Bulma vs Pure.css

When it comes to CSS frameworks, developers have a multitude of options to choose from, each offering its own set of features, benefits, and design philosophies. Two notable frameworks that often come up in discussions are Bulma and Pure.css. In this article, we will delve deep into the world of these two frameworks, comparing them on various fronts to help you decide which one might be the best fit for your project.

What is Bulma?

Bulma is a modern CSS framework based on Flexbox, providing a rich set of responsive, mobile-first components and utilities. It’s known for its clean syntax and easy-to-understand documentation, making it a popular choice for developers looking to build intuitive and flexible user interfaces.

Popular Third-Party Add-ons for Bulma

  • Bulmaswatch: A collection of free themes for Bulma.
  • Buefy: Lightweight UI components for Vue.js based on Bulma.

Code Sample for Bulma

<!DOCTYPE html>
  <link rel="stylesheet" href="https://cdnjs.cloudflare.com/ajax/libs/bulma/0.9.3/css/bulma.min.css">
  <title>Bulma Sample</title>
  <section class="section">
    <div class="container">
      <h1 class="title">Hello World</h1>
      <p class="subtitle">
        My first website with <strong>Bulma</strong>!

What is Pure.css?

Pure.css, often referred to as Pure, is a minimalistic CSS framework developed by Yahoo. It’s designed to be small and lightweight, ensuring that the styles are not overly prescriptive. This allows developers to create fast-loading pages while maintaining the flexibility to build custom designs on top of Pure.css.

Popular Third-Party Add-ons for Pure.css

  • Pure.css Layouts: Pre-built layouts to help you get started with Pure.css.
  • Pure.css UI Kit: A set of commonly used UI elements styled with Pure.css.

Code Sample for Pure.css

<!DOCTYPE html>
  <link rel="stylesheet" href="https://cdnjs.cloudflare.com/ajax/libs/pure/2.0.6/pure-min.css">
  <title>Pure.css Sample</title>
  <div class="pure-g">
    <div class="pure-u-1 pure-u-md-1-2 pure-u-lg-1-4">
      <h1>Hello World</h1>
      <p>This is a website with Pure.css!</p>

Design and Usability

Bulma Design Features

Bulma stands out with its modern design features. It provides a comprehensive set of components that are aesthetically pleasing and functional out of the box. The use of Flexbox ensures that layout management is flexible and efficient, making it easy to create complex designs with minimal effort.

Pure.css Design Features

Pure.css takes a different approach by offering a bare-bones set of CSS modules. It doesn’t impose much styling, which gives developers the freedom to build their designs from scratch. This makes Pure.css an excellent choice for projects that require a high level of customization without the weight of unnecessary styles.

Responsiveness and Mobile-First Approach

Both frameworks are responsive and follow a mobile-first design philosophy. However, the way they handle responsiveness differs.

Bulma Responsiveness

Bulma is built with responsiveness in mind, utilizing Flexbox to create a grid system that adjusts to different screen sizes. It includes predefined classes for handling mobile, tablet, and desktop layouts, making it very straightforward to create a responsive design.

Pure.css Responsiveness

Pure.css also provides a responsive grid system, but it is more minimalistic compared to Bulma. It gives you the necessary tools to create a responsive design but expects you to write more custom CSS to achieve complex responsive behaviors.

Customization and Flexibility

When choosing a CSS framework, the ability to customize it to fit the needs of your project is crucial. Both Bulma and Pure.css offer customization options but in different capacities.

Bulma Customization

Bulma is highly customizable through Sass variables, mixins, and functions. You can easily change the default styles, colors, and sizes to match your brand or design requirements. Bulma’s extensive documentation provides clear guidance on how to customize the framework.

Pure.css Customization

Pure.css is designed to be customized. Since it doesn’t come with an extensive set of pre-styled components, you’re encouraged to write your own styles on top of Pure.css’s base. This can be both a pro and a con, depending on how much control you want over the styling and how much time you’re willing to invest in writing CSS.

Browser Support

Bulma Browser Support

Bulma supports all modern browsers, including recent versions of Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and Edge. However, since it relies on Flexbox, it does not support older browsers like Internet Explorer.

Pure.css Browser Support

Pure.css aims to be as compatible as possible with a wide range of browsers, including older ones. It provides graceful degradation for older versions of Internet Explorer, making it a good choice for projects where legacy browser support is important.

In the next section, we will continue our in-depth comparison by looking into the community and support, performance and load times, and real-world usage scenarios for both Bulma and Pure.css. Stay tuned for more insights that will help you make an informed decision between these two CSS frameworks.

Community and Support

The community around a CSS framework can be a vital factor in its adoption and ongoing development. A strong community provides a wealth of resources, including third-party add-ons, community support, and frequent updates.

Bulma Community

Bulma boasts a vibrant community with a substantial following on platforms like GitHub and Twitter. There is an active discourse around the framework, and it is continuously being improved with contributions from developers worldwide. The community has created numerous resources, such as themes, templates, and extensions that can help accelerate development.

Pure.css Community

Pure.css, while not as large as some other communities, still maintains a dedicated base of users. Being a project initiated by Yahoo, it has a level of credibility and professionalism that is respected in the industry. The community might be smaller, but it is still possible to find support and resources online.

Performance and Load Times

Performance is a crucial aspect of any web project, and the size of your CSS framework can have a significant impact on your site’s load times.

Bulma Performance

Bulma is a bit heavier than Pure.css due to its more extensive set of features and styles. However, it is still relatively lightweight compared to other comprehensive frameworks. The use of modern CSS features like Flexbox ensures that the performance is optimized, and developers can further reduce the footprint by only importing the components they need.

Pure.css Performance

Pure.css is known for its minimalistic approach, which translates to excellent performance and fast load times. The total size of Pure.css is very small, making it ideal for projects where speed is a priority. This can be particularly beneficial for mobile users or in areas with slow internet connections.

Real-World Usage Scenarios

Different projects might call for different frameworks, depending on the specific needs and goals of the project.

When to Use Bulma

Bulma is well-suited for projects where developers are looking for a modern, stylish design right out of the box. It is ideal for rapid prototyping and building responsive web applications that require a strong, flexible grid system. Bulma’s extensive component library can significantly speed up the development process.

When to Use Pure.css

Pure.css is the better choice for projects that prioritize performance and require a lightweight starting point without much pre-defined styling. It is perfect for websites where a unique, custom design is needed, and the developer is willing to write more CSS. Pure.css can also serve as a solid foundation for creating web applications that need to support older browsers.


Both Bulma and Pure.css offer unique benefits and can be the right choice depending on the project requirements. Bulma provides a rich set of pre-styled components and a Flexbox-based grid system, making it a great choice for developers who want to build something quickly without sacrificing design or responsiveness. On the other hand, Pure.css is minimalistic and unopinionated, offering a lightweight foundation for those who prefer to craft their styles and prioritize performance.

When choosing between Bulma and Pure.css, consider the following factors:

  • Design Needs: Do you need a framework with a lot of built-in components and styles, or do you prefer to create your own?
  • Performance: Is the size of the framework a concern for your project’s performance?
  • Customization: How much control do you want over the styling of your application?
  • Browser Support: Do you need to support older browsers like Internet Explorer?
  • Community Resources: Are you looking for a framework with a large community and plenty of third-party resources?

By carefully evaluating these aspects, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your project goals. Whether you choose Bulma for its feature-rich environment or Pure.css for its simplicity and speed, both frameworks can help you build beautiful, responsive websites.

More Bulma Comparisons


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