When it comes to coding, a good code editor is a must-have tool for most developers. Since CSS is highly popular among web developers, CSS text editors are available in plentiful and you can pick the one that best suits your needs.
In this article, I will be enlisting some of the best CSS text editors that you can choose from. Don’t miss some of my favorite tools for clean code at the bottom, too.
Stylizer is a CSS text editor that comes with live preview in multiple web browsers as well as realtime editing of code.
It supports both Windows and Mac platforms, and is available free of charge for 14 days and then it is $79 for a full license.
Espresso is available only for Mac users, and costs $75 for a single license. You can try the limited time-period demo before purchasing.
4. Rapid CSS
Rapid CSS is a code editor with features such as syntax highlight, instant preview, CSS code checker and inspector, etc. It also supports direct FTP and SFTP upload to your web server.
Rapid CSS costs $29.95 for a single licence, and also offers a free trial. It is available only for Windows users.
5. Simple CSS
Simple CSS lives true to its name — it is a simple and no-nonsense CSS text editor that lets you take control of your code. If you are looking for sophisticated features and support for multiple languages, Simple CSS is not meant for you. Instead, if you are looking for a code editor that simply lets you create, manage, import and export your CSS projects, Simple CSS is the way to go.
Simple CSS is available free of charge, and runs on both Windows and Mac platforms.
6. Coda 2
Coda 2 is more of a coding application and less of a slim editor. It provides you with live previews of code, and supports CSS well. That said, if you need more features, say remote FTP uploads, additional color options, support for Foundation framework by ZURB, you can extend the functionality of Coda 2 by means of plugins.
Coda 2 runs only on Mac and costs $99 for a single user license.
7. Style Master
Style Master is a simple CSS editor with a WYSIWYG experience. It features live previews, FTP support and lets you work with PHP, ASP.NET, Ruby and other dynamic sites.
Style Master supports both Windows and Mac machines, and is available for $59.99 for a single license. You can try the 30-day demo before purchasing.
8. EngInSite CSS Editor
EngInSite CSS Editor comes with instant code previews, syntax validator as well as auto-complete tools for CSS editing. It is a very lightweight editor, and you can run it on any machine — even Windows 98. It is probably not the most feature-rich editor out there, but if you are looking for a low cholesterol code editor, EngInSite CSS Editor might be of use for you.
EngInSite CSS Editor is available free of cost and runs on Windows.
9. Firebug by Firefox (with CSS Usage)
Firebug is a browser extension that works only with Mozilla Firefox. It gives you a wealth of developer-friendly resources, and lets you inspect, edit, debug or monitor code live on the page. You can use it to tweak and modify CSS metrics.
When using Firebug for CSS editing, I personally prefer adding the CSS Usage addon, that allows you to scan multiple pages of your site to see which CSS rules are actually being used. You can also try the Web Developer addon that, among other things, lets you disable certain CSS stylesheets during development, and enable them later on.
Firebug is available free of cost, though you are going to need Firefox web browser to use it.
Tools & Webapps for Clean CSS Code
There are a number of free online tools that can help you to create and maintain effective CSS code. These tools include validators, optimizers, and compressors, to name a few. They can all help you maintain clean CSS code across every project big or small.
Try out a few of these tools and see how they work to maintain efficient CSS stylesheets.
CSS Tidy is an open source CSS parser and optimizer from SourceForge. It is available as an executable file for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X. CSS Tidy is often able to achieve a compression ration of 30% or more.
In addition to compression, CSS Tidy can also format CSS code for higher browser compatibility.
Clean CSS is another simple online tool that gives you a few options for formatting and optimizing CSS. Clean CSS gives you easy control over how much you want it to do. It is also available in German and French.
Insert the URL of your style sheet and CSSCheck will quickly run a report that gives you some feedback on the code. It will give warnings for items that may cause problems.
The CSS Analyzer from Juicy Studio allows you to validate your CSS code, and it also tests the color contrasts and the units of measurement. Just enter the URL of your style sheet and it will produce the report.
CSS Compressor is another tool for reducing the file size of style sheets. Unlike some of the other tools, it offers the option to upload a file from your computer in addition to the option of entering a URL.
The CSS Optimizer from Flumpcakes gives you several options and provides the save features as many of the other optimizers on this list.
CSS Drive provides a CSS Compressor with options for “Light”, “Normal”, or “Super Compact.”
You simply paste your code into the page and it does the work.
CSS SuperScrub offers less features and options than some of the other tools, but it still functions essentially the same. It works to reduce the size and complexity of the file by eliminating unnecessary elements and organizing the file.
Another option for compressing your CSS files, the Robson CSS Compressor offers many of the same features as the other choices listed here, but it is still in development, so “it may not work correctly.”
The W3C offers a free validator for CSS files. Simply enter the URL and see how your style sheet does.
- CSS Compressor from Lottery Post
- PHP CSS Compressor from iBloom Studios
- CSS Toolbox (Validator, Formatter, Compressor) from Blumentals Software
- CSS Compressor from PHPinsider.com
- CSS Optimizer from mabblog.com
- Code Beautifier (Based on CSS Tidy)
- Format CSS
- CSS Formatter and Optimizer from CSS Portal
- CSS Validator Firefox Add-On
That brings us to the end of this roundup. What CSS tools do you use? Know any that I missed? Share it with us in the comments below!