Head-to-Head: Emotion vs Tailwind CSS Analysis


v11.11.2(4 months ago)

This package is actively maintained.Types definitions are bundled with the npm packageNumber of direct dependencies: 5Monthly npm downloads

@emotion/css is a popular CSS-in-JS library that allows developers to write styles in JavaScript code. It provides a simple and intuitive API for styling React components, giving you complete control over how your styles are defined and applied. Additionally, it supports a wide range of CSS features and allows you to use custom CSS properties and variables. With its powerful composition features, @emotion/css enables developers to easily create reusable style components that can be shared across multiple projects.

Alternatives: styled-components, css-modules, jss

Tags: css-in-jsreactlibraryperformancecustom-css-properties


v3.3.3(3 months ago)

This package is actively maintained.Types definitions are bundled with the npm packageNumber of direct dependencies: 22Monthly npm downloads

Tailwind CSS is a utility-first CSS framework. It provides a comprehensive set of pre-defined CSS styles that can be combined to create custom designs while maintaining a consistent and cohesive look and feel. Its atomic design approach, using small and reusable classes, offers a quick way to build responsive user interfaces. Unlike traditional CSS frameworks, Tailwind does not impose any design decisions, allowing you to focus on your content and design needs.

Alternatives: bootstrap, foundation, semantic-ui

Tags: css-frameworkutility-cssresponsive-designatomic-design



@emotion/css and Tailwind CSS are both popular npm packages in the front-end development community. Tailwind CSS has gained a lot of popularity in recent years due to its utility-based approach, while @emotion/css is known for its powerful CSS-in-JS capabilities.

CSS-in-JS vs Utility-based

@emotion/css is a CSS-in-JS solution that allows you to write CSS styles in JavaScript code. It offers a wide range of features and benefits like scoped styles, dynamic styles, and prop-based styles. Tailwind CSS, on the other hand, follows a utility-based approach, providing a set of pre-defined utility classes that can be used directly in HTML or JSX. It offers a large number of utility classes to quickly build user interfaces.


Tailwind CSS has a highly scalable architecture due to its utility-based approach. It allows you to build scalable and maintainable CSS by reusing utility classes. On the other hand, @emotion/css provides more flexibility and is suitable for smaller to medium-sized projects where fine-grained control over component-level styling is required.

Developer Experience

@emotion/css provides a great developer experience for those who prefer writing CSS-in-JS. It offers strong tooling support, including IDE integrations and syntax highlighting. Tailwind CSS has a different developer experience with its utility class approach. It provides a rapid development experience by allowing developers to compose styles using utility classes without needing to write custom CSS.


Both packages offer customization options, but in different ways. @emotion/css allows you to define custom CSS styles within JavaScript, giving you full control over styling. Tailwind CSS, on the other hand, provides extensive customization through configuration files and utility class overrides. It allows you to customize colors, spacing, breakpoints, and more.


In terms of performance, @emotion/css has a runtime cost since it generates and injects styles dynamically. This can impact the initial load time of the application. Tailwind CSS, being a static utility-based CSS framework, does not have runtime overhead. However, it may generate larger CSS files as all utility classes are included, which can impact the overall bundle size.