Quick start with BEM methodology

Abdelfattah Atef
May 8, 2018 · 2 min read

There are a lot of methodologies like BEM, SMACSS & OOCSS that we can use them to reduce the CSS footprint, organize cooperation among programmers and maintain large CSS codebases. We find these methodologies are used in large projects like Twitter and Facebook, but other projects often grow into some “Huge CSS file” state pretty quickly.

for sure, no matter which methodology you should use anyway you will benefit from the advantages of more structured CSS and UI.

Now let’s take a look about what is BEM?

it stands for Block, Element and Modifier


Standalone entity that is meaningful on its own.

Examples — panel, container, form


A part of a block that has no standalone meaning and is semantically tied to its block.

Examples — panel header, container title, form input

and to use element you should use this syntax blockName__elementName


A flag on a block or element. Use them to change styles or behavior.

Examples — highlighted , disabled

and to use modifier you should use this syntax blockName--modifierName or elementName--modifierName

Basic Example.

now we need to create a panel using HTML, SASS and BEM methdology

like you see in the above example we have a block and its name is panel also there are some elements like panel__header , panel__body and panel__footer , also we have a modifier panel--primary

BEM methodology benefits…

1- Structure

BEM methodology gives your CSS code a solid structure that remains simple and easy to understand.

2- Avoid descendant selector

The descendant selector is very costly, as the browser must check for a match with every descendant element. On a complex web page, this can result in thousands and thousands (perhaps even more) of descendant selector searches. It is so expensive because the relationship isn’t restricted to parent and child. As such, I prefer to avoid it whenever possible.

3- Modularity

Block styles are never dependent on other elements on a page, so you will never experience problems from cascading.

You also get the ability to transfer blocks from your finished projects to new ones.

4- Reusability

Composing independent blocks in different ways, and reusing them intelligently, reduces the amount of CSS code that you will have to maintain.

With a set of style guidelines in place, you can build a library of blocks, making your CSS super effective.

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store