CSS resize

The resize property determines how an element can be resized by the user, if at all.

You can specify whether the user can resize the element horizontally, vertically, both, or not at all.

The resize property is not to be confused with the overflow property, which allows you to specify what should happen when an element's contents are too large to fit inside the box. In this case you can specify that the box should grow scrollbars, hide the content, or that the content should not be clipped (i.e. that it should appear outside the box). However, that is not the same as the resize property, which allows the user to resize the box.

The resize property does not apply to blocks where the overflow property is set to visible. Given that this is the default value for that property, you will need to make sure that overflow is set to something other than visible (such as scroll or auto).


Possible Values

The user can't resize the element. The browser/user agent provides no mechanism to allow the user to do this.
The user can resize both the height and width of the element.
The user can resize the width of the element.
The user can resize the height of the element.

In addition, all CSS properties also accept the following CSS-wide keyword values as the sole component of their property value:

Represents the value specified as the property's initial value.
Represents the computed value of the property on the element's parent.
This value acts as either inherit or initial, depending on whether the property is inherited or not. In other words, it sets all properties to their parent value if they are inheritable or to their initial value if not inheritable.

Basic Property Information

Initial Value
Applies To
All elements where the overflow property is not set to visible.

Example Code

Basic CSS

Working Example within an HTML Document

Try it

CSS Specifications

Browser Support

The following table provided by Caniuse.com shows the level of browser support for this feature.

Vendor Prefixes

For maximum browser compatibility many web developers add browser-specific properties by using extensions such as -webkit- for Safari, Google Chrome, and Opera (newer versions), -ms- for Internet Explorer, -moz- for Firefox, -o- for older versions of Opera etc. As with any CSS property, if a browser doesn't support a proprietary extension, it will simply ignore it.

This practice is not recommended by the W3C, however in many cases, the only way you can test a property is to include the CSS extension that is compatible with your browser.

The major browser manufacturers generally strive to adhere to the W3C specifications, and when they support a non-prefixed property, they typically remove the prefixed version. Also, W3C advises vendors to remove their prefixes for properties that reach Candidate Recommendation status.

Many developers use Autoprefixer, which is a postprocessor for CSS. Autoprefixer automatically adds vendor prefixes to your CSS so that you don't need to. It also removes old, unnecessary prefixes from your CSS.

You can also use Autoprefixer with preprocessors such as Less and Sass.