Lightweight CSS Frameworks - A curated list

A curated list with Lightweight CSS Frameworks we can use to code small, fast-loading projects: Pico.CSS, Milligram, Pure CSS.

Lightweight CSS Frameworks - article provided by AppSeed.
Lightweight CSS Frameworks - A curated list

Using Bootstrap or other fully featured CSS Framework definitely is a good idea for complex projects with a lot of requirements, but for small, one-page projects using a Lightweight CSS Framework might be a better choice. A small CSS framework should be easier to learn by a pure developer and the end-product consumed by users that appreciate simplicity and loading speed. The list contains only frameworks that are actively supported and provide all basic features to code modern, responsive websites.

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  • πŸ‘‰ Pollen - a standards-driven alternative to Tailwind
  • πŸ‘‰ Pico.CSS - Minimal Design System
  • πŸ‘‰ FICTOAN - intuitive, modular CSS Framework
  • πŸ‘‰ Milligram - a minimalist CSS framework
  • πŸ‘‰ Fylgja - The modular highly customizable CSS framework
  • πŸ‘‰ Spectre - a modern framework for faster development
  • πŸ‘‰ Pure - responsive CSS modules
  • πŸ‘‰ Picnic CSS - a lightweight CSS for hackers πŸ€”

✨ Pollen

Pollen is a standards-driven alternative to Tailwind. A micro-library of CSS variables, it encourages consistency, maintainability, and rapid development. Use it from prototype to production, as a utility-first foundation for your own design system.

  • πŸ‘‰ Pollen - Github repo
  • πŸ‘‰ Pollen - documentation

Pollen's low-level variables can be used to build any design. They work anywhere and don't require a build step or class naming conventions. They're easy to extend and globally responsive, without introducing preprocessors or new syntax.

Pollen - Open-source minimalist template styled with Pollen CSS.
Lightweight CSS Framework - Pollen

✨Pico.CSS 🎁 7.7 kB

Pico might be a good starting point for a clean and lightweight design system - features:

Responsive Β - Elegant and consistent adaptatives spacings and typography on all devices. Light or Dark mode - Shipped with two beautiful color themes, automatically enabled according to the user preference. One CSS File - No dependencies, package manager, external files or JavaScript.

Pico.CSS - Open-source minimalist template styled with Pico.CSS.
Lightweight CSS Framework - Pico.CSS


Fictoan is an intuitive framework for designers looking to code interfaces that comes with a ready-to-use version for React.

Intuitive Naming - FICTOAN uses straight-forward and intuitive class names like .horizontal-center-this, .no-padding-left, .center-on-mobile and so on. Simple to use, and easy to recollect.

Development-ready - It comes with a set of pre-defined elements that you can simply drop into your project. Cards, sidebar menus, modal windows and more.

FICTOAN.CSS - The color scheme used by components.
Lightweight CSS Framework - FICTOAN.

✨ Milligram 🎁 2kb

Milligram provides a minimal setup of styles for a fast and clean starting point. Just it! Only 2kb gzipped! It's not about a UI framework. Specially designed for better performance and higher productivity with fewer properties to reset resulting in cleaner code.

Buttons styles with MIlligram CSS, a lightweight CSS framework.
Milligram CSS - Lightweight CSS Framework.

✨ Fylgja 🎁 ~15kb

Fylgja is a very flexible CSS framework, that offers the best features from other CSS frameworks, bundled into one framework. Use and extend it with your own CSS or extend your current stack with Fylgja.

  • πŸ‘‰ Fylgia - product website
  • πŸ‘‰ Fylgia - Github repository

Fylgja is CSS only, so you can integrate it in any JS environment, without having to worry it conflicts with something. Use Fylgja as a solid basis to build your own styles with minimal effort, thanks to SCSS and/or CSS Variables and CSS Utilities.

The official logo of Fylgia, a lightweight CSS framework.
Fylgia - Lightweight CSS Framework.

✨ Spectre.CSS 🎁 ~10kb

A Lightweight, Flexbox-based CSS Framework - Spectre only includes modern base styles, responsive layout system, CSS components and utilities, and it can be modified for your project with Sass/Scss compiler.

Buttons and pills styled with SPECTRE, a lightweight CSS framework.
SPECTRE - Lightweight CSS Framework.

✨ Pure CSS 🎁 3.7kb

Pure is ridiculously tiny. The entire set of modules clocks in at 3.7KB* minified and gzipped. Crafted with mobile devices in mind, it was important to us to keep our file sizes small, and every line of CSS was carefully considered. If you decide to only use a subset of these modules, you'll save even more bytes.

Pure.CSS - the official product banner.
Pure - Open-source, Lightweight CSS Framework

Picnic CSS 🎁 10kb

Picnic is completely modular so you can easily modify and test each part. Picnic is written in SCSS with many variables and classes (placeholders) to make it easy to extend.

Mobile-First CSS Framework - Picnic's mission is to be under 10kb of compressed CSS for a better and faster mobile load.

Picnic.CSS - Lightweight CSS Framework, the product banner.
Picnic CSS - Open-source CSS Framework. 

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