius. Positive values will cause the shadow to expand and grow bigger, negative values will cause the shadow to shrink. If not specified, it will be 0
color Specifies color of the shadow. If not specified, the color used depends on the browser - it is usually the value of the text color, but note that Safari currently paints a transparent shadow in this case.
inset Changes the shadow from an outer shadow to an inner shadow
initial Sets this property to its default value
inherit Inherits this property from its parent element

See also

CSS Shadows tutorial