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backface-visibility

The backface-visibility CSS property sets whether the back face of an element is visible when turned towards the user.

An element's back face is a mirror image of its front face. Though invisible in 2D, the back face can become visible when a transformation causes the element to be rotated in 3D space. (This property has no effect on 2D transforms, which have no perspective.)

Syntax

/* Keyword values */
backface-visibility: visible;
backface-visibility: hidden;

/* Global values */
backface-visibility: inherit;
backface-visibility: initial;
backface-visibility: unset;

The backface-visibility property is specified as one of the keywords listed below.

Values

visible
The back face is visible when turned towards the user.
hidden
The back face is hidden, effectively making the element invisible when turned away from the user.

Formal definition

Initial value visible
Applies to transformable elements
Inherited no
Computed value as specified
Animation type discrete

Formal syntax

visible | hidden

Examples

Cube with transparent and opaque faces

This example shows a cube with transparent faces, and one with opaque faces.

HTML

<table>
  <tr>
    <th><code>backface-visibility: visible;</code></th>
    <th><code>backface-visibility: hidden;</code></th>
  </tr>
  <tr>
    <td>
      <div class="container">
        <div class="cube showbf">
          <div class="face front">1</div>
          <div class="face back">2</div>
          <div class="face right">3</div>
          <div class="face left">4</div>
          <div class="face top">5</div>
          <div class="face bottom">6</div>
        </div>
      </div>
      <p>
        Since all faces are partially transparent,
        the back faces (2, 4, 5) are visible
        through the front faces (1, 3, 6).
      </p>
    </td>
    <td>
      <div class="container">
        <div class="cube hidebf">
          <div class="face front">1</div>
          <div class="face back">2</div>
          <div class="face right">3</div>
          <div class="face left">4</div>
          <div class="face top">5</div>
          <div class="face bottom">6</div>
        </div>
      </div>
      <p>
        The three back faces (2, 4, 5) are
        hidden.
      </p>
    </td>
  </tr>
</table>

CSS

/* Classes that will show or hide the
   three back faces of the "cube" */
.showbf div {
  backface-visibility: visible;
}

.hidebf div {
  backface-visibility: hidden;
}

/* Define the container div, the cube div, and a generic face */
.container {
  width: 150px;
  height: 150px;
  margin: 75px 0 0 75px;
  border: none;
}

.cube {
  width: 100%;
  height: 100%;
  perspective: 550px;
  perspective-origin: 150% 150%;
  transform-style: preserve-3d;
}

.face {
  display: block;
  position: absolute;
  width: 100px;
  height: 100px;
  border: none;
  line-height: 100px;
  font-family: sans-serif;
  font-size: 60px;
  color: white;
  text-align: center;
}

/* Define each face based on direction */
.front {
  background: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.3);
  transform: translateZ(50px);
}

.back {
  background: rgba(0, 255, 0, 1);
  color: black;
  transform: rotateY(180deg) translateZ(50px);
}

.right {
  background: rgba(196, 0, 0, 0.7);
  transform: rotateY(90deg) translateZ(50px);
}

.left {
  background: rgba(0, 0, 196, 0.7);
  transform: rotateY(-90deg) translateZ(50px);
}

.top {
  background: rgba(196, 196, 0, 0.7);
  transform: rotateX(90deg) translateZ(50px);
}

.bottom {
  background: rgba(196, 0, 196, 0.7);
  transform: rotateX(-90deg) translateZ(50px);
}

/* Make the table a little nicer */
th, p, td {
  background-color: #EEEEEE;
  margin: 0px;
  padding: 6px;
  font-family: sans-serif;
  text-align: left;
}

Result

Specifications

Specification Status Comment
CSS Transforms Level 2
The definition of 'backface-visibility' in that specification.
Editor's Draft Initial definition.

Browser compatibilityUpdate compatibility data on GitHub

Desktop
Chrome Edge Firefox Internet Explorer Opera Safari
backface-visibility 36
36
12
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
12
12
12
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
16
16
10
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -moz-
49
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
45
Prefixed Disabled
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
Disabled From version 45: this feature is behind the layout.css.prefixes.webkit preference (needs to be set to true). To change preferences in Firefox, visit about:config.
10 23
23
15
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
5.1
Prefixed
5.1
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
Mobile
Android webview Chrome for Android Firefox for Android Opera for Android Safari on iOS Samsung Internet
backface-visibility 37
37
3
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
36
36
18
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
16
16
10
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -moz-
49
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
44
Prefixed Disabled
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
Disabled From version 44: this feature is behind the layout.css.prefixes.webkit preference (needs to be set to true). To change preferences in Firefox, visit about:config.
24
24
14
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
5
Prefixed
5
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
3.0
3.0
1.0
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-

See also

© 2005–2020 Mozilla and individual contributors.
Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License v2.5 or later.
https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/CSS/backface-visibility