css loader module for webpack

css loader for webpack

npm install css-loader --save-dev

Documentation: Using loaders

var css = require("css!./file.css");
// => returns css code from file.css, resolves imports and url(...) 

@import and url(...) are interpreted like require() and will be resolved by the css-loader. Good loaders for requiring your assets are the file-loader and the url-loader which you should specify in your config (see below).

To be compatible with existing css files:

  • url(image.png) => require("./image.png")
  • url(~module/image.png) => require("module/image.png")

This webpack config can load css files, embed small png images as Data Urls and jpg images as files.

module.exports = {
  module: {
    loaders: [
      { test: /\.css$/, loader: "style-loader!css-loader" },
      { test: /\.png$/, loader: "url-loader?limit=100000" },
      { test: /\.jpg$/, loader: "file-loader" }

For urls that start with a /, the default behavior is to not translate them:

  • url(/image.png) => url(/image.png)

If a root query parameter is set, however, it will be prepended to the url and then translated:

With a config like:

    loaders: [
      { test: /\.css$/, loader: "style-loader!css-loader?root=." },

The result is:

  • url(/image.png) => require("./image.png")

By default CSS exports all class names into a global selector scope. This is a feature which offer a local selector scope.

The syntax :local(.className) can be used to declare className in the local scope. The local identifiers are exported by the module.

It does it by replacing the selectors by unique identifiers. The choosen unique identifiers are exported by the module.


:local(.className{ background: red; }
:local(#someId{ background: green; }
:local(.className .subClass{ color: green; }
:local(#someId .subClass{ color: blue; }

is transformed to

._23_aKvs-b8bW2Vg3fwHozO { background: red; }
#_1j3LM6lKkKzRIt19ImYVnD { background: green; }
._23_aKvs-b8bW2Vg3fwHozO ._13LGdX8RMStbBE9w-t0gZ1 { color: green; }
#_1j3LM6lKkKzRIt19ImYVnD ._13LGdX8RMStbBE9w-t0gZ1 { color: blue; }

and the identifiers are exported:

exports.locals = {
  className: "_23_aKvs-b8bW2Vg3fwHozO",
  someId: "_1j3LM6lKkKzRIt19ImYVnD",
  subClass: "_13LGdX8RMStbBE9w-t0gZ1"

You can configure the generated ident with the localIdentName query parameter (default [hash:base64]). Example: css-loader?localIdentName=[path][name]---[local]---[hash:base64:5] for easier debugging.

Note: For prerendering with extract-text-webpack-plugin you should use css-loader/locals instead of style-loader!css-loader in the prerendering bundle. It doesn't embed CSS but only exports the identifier mappings.


When declaring a local class name you can inherit from another local class name.

  background: red;
  color: yellow;
  background: blue;

This doesn't result in any change to the CSS itself but exports multiple class names:

exports.locals = {
  className: "_23_aKvs-b8bW2Vg3fwHozO",
  subClass: "_13LGdX8RMStbBE9w-t0gZ1 _23_aKvs-b8bW2Vg3fwHozO"

and CSS is transformed to:

._23_aKvs-b8bW2Vg3fwHozO {
  background: red;
  color: yellow;
._13LGdX8RMStbBE9w-t0gZ1 {
  background: blue;


To import a local class name from another module:

:local(.continueButton):extends(.button from "library/button.css"{
  background: red;
:local(.nameEdit):extends(.edit.highlight from "./edit.css"{
  background: red;

To include SourceMaps set the sourceMap query param.


I. e. the extract-text-webpack-plugin can handle them.

The query parameter importLoaders allow to configure which loaders should be applied to @imported resources.

importLoaders (int): That many loaders after the css-loader are used to import resources.


// => imported resources are handled this way: 
// => imported resources are handled this way: 

By default the css-loader minimizes the css if specified by the module system.

In some cases the minification is destructive to the css, so you can provide some options to it. clean-css is used for minification and you find a list of options here. Just provide them as query parameter: i. e. require("css-loader?-restructuring&compatibility") to disable restructuring and enable compatibility mode.

You can also disable or enforce minification with the minimize query parameter.

require("css-loader?minimize!./file.css") (enforced)

require("css-loader?-minimize!./file.css") (disabled)

MIT (http://www.opensource.org/licenses/mit-license.php)