Head-to-Head: Material Design Lite vs styled-components Analysis


v1.3.0(almost 7 years ago)

This package was last published over a year ago. It may not be actively maintained.Types definitions are provided via a separate npm package: @types/material-design-liteNumber of direct dependencies: 0Monthly npm downloads

Material Design Lite (MDL) is a lightweight front-end framework that implements Material Design, Google's design language. It offers a range of pre-built UI components and provides easy-to-follow guidelines for designing clean and modern web interfaces. With MDL, you can quickly and easily create responsive websites and web apps that are both visually appealing and easy to use.

Alternatives: Materialize, Vuetify, Bootstrap

Tags: front-endframeworkmaterial-designresponsivecustomizable


v6.0.8(21 days ago)

This package is actively maintained.Types definitions are bundled with the npm packageNumber of direct dependencies: 19Monthly npm downloads

Styled-components is a popular CSS-in-JS library for building user interfaces in modern web applications. It allows developers to define styles for their React components using JavaScript and provides simple, intuitive APIs for managing them.

Alternatives: emotion, jss, css-modules

Tags: reactcss-in-jsmodularperformancescalability



Material Design Lite (MDL) has been around for longer and has a considerable user base. It is widely used in many projects, especially those that follow the Material Design guidelines. Styled-Components, on the other hand, has gained significant popularity in recent years and has become a preferred choice for styling React components.

Styling Approach

Material Design Lite provides pre-defined CSS classes and styles based on the Material Design guidelines. It follows a more traditional approach to styling. Styled-Components, on the other hand, allows you to write CSS directly inside your JavaScript code using tagged template literals. It offers a more modern and component-based styling approach.


Material Design Lite provides a set of pre-defined styles and components, which can be a bit limiting if you want to customize your UI extensively. On the other hand, Styled-Components offers greater flexibility and allows you to create custom styles and components easily.

Integration with React

Material Design Lite was specifically built for integrating with React, making it easy to use in a React application. Styled-Components is also designed for React and offers seamless integration, providing a convenient way to style your React components.


Material Design Lite is a lightweight library, optimized for performance. It only includes the necessary styles and components needed for Material Design. Styled-Components has a slight performance overhead due to the dynamic nature of generating CSS at runtime. However, it performs well in most cases.

Developer Experience

Material Design Lite provides a conventional CSS-based styling approach, which may feel familiar to developers who have experience with CSS. Styled-Components offers a more modern and ergonomic developer experience, allowing you to write CSS directly in your component code, benefiting from features like prop-based styling and CSS-in-JS.