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Color Palettes in Bulma

Input 1 color, Receive dozens of different shades for that color

Bulma comes with 7 primary colors:


Bulma will automatically generate a collection of CSS variables for each of those colors. These sets of variables act as a color palette you can use to play with different shades of a same color.

For example, by setting the primary color with $primary: hsl(171, 100%, 41%), Bulma will generate the following CSS variables:

  • --bulma-primary
  • --bulma-primary-rgb if you want to create your own RGBA shade: rgba(var(--bulma-primary-rgb), 0.5)
  • --bulma-primary-h equal to the primary hue
  • --bulma-primary-s equal to the primary saturation
  • --bulma-primary-l equal to the primary lightness
  • --bulma-primary-base (equal to --bulma-primary)
  • --bulma-primary-invert which is a color that will look decent on the primary color (in a foreground/background combination)
  • --bulma-primary-light which is the primary color at 90% lightness
  • --bulma-primary-light-invert which is a color that looks good on the -light version
  • --bulma-primary-dark which is the primary color at 20% lightness
  • --bulma-primary-dark-invert which is a color that looks good on the -dark version
  • --bulma-primary-soft which is a light color in light mode, and a dark color in dark mode
  • --bulma-primary-bold which is a dark color in light mode, and a light color in dark mode
  • --bulma-primary-soft-invert which is the same as the bold version
  • --bulma-primary-bold-invert which is the same as the soft version
  • --bulma-primary-on-scheme which is a color that looks good on the scheme-main color (which by default is white, and is used as the page’s background color)

Here is what they look like:

--bulma-primary The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog
--bulma-primary-invert The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog
--bulma-primary-light The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog
--bulma-primary-light-invert The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog
--bulma-primary-dark The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog
--bulma-primary-dark-invert The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog
--bulma-primary-soft The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog
--bulma-primary-bold The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog
--bulma-primary-on-scheme The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog

Soft and Bold colors

Because Bulma now has a Dark Mode, it comes with a new color concept: soft and bold colors.

A soft color is a shade of a color that has little contrast with the background. It’s a muted, faint shade of that color.

In light mode, this means that a soft color will be light as well. It’s ideal of backgrounds:

--bulma-primary-soft as background The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog

On the other hand, the bold color has a stark contrast with the background. It’s a strong, distinct shade of that color.

In light mode, this means that a bold color will be dark. It’s ideal of text colors:

--bulma-primary-bold as text color The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog

The best use of these colors is to combine them: the soft color as background, the bold color as foreground:

--bulma-primary-soft as background
--bulma-primary-bold as foreground
The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog

Automatic switching when going into Dark Mode

If you use switch to between light mode and dark mode, you will notice that the soft and bold colors will swap. That way, you don’t need to update your CSS classes to keep a decent design.

System Light Mode Dark Mode
The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog

Invert colors

The purpose of -invert colors is to combine them with their base counterparts. For example, if you use primary-light as the background color, you can use primary-light-invert as the foreground color:

Background --bulma-primary bulma-primary-invert on bulma-primary
Foreground --bulma-primary-invert
Background --bulma-primary-light bulma-primary-light-invert on bulma-primary-light
Foreground --bulma-primary-light-invert
Background --bulma-primary-dark bulma-primary-dark-invert on bulma-primary-dark
Foreground --bulma-primary-dark-invert

21 shades for each color

Bulma will automatically generate 21 shades of each color, one for each amount of lightness, starting from around 0% and going up in 5% increments, until 100% is reached.

I am saying around 0% because the last digit is determined by the base color. If the base color’s lightness is 42%, then --bulma-primary-00 will be 2%, not 0%.

--bulma-primary-00 --bulma-primary-00-invert
--bulma-primary-05 --bulma-primary-05-invert
--bulma-primary-10 --bulma-primary-10-invert
--bulma-primary-15 --bulma-primary-15-invert
--bulma-primary-20 --bulma-primary-20-invert
--bulma-primary-25 --bulma-primary-25-invert
--bulma-primary-30 --bulma-primary-30-invert
--bulma-primary-35 --bulma-primary-35-invert
--bulma-primary-40 --bulma-primary-40-invert
--bulma-primary-45 --bulma-primary-45-invert
--bulma-primary-50 --bulma-primary-50-invert
--bulma-primary-55 --bulma-primary-55-invert
--bulma-primary-60 --bulma-primary-60-invert
--bulma-primary-65 --bulma-primary-65-invert
--bulma-primary-70 --bulma-primary-70-invert
--bulma-primary-75 --bulma-primary-75-invert
--bulma-primary-80 --bulma-primary-80-invert
--bulma-primary-85 --bulma-primary-85-invert
--bulma-primary-90 --bulma-primary-90-invert
--bulma-primary-95 --bulma-primary-95-invert
--bulma-primary-100 --bulma-primary-100-invert

Each of these shades has an -invert counterpart that can be used as a foreground color:

