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Home Forums CSS Justify/Equally Spread List Items?

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    Andy Howells

    Hi all,

    I’m trying to figure a way to equally space list items in a horizontal nav. (Link below to dev site).

    At the moment they have equal widths of 12.5% – which is great for the LI element and text is centered horizontally. So if I was to draw a box/add a background it would look fine.

    However, if you look at the link below, you can see the undesired effect is that because they have no background/spacers they all look out of space/misaligned.

    Anyone have any tips on how to cure this problem without adding a box/background and to make them appear to be justified evenly? I’m having trouble thinking of a fix.

    Note that the design is responsive.

    Just for reference the menu I mean is the subnavigation under the slideshow area that has “Anti Aging” and “Body” in it.

    Link to draft site

    Cheers in advance!


    Not much you can do about that…the links are different lengths. Other than changing the order of the list to see if you can even it out, I can’t see any way around it.


    I would suggest using flexbox to make sure all spacing is equal?


    @andy_unleash : yea, I was a bit too quick with my comment. It’s too experimental it seems, so better not use it.

    If I would have this issue myself, I would just give each LI a specific width though, so that it’s spaced exactly the way I want to.
    Sure, some people would consider it a cop-out, but… would give me the result I’d be looking for. And you don’t have to cater to the people who insist on having a “cleverer” solution.


    Unless you are intrinsically opposed to them, perhaps a very light right/left border.

    I just used ‘lightgrey’ but you could go lighter.


    Or you could remove the widths from the LI’s and just give them all a padding of 26 or 27 pixels left/right. Problem is that browsers render it a little differently so it might wrap to the next line. In that case, set it to 25 pixels and center the UL a little more precise.


    Using table and table-cell for the display property can get the job done fairly well. Support varies for it so I’d test it and plan some browser contingencies if you use it.

    Chris Coyier

    Or maybe just make the list items `display: inline;` and `text-align: center’` the UL. using padding where appropriate to space out.

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