UIKit vs Milligram

When it comes to developing modern web applications, using a CSS framework can significantly speed up the development process and ensure a consistent look and feel across different browsers and devices. Among the plethora of frameworks available, UIKit and Milligram stand out for their unique features and approaches to styling. In this article, we will delve deep into the differences, advantages, and use cases for UIKit and Milligram, providing a comprehensive comparison to help you decide which framework best suits your project’s needs.

What is UIKit?

UIKit is a modular and lightweight front-end framework for developing fast and powerful web interfaces. It is designed to be comprehensive and provides a wide range of CSS, HTML, and JavaScript components that are ready to use and easy to customize.

Homepage: UIKit

Documentation: UIKit Documentation

Installation: UIKit Installation Guide

Popular Third-Party Addons for UIKit

  • UIkit3-icons: An extension that provides additional icons for UIKit.
  • UIkit3-rtl: A right-to-left language support addon for UIKit.

What is Milligram?

Milligram is a minimalist CSS framework designed for better performance and higher productivity with fewer properties to reset. It offers a simple and elegant approach to styling with a focus on typography and content readability.

Homepage: Milligram

Documentation: Milligram Documentation

Installation: Milligram Installation Guide

Popular Third-Party Addons for Milligram

  • Milligram-themes: A collection of themes for Milligram.
  • Milligram-extension-buttons: An addon that provides additional button styles for Milligram.

Comparing UIKit and Milligram

Design Philosophy

UIKit is designed to be a full-featured framework that offers a comprehensive set of components to build complex user interfaces. It includes a wide range of elements, such as navigation bars, modals, tooltips, and sliders, which are designed to work together harmoniously.

Milligram, on the other hand, adopts a minimalist approach. It focuses on the essentials, providing styles for typography, buttons, forms, and grids, without the overhead of additional JavaScript-based components. This makes Milligram a great choice for projects that require a lightweight and straightforward design.

Customization and Flexibility

UIKit allows for extensive customization through its Less and Sass preprocessor files. Developers can easily modify the default styles, create new themes, and extend the framework to fit their project’s specific needs.

Milligram is less flexible in terms of customization but is designed to be modified directly in CSS. This can be both a pro and a con, depending on your project’s requirements and your comfort level with CSS.

Code Samples

UIKit Sample – Navigation Bar

<nav class="uk-navbar-container" uk-navbar>
    <div class="uk-navbar-left">
        <a class="uk-navbar-item uk-logo" href="#">Logo</a>
        <ul class="uk-navbar-nav">
            <li class="uk-active"><a href="#">Active</a></li>
                <a href="#">Parent</a>
                <div class="uk-navbar-dropdown">
                    <ul class="uk-nav uk-navbar-dropdown-nav">
                        <li class="uk-active"><a href="#">Active</a></li>
                        <li><a href="#">Item</a></li>
                        <li><a href="#">Item</a></li>
            <li><a href="#">Item</a></li>

Milligram Sample – Typography and Button

<main class="wrapper">
    <h1>Heading 1</h1>
    <p>This is a paragraph. It is styled with Milligram for minimal styling out of the box.</p>
    <a class="button" href="#">Read More</a>

Browser Support

UIKit supports the latest versions of all major browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. It also provides limited support for Internet Explorer 11.

Milligram is also compatible with modern browsers but does not specify support for Internet Explorer. It’s important to consider browser compatibility based on your audience when choosing between UIKit and Milligram.

Community and Support

Both frameworks have active communities and are well-documented, making it easy for developers to get started and find support when needed. UIKit has a larger community and more third-party resources due to its broader feature set and longer presence in the market.

Milligram’s community is smaller but growing, and its simplicity can often mean less need for extensive support or additional resources.

Performance and Size

When it comes to performance, the size of the CSS framework plays a significant role, especially for projects where load time is critical. UIKit, with its extensive set of components and features, is larger in size compared to Milligram. This can potentially lead to longer loading times, which might affect user experience and SEO rankings.

Milligram, being a minimalist framework, boasts a small footprint. Its CSS file is remarkably lightweight, which is a substantial advantage for performance optimization. If you prioritize speed and are building a site where every kilobyte counts, Milligram could be the more suitable choice.

Learning Curve

For beginners or those who prefer to get up and running quickly, the learning curve is an important consideration. UIKit’s comprehensive nature means there is more to learn if you want to take full advantage of the framework. However, its well-structured documentation and community resources can ease the learning process.

Milligram, with its simplicity, has a gentler learning curve. Its limited set of components means there’s less to learn, allowing developers to integrate the framework into their projects with minimal effort.

Extensibility and Ecosystem

Frameworks with a rich set of extensions and plugins allow for greater extensibility, enabling developers to add new features without heavy lifting. UIKit has a vibrant ecosystem with many third-party addons and plugins that extend its capabilities. This can be particularly useful for complex projects that require functionality beyond the core UIKit components.

Milligram’s ecosystem is more modest, with fewer addons and plugins available. However, its simplicity makes it easy to integrate with other libraries or frameworks, providing flexibility in extending its capabilities.

Use Cases

Choosing between UIKit and Milligram often comes down to the specific needs of your project:

  • UIKit is well-suited for developers who need a comprehensive framework capable of building complex and feature-rich websites or applications. It’s ideal for projects where design consistency and a wide range of UI components are necessary.
  • Milligram is perfect for projects that require a lightweight, fast-loading framework. It’s an excellent choice for simple websites, landing pages, or when you want to avoid the overhead of larger frameworks.


Both UIKit and Milligram offer unique benefits, and the decision to use one over the other should be based on project requirements, performance considerations, and personal or team preferences. UIKit is the go-to for developers looking for a full-featured, customizable, and extendable framework, while Milligram appeals to those seeking simplicity, performance, and ease of use.

Additional Resources

To further explore UIKit and Milligram, here are some additional resources:

By understanding the strengths and limitations of UIKit and Milligram, you can make an informed decision that aligns with the goals of your web development project. Whether you prioritize a full set of features or a minimalist approach, both frameworks offer compelling options for modern web design.

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