Background --bulma-primary-00 bulma-primary-00-invert on bulma-primary-00
Foreground --bulma-primary-00-invert
Background --bulma-primary-05 bulma-primary-05-invert on bulma-primary-05
Foreground --bulma-primary-05-invert
Background --bulma-primary-10 bulma-primary-10-invert on bulma-primary-10
Foreground --bulma-primary-10-invert
Background --bulma-primary-15 bulma-primary-15-invert on bulma-primary-15
Foreground --bulma-primary-15-invert
Background --bulma-primary-20 bulma-primary-20-invert on bulma-primary-20
Foreground --bulma-primary-20-invert
Background --bulma-primary-25 bulma-primary-25-invert on bulma-primary-25
Foreground --bulma-primary-25-invert
Background --bulma-primary-30 bulma-primary-30-invert on bulma-primary-30
Foreground --bulma-primary-30-invert
Background --bulma-primary-35 bulma-primary-35-invert on bulma-primary-35
Foreground --bulma-primary-35-invert
Background --bulma-primary-40 bulma-primary-40-invert on bulma-primary-40
Foreground --bulma-primary-40-invert
Background --bulma-primary-45 bulma-primary-45-invert on bulma-primary-45
Foreground --bulma-primary-45-invert
Background --bulma-primary-50 bulma-primary-50-invert on bulma-primary-50
Foreground --bulma-primary-50-invert
Background --bulma-primary-55 bulma-primary-55-invert on bulma-primary-55
Foreground --bulma-primary-55-invert
Background --bulma-primary-60 bulma-primary-60-invert on bulma-primary-60
Foreground --bulma-primary-60-invert
Background --bulma-primary-65 bulma-primary-65-invert on bulma-primary-65
Foreground --bulma-primary-65-invert
Background --bulma-primary-70 bulma-primary-70-invert on bulma-primary-70
Foreground --bulma-primary-70-invert
Background --bulma-primary-75 bulma-primary-75-invert on bulma-primary-75
Foreground --bulma-primary-75-invert
Background --bulma-primary-80 bulma-primary-80-invert on bulma-primary-80
Foreground --bulma-primary-80-invert
Background --bulma-primary-85 bulma-primary-85-invert on bulma-primary-85
Foreground --bulma-primary-85-invert
Background --bulma-primary-90 bulma-primary-90-invert on bulma-primary-90
Foreground --bulma-primary-90-invert
Background --bulma-primary-95 bulma-primary-95-invert on bulma-primary-95
Foreground --bulma-primary-95-invert
Background --bulma-primary-100 bulma-primary-100-invert on bulma-primary-100
Foreground --bulma-primary-100-invert

Lightness CSS variables

If you write your own CSS and want to use one these shades yourself, you can access the lightness value via its dedicated CSS variable that has a -l suffix.

For example, the bulma-primary-75 color is defined like this:

:root {
  --bulma-primary-75: hsla(

In this case, --bulma-primary-75-l is equal to 76%, and you can access its value with the var(--bulma-primary-75-l) CSS variable.

CSS helper classes

While you can access all a color’s CSS variables directly by writing color: var(--bulma-primary) for example, Bulma also provides CSS helper classes for each color.

Those helper classes exist for to set either the color or the background.

# Color color class background class
--bulma-primary has-text-primary Hello World has-background-primary Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-invert has-text-primary-invert Hello World has-background-primary-invert Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-invert">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-invert">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-light has-text-primary-light Hello World has-background-primary-light Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-light">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-light">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-light-invert has-text-primary-light-invert Hello World has-background-primary-light-invert Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-light-invert">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-light-invert">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-dark has-text-primary-dark Hello World has-background-primary-dark Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-dark">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-dark">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-dark-invert has-text-primary-dark-invert Hello World has-background-primary-dark-invert Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-dark-invert">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-dark-invert">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-on-scheme has-text-primary-on-scheme Hello World has-background-primary-on-scheme Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-on-scheme">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-on-scheme">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-00 has-text-primary-00 Hello World has-background-primary-00 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-00">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-00">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-05 has-text-primary-05 Hello World has-background-primary-05 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-05">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-05">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-10 has-text-primary-10 Hello World has-background-primary-10 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-10">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-10">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-15 has-text-primary-15 Hello World has-background-primary-15 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-15">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-15">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-20 has-text-primary-20 Hello World has-background-primary-20 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-20">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-20">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-25 has-text-primary-25 Hello World has-background-primary-25 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-25">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-25">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-30 has-text-primary-30 Hello World has-background-primary-30 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-30">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-30">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-35 has-text-primary-35 Hello World has-background-primary-35 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-35">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-35">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-40 has-text-primary-40 Hello World has-background-primary-40 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-40">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-40">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-45 has-text-primary-45 Hello World has-background-primary-45 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-45">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-45">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-50 has-text-primary-50 Hello World has-background-primary-50 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-50">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-50">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-55 has-text-primary-55 Hello World has-background-primary-55 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-55">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-55">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-60 has-text-primary-60 Hello World has-background-primary-60 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-60">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-60">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-65 has-text-primary-65 Hello World has-background-primary-65 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-65">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-65">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-70 has-text-primary-70 Hello World has-background-primary-70 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-70">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-70">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-75 has-text-primary-75 Hello World has-background-primary-75 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-75">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-75">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-80 has-text-primary-80 Hello World has-background-primary-80 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-80">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-80">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-85 has-text-primary-85 Hello World has-background-primary-85 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-85">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-85">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-90 has-text-primary-90 Hello World has-background-primary-90 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-90">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-90">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-95 has-text-primary-95 Hello World has-background-primary-95 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-95">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-95">Background</span>
--bulma-primary-100 has-text-primary-100 Hello World has-background-primary-100 Hello World
<span class="has-text-primary-100">Color</span>
<span class="has-background-primary-100">Background</span>

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