Bootstrap vs Materialize CSS

April 7, 2021, 12:28 p.m.
Bootstrap vs Materialize CSS

As most of us know, a CSS framework is a code library with common web designs that make it easier for a developer to implement within their web applications. In simple terms, a CSS framework is a collection of CSS style-sheets that are prepped and ready to use.

In fact, a CSS framework gives web developers a basic structure, which includes a grid, interactive UI patterns, buttons, web typography, tooltips, form elements, and icons. This structure helps web developers get started quickly and effectively when they are designing a website or web applications.

In the search for the best framework for web development, it always comes to choosing between Bootstrap vs Materialize and the thing is, both have their own advantages and disadvantages and it is highly dependent on the purpose of your projects.

Both Bootstrap and Materialize are Front-End Frameworks. While the first is an HTML, CSS, and JS framework, the other is a CSS framework based on Material Design by Google.


What is Bootstrap?

Bootstrap is a front-end framework developed by Twitter. It is an open-source CSS framework, its main objective in a web project is to apply a layout and provide basic style definitions for all HTML elements. Everyone can take full advantage of its defined CSS classes and customize the content further. Besides, the framework features jQuery plugins that are basically JavaScript components with additional UI elements. Bootstrap components come with HTML structure and CSS declarations as well as JavaScript code.


What is Materialize?

Materialize uses a modern design philosophy by Google Material design. Its goal is to bring uniformity to Google UI on all possible platforms. The principal focus of this philosophy is on how the elements of the user interface interact and behave visually.

This framework is a library that packs HTML, CSS (written in Sass), and JS that combines the best practices for design, browser portability, and responsiveness. It comes with built-in easy to use features and other essential functionalities and gives you the ability to use smooth and neat animations and transitions.


Bootstrap vs Materialize: What brings them together?

First of all, their structure in web apps is identical with CSS, JS, and fonts stored in their respective folders by default. Furthermore, both Bootstrap and Materialize utilize a grid system based on 12 columns with similar class names and overall structure, and most importantly, both frameworks are responsive and both have a set of components and an icon set without active maintenance and support.


Bootstrap vs Materialize: How do they differ?

Bootstrap is a highly popular and powerful tool for web development with a uniquely large community, which makes the search exceedingly easy. The development of your website is easy and intuitive because most of the work is already done. You can take advantage of the high-speed development and finish your projects in the blink of an eye.

As far as Materialize CSS goes, it’s based on Mobile UI and everything you need for developing a mobile app. The framework also takes advantage of the elements of JS. However, it's not best for beginners. The use of these slightly critical JS components could become a problem altogether. Moreover, it’s harder to find a solution for these issues as the community isn’t that large and developed.

The major difference between both frameworks is that Bootstrap gives you a lot more freedom and control while Materialize is more obstinate about how your items should look and behave.


Bootstrap advantages:

 1) Powerful responsive design:

The Bootstrap framework focuses a great deal on responsiveness.  For example, its classes can dynamically adjust elements for different screen sizes. Every year cell phone devices continue to become more popular and having a responsive website is now both mandatory and vital.

In fact, it relies on the device resolution of the client. You can perceive the number of spots in the grid framework and decide how you want to divide up space on the screen.  For example, since Bootstrap uses a 12 column format, the homepage for this site is divided into 4 columns (for the tags and course) and 8 columns (for the articles).

<div class="container">
    <div class="row">
        <div class="col-4">
        <div class="col-8">

homepage example

2) Built-in libraries of resources:

Bootstrap provides large libraries for front-end developers, for example, website layouts, website templates, Bootstrap themes, admin panels, and a massive collection of UI components.

The pre-build components include buttons, cards, progress bars, alerts, forms.

Card image cap
Card title

Some quick example text to build on the card title and make up the bulk of the card's content.

Go somewhere


3) Bootstrap is flexible and very easy to use:

Bootstrap gives designers the adaptability to create. It’s CSS structure with predefined classes for format using its lattice framework, different CSS segments, and JavaScript capabilities.

These are all included and the designer has the adaptability and the opportunity of using just those classes that are required in the markup. This makes it exceptionally adaptable whereby the designer can decide whether to choose pre-built components or make their own.



Materialize advantages:

1) Amazing Material Design UIs:

A good UX responds to the user: their interactions all have clear responses so they can more easily navigate and understand your UI. It looks great even out of the box: check out their starter template.



2) Excellent Selection Of User Icons:

Materialize includes 740 Material Design Icons, which are bundled in a single font file taking advantage of the typographic rendering capabilities of modern browser, each one can be easily incorporated with a few lines of code.

An add icon

<i class=”material-icons”>add </i>

3) Color Palette:

Materialize has a huge variety of colors compared to Bootstrap, which has only a few. In bootstrap the color for warning is red, for success it’s green and so on. But in Material Design the color palette is built around base colors. Each of these colors is defined with a base color class and a selection of lighter or darker classes, creating a much broader palate for your UI design.

To apply a background color, just add the color name and light/darkness as a class to the element.


4) Beautiful Card Elements:

Cards can easily show important content in a clean-straightforward desgin. They are also adapted to present similar objects with a large variety of sizes or supporting actions, like photos with captions of variable length.



In closing, in this Bootstrap vs Materialize CSS review, we can finally say that if you are more focused on Mobile Web App then you should choose Materialize CSS, but if you are a beginner, I recommended using bootstrap since it's very user-friendly and every single problem can easily be googled.

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Full Stack Developer & a writer.