What is the Difference between HTML and CSS?

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You may have seen a lot of memes about HTML, CSS, HTML without CSS, HTML with CSS like this,

html and css meme

Yes, they are true. That's what a webpage also looks like with and without CSS.


HTML stands for HyperText Markup Language. It is a markup language and a fundamental building block for web applications. There is no logic involved in this like in programming languages. HTML consists of tags that define the structure of a document. Each tag serves a different purpose. For example, the <p> tag is used to surround the text in a paragraph, <h1>, <h2, ..., are used to define headings, <a> is used to define hyperlinks and so on.

Here are some main tags of HTML:

<html lang="en">
  <meta charset="UTF-8">


CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets. It describes how HTML elements should be displayed and are used to add styling to the HTML elements like colors, spacing, fonts, backgrounds, layouts, and many more. CSS consists of selectors and declarations. A selector can be an HTML tag, class, or id. Inside selectors we put declarations. Declarations are "property-value" pairs. The combination of a selector and declarations within the selector is called a "CSS rule".

css rule

Here's how CSS looks like:

body {
  background-color: #764af1;
  padding: 15px;

h1 {
  font-family: "Gill Sans", "Gill Sans MT", Calibri, "Trebuchet MS",
  color: rgba(10, 44, 52, 0.843);

p {
  font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;
  color: aliceblue;

So HTML is used to build a document, and on the other hand, CSS is used to style that document.

Differences between HTML and CSS

HTML is used to build the website.CSS is used to style the website.
It is a markup language because there is no logic involved.It is a design language because it is used to style the website.
We can't write HTML inside CSSWe can write CSS inside HTML (Inline or in a separate file)
Easy to learn again because there is no logic involved in this.Somewhat hard to learn compared to HTML
Used to define the structure of a webpageUsed to define the design of a webpage
File extension: .html or .htmFile extension: .css

Example for HTML without CSS and with CSS

This is what the Google homepage looks like with plain HTML code:

html without css

As you can see in the screenshot above, the website is very plain and unappealing. Let's make it attractive by adding styling with CSS.

This is how the same webpage appears after CSS has been added:

html with css

Our website is now more fascinating than it was before.

Which is Easier, CSS or HTML?

HTML is far more straightforward to learn and implement. There's nothing to be concerned about. On the other hand, CSS can be confusing and difficult to debug the styles when anything goes wrong or things don't perform as planned. However, if you've gained some good experience through building projects, CSS will be second nature to you.

Is CSS better than HTML?

HTML and CSS serve two completely different purposes. While HTML is used to define the structure of a webpage, CSS is for styling that webpage. So we can't compare both of them.

Can We Use CSS without HTML?

HTML is the fundamental building block for websites. CSS is like an addition to HTML, so clearly we can't use CSS without HTML.

Learn more about HTML and CSS


In this article,

  1. We got an idea of HTML and CSS.
  2. We studied the basic differences between HTML and CSS as well as how webpages seem without CSS.
  3. We found that HTML is easier than CSS.
  4. We also learned we couldn't use CSS without HTML.
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