overflow-x property is used to specify whether the content of an element should be visible, clipped (hidden), or whether or not to add horizontal scroll bars when the content overflows the element’s left and right edges.
The content overflows an element horizontally when the element has a specified width, and it contains content inside it that has a width that is larger than the width of the element itself.
For example, an element may have overflow content if it has an explicitly set width, and contains an image whose width is larger than the width of the element, so the image extends outside the left and/or right boundaries of the element.
overflow-x property can be used to show the overflow content on the left and right edge, clip it (hide any excess content that’s outside the element’s boundaries), or add horizontal scroll bars to the element so that the overflow content can be seen on scroll.
overflow-x property can take one of four possible values:
visible (which is the default value),
hidden (which clips the content outside the boundaries of the element),
scroll (which adds a horizontal scroll bar to the element whether or not it needs it), and
auto (which leaves it up to the browser to decide whether or not to add scroll bars as necessary).
In CSS3, new overflow values have been added:
no-content. These values are still experimental and have no current (February 2014) browser support.
overflow-x property has been introduced in CSS3 as one of two long-hand property for the shorthand property
overflow, which can be used to set the values of both the
overflow-x property and the
overflow-y property. Refer to the
overflow property entry for more information.
overflow-x property only specifies how to treat overflow content that overflows the element horizontally. Any vertical overflow will be treated as specified using the
overflow-y properties. If the vertical overflow behavior it not specified explicitly using either
- If the value of
visible, the value of
overflow-ywill default to
- If the value of
hidden, the value of
overflow-ywill be set to
This is because the computed values of
overflow-y are the same as their specified values, except that some combinations with
visible are not possible, so the values are recomputed as specified in the above two points.
overflow-x: visible | hidden | scroll | auto | inherit
- Initial: visible
- Applies To: non-replaced block-level elements and non-replaced inline-block elements
- Animatable: no
In CSS3, the new syntax of the
overflow-x property with the two new values looks like this:
visible | hidden | scroll | auto | no-display | no-content. The values
no-content are currently not supported in any browser.
- This is the default value. It indicates that content is not clipped, i.e., it may be rendered outside the left and/or right edges of the element and may overlap other elements next to it.
- This value indicates that the content is clipped on the left and/or right edges and that no scroll bar should be provided to view the content outside the left and right boundaries of the element.
The behavior of the
autovalue is browser-dependent, but should cause a horizontal scroll bar to be added for overflowing elements in the horizontal direction.
- This value indicates that the content is clipped on the left and/or right edges and that if the browser should add a horizontal scroll bar to the element whether or not any of its content is clipped. This avoids any problem with scroll bars appearing and disappearing in a dynamic environment.
The element inherits its
overflow-xvalue from its parent.
- no-display (experimental)
When the content does not fit in the element horizontally, the whole element is removed, as if
- no-content (experimental)
When the content does not fit in the element horizontally, the whole content is hidden, as if
overflow-x: auto; overflow-x: hidden; overflow-x: scroll; overflow-x: visible; overflow-x: inherit;
The following is the live demo for the example shown in the description above. Try adding vertical content to the element to see how the value of the
overflow-y property is set depending on the value of
overflow property is supported in all major browsers: Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera, Internet Explorer, and on Android and iOS.
As mentioned on MDN, IE8 introduced
-ms-overflow-x as a synonym for
overflow-x. Don’t use the