Backdrop Filter effect with CSS

Programming - Mar 31, 2024

I love these little posts where some tricky-looking design is solved by a single line of CSS using a little-known property. In this case, the design is a frosted glass effect and the CSS property is backdrop-filter.

The approach? Easy peasy:

.container {
  backdrop-filter: blur(10px);
}

The comments in the post are worth looking into because they address cross-browser support. Coverage is actually pretty good. Caniuse shows 83% global coverage with Firefox (and, predictably, Internet Explorer) lacking support. One commenter offered a nice fallback, along with a small tweak that desaturates the effect:

.container {
  background: rgba(0,0,0,0.8);
  backdrop-filter: saturate(180%) blur(10px);
}

Nice. But we can take it a little further by sprinkling @supports in there, as demonstrated in our background-filter Almanac entry:

.container {
  background: rgba(0,0,0,0.8);
}

@supports (-webkit-backdrop-filter: none) or (backdrop-filter: none) {
  .container {
    -webkit-backdrop-filter: blur(10px);
    backdrop-filter: blur(10px);
  }
}

Notice the -webkit prefix in there. It’s still worth using it in production, though that’s not a big deal assuming you’re wired up with Autoprefixer. Here’s the demo from the Almanac:

OK, so maybe not the one-line solution it appeared to be. But hey, it’s cool that this sort of thing is relatively trivial in CSS.

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