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Sara Cope on (Updated on )

The clear property is directly related to floats. If the element can fit horizontally in the space next to another element which is floated, it will. Unless you apply clear to that element in the same direction as the float. Then the element will move down below the floated element.

Here’s a simple example of a layout constructed with floats, which could be problematic for the footer:

But by clearing the footer element, the layout snaps into place:

#footer {
   clear: both;

In this case, clear: both; was used to ensure the footer clears past elements that are floated in either direction. But you can also clear either left or right in which case the element will move below elements that are floated that direction, but not the other.

A common way to clear floats is to apply a pseudo-element to a container element which clears the float. Learn more about that here.

Other Resources

Browser Support

The clear property works in all browsers.