Styling CSS Print Page Breaks

By  on  
CSS Page Break

It's important to construct your websites in a fashion that lends well to print. I use a page-break CSS class on my websites to tell the browser to insert a page break at strategic points on the page. During the development of my websites, I style the page-break class for the "screen" media so I can see how pages will print without needing to "print preview" every time I want to find out where I put my page breaks. The following CSS is all I need.

The CSS

@media screen {
	.page-break	{ height:10px; background:url(page-break.gif) 0 center repeat-x; border-top:1px dotted #999; margin-bottom:13px; }
}
@media print {
	.page-break { height:0; page-break-before:always; margin:0; border-top:none; }
}

Realize that this CSS doesn't account for browser-triggered page breaks; it only shows you where you've put your own custom page breaks. Note that we've also hidden all of the page break visuals for the "print" media.

Just another styling tip to make your CSS print development easier!

Recent Features

  • By
    How to Create a RetroPie on Raspberry Pi – Graphical Guide

    Today we get to play amazing games on our super powered game consoles, PCs, VR headsets, and even mobile devices.  While I enjoy playing new games these days, I do long for the retro gaming systems I had when I was a kid: the original Nintendo...

  • By
    Designing for Simplicity

    Before we get started, it's worth me spending a brief moment introducing myself to you. My name is Mark (or @integralist if Twitter happens to be your communication tool of choice) and I currently work for BBC News in London England as a principal engineer/tech...

Incredible Demos

  • By
    MooTools History Plugin

    One of the reasons I love AJAX technology so much is because it allows us to avoid unnecessary page loads.  Why download the header, footer, and other static data multiple times if that specific data never changes?  It's a waste of time, processing, and bandwidth.  Unfortunately...

  • By
    Image Data URIs with PHP

    If you troll page markup like me, you've no doubt seen the use of data URI's within image src attributes. Instead of providing a traditional address to the image, the image file data is base64-encoded and stuffed within the src attribute. Doing so saves...

Discussion

  1. Ben

    Never thought of previewing page breaks this way, great idea thanks David!

    A problem I ran into a few weeks ago:

    We needed to email our customers a set of 3 gift vouchers contained in an HTML email, containing barcodes, that they could print off and take into stores.

    Problem is that the HTML email was longer than your average A4 sheet of paper, so the 2nd voucher was inevitably cut in half and spread over 2 pages. This of course would be different for each user, browser/email client and printer combination.

    Unfortunately I’ve found that very few of the popular email clients and webmail services support CSS page breaks.

    Can you think of any way around this? Or know of any means of generating PDFs dynamically that I could then attach to the emails?

    Cheers :)
    Ben

    • Joves

      Consider using Active PDF to generate a PDF dynamically. We use it for our clients and they love it. It is a bit arcane to work with but with a little patience you can create a nice document.

  2. Bart (Belgium)

    Thanks, man…
    This really helped me out!

    Best regards,

    Bart
    Antwerp, Belgium

  3. vignesh

    Its possible to apply dynamically page break . For example my web page is 1200px . i want to apply break @ height of 600px .

  4. Amy

    This won’t work in Chrome. Have you find a way to make it work on Chrome. I’m facing an issue for last 2 days.

  5. Shane

    The page-break demo works for me on Chrome, but doesn’t work on Firefox. Does something different need to be done for Firefox? Thanks

  6. Kostas

    The margin applies perfect in each page break, but what happens to the page title,page number etc. I don’t want to show it, but there is no other way to hide them except setting margin 0;
    Any workaround on this?

  7. Michael

    This would seem to work if you are defining the page breaks and if you have static content. In my case, I need to show the page breaks in a preview page where the user is editing the content on the fly at runtime (in another page). So the content may grow/shrink and the html is dynamic. I do not think it is possible to show page breaks like you are doing in this case, do you agree?

Wrap your code in <pre class="{language}"></pre> tags, link to a GitHub gist, JSFiddle fiddle, or CodePen pen to embed!