CSS play - A CSS only version of form input prompts

1st March 2014

For IE10+, Firefox, Opera, Safari, Chrome
iOS, Android OS and Smartphones including Windows wp8

copyright © stu nicholls - CSS play


No doubt you have all seen form fields which contain prompts for the required inputs, and the prompts are removed when you enter the inputs. Also the prompts return if you leave the input without entering any text.

In all the forms that I have seen this is done using jQuery/javascript. So I thought that it might be interesting if this were done using just CSS. So I have produced the demo form above.

If you click on any label or input the input prompts will be removed so that you can enter text. If you enter your text then click another field the promt for the entered field will not return. However, if you go back into the same field and delete your text then leave this field the prompt will be displayed.

As an added bonus the prompt text can be a different color to the input text.

All done with just CSS and works in all the latest browsers.


You may use this method on your personal 'non-profit' web site without seeking my permission. A link back to CSSplay is always appreciated.

Commercial usage is also permitted without seeking approval, but I would ask that a donation is considered to support my work on CSSPlay.

If you are having problems integrating any of my demonstrations into your website then I now offer a service to fault find and correct any errors that you may have introduced. Please email me for more information.

Please Support CSS play

Please note that if your donation is for a demo/menu then you will need to email me with the url of the demo/menu after making the donation

For more CSS demonstrations I recommend that you visit the Dynamic Drive CSS Library.

Free, practical CSS menus, layouts, and examples

Soft Geometry Creative Industries

Soft Geometry Creative Industries
is a music-based design company located in Bristol UK.
I create artwork for albums, singles, posters and t-shirts.
My work is influenced by punk and post-punk poster and flyer design,
lo-fi photocopy aesthetics,
Francis Bacon and Mark Rothko.

I can provide a start to finish service with my own art and photography, put together work from images provided by yourself, and collaborate on an idea.

Follow CSS play

Facebook   Twitter   Facebook Fan Page