A plugin for Babel v6 which transforms inline styles defined in JavaScript modules into class names so they become available to, e.g. the `className` prop of React elements. While transforming, the plugin processes all JavaScript style definitions found and bundles them up into a CSS file, ready to be requested from your web server.
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README.md

babel-plugin-css-in-js

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A plugin for Babel v6 which transforms inline styles defined in JavaScript modules into class names so they become available to, e.g. the className prop of React elements. While transforming, the plugin processes all JavaScript style definitions found and bundles them up into a CSS file, ready to be requested from your web server.

babel-plugin-css-in-js works seamlessly on both client and server. It has built-in support for media queries, pseudo-classes, attribute selectors, and theming. The plugin's options allow you to configure vendor-prefixing, minification, and class name compression.

If you're impatient, visit the live demo. The source code for it can be found in the example directory.

Example

In order for the plugin to work, in your components, surround each inline style specification with a module-level cssInJS() function call. This provides a hook for the plugin to process the first argument given to the call and then replace it with an object literal containing the resulting class names as values.

In

<Button className={styles.button} />

var styles = cssInJS({
  button: {
    padding: 5,
    backgroundColor: "blue"
  }
});

Out

JavaScript:

<Button className={styles.button} />

var styles = {
  button: "example_js_styles_button"
};

CSS:

.example_js_styles_button {
  padding: 5px;
  background-color: blue;
}

The stylesheet specification format is explained further down.

Note the return value of cssInJS(...) must be assigned to a variable. The name of the variable is used to distinguish multiple cssInJS calls within a file.

Installation

Install via npm:

$ npm install babel-plugin-css-in-js --save-dev

Usage

Via .babelrc (Recommended)

.babelrc

{
  "plugins": ["css-in-js"]
}

Via CLI

$ babel  --plugins css-in-js  script.js

Via Node API

require('babel-core').transform('code', {
  plugins: ['css-in-js']
});

Options

The plugin allows configuration of several parameters which control the generated CSS. You can pass options to the plugin by using a two-element array when adding the plugin. For instance, using .babelrc:

{
  "presets": [
    "es2015",
    "react"
  ],
  "plugins": [
    "foo-plugin",
    ["css-in-js", { "vendorPrefixes": true, "bundleFile": "public/bundle.css" }]
  ]
}

Available options:

Option Default Description
vendorPrefixes false If true, the generated CSS is run through autoprefixer to add vendor prefixes to the rules. If set to an object, it is passed to autoprefixer as options argument.
minify false Set to true to enable minification of the generated CSS. The popular clean-css package is used for this.
compressClassNames false Set to true to shorten/obfuscate generated CSS class names. A class name like "my_file-my_styles_var-my_name" will so be converted to, e.g., "_bf".
mediaMap {} This allows you to define media query shortcuts which are expanded on building the CSS. Example: using { phone: "media only screen and (max-width: 640px)" } as value for this option and a stylesheet spec having "@phone" as a key, that key will be translated to @media only screen and (max-width: 640px) in the final CSS.
context null If set to an object, each identifier found on the right-hand side of a style rule is substituted with the corresponding property value of this object. If set to a file path, the file is require'd and the exported object is used as stylesheet context.
cacheDir tmp/cache/ If you set the compressClassNames option to true, the class name cache will be persisted in a file in this directory.
bundleFile bundle.css All generated CSS is bundled into this file.
identifier cssInJS The name used for detecting inline styles to transform.
transformOptions { presets: ['es2015'] } Babel options to use when passing a function as argument (instead of an object) to cssInJS().

Stylesheet Specification Format

Here's what you can put inside the parentheses of cssInJS(...).

Simple Styles

{
  myButton: {
    border: 'solid 1px #ccc',
    backgroundColor: 'lightgray',
    display: 'inline-block'
  },

  myInput: {
    width: '100%',
    // ... etc.
  }
}

An inline style is not specified as a string. Instead it is specified with an object whose properties form the CSS ruleset for that style. A property's key is the camelCased version of the rule name, and the value is the rule's value, usually a string.

There's also a shorthand notation for specifying pixel values, see this React tip for more details.

Pseudo-Classes and Attribute Selectors

{
  myButton: {
    border: 'solid 1px #ccc',
    backgroundColor: 'lightgray',
    display: 'inline-block',
    cursor: 'pointer',

    ':focus': {
      borderColor: '#aaa'
    },

    ':hover': {
      borderColor: '#ddd',

      ':active': {
        borderColor: '#eee'
      }
    },

    '[disabled]': {
      cursor: 'not-allowed',
      opacity: .5,

      ':hover': {
        backgroundColor: 'transparent'
      }
    }
  }
}

As you can see, pseudo-classes and attribute selectors can be nested arbitrarily deep. But you don't have to use nesting. Here is the example from above in the un-nested version:

{
  myButton: {
    border: 'solid 1px #ccc',
    backgroundColor: 'lightgray',
    display: 'inline-block',
    cursor: 'pointer'
  },
  'myButton:focus': {
    borderColor: '#aaa'
  },
  'myButton:hover': {
    borderColor: '#ddd'
  },
  'myButton:hover:active': {
    borderColor: '#eee'
  },
  'myButton[disabled]': {
    cursor: 'not-allowed',
    opacity: .5
  },
  'myButton[disabled]:hover': {
    backgroundColor: 'transparent'
  }
}

Media Queries

{
  myButton: {
    border: 'solid 1px #ccc',
    // ...
  },

  myInput: {
    width: '100%',
    // ...
  },

  '@media only screen and (max-width: 480px)': {
    myButton: {
      borderWidth: 0
    },

    myInput: {
      fontSize: 14
    }
  },

  '@media only screen and (max-width: 768px)': {
    myButton: {
      borderWidth: 2,

      ':hover': {
        borderWidth: 3
      }
    }
  }
}

Media queries can appear at the top-level (as shown above) or nested in the style:

{
  myButton: {
    border: 'solid 1px #ccc',

    '@media only screen and (max-width: 480px)': {
      borderWidth: 0,

      ':active': {
        borderColor: 'blue'
      }
    },

    '@media only screen and (max-width: 768px)': {
      // ...
    }
  }
}

Given you set { phone: 'media only screen and (max-width: 480px)', tablet: 'media only screen and (max-width: 768px)' } as mediaMap option for the transformation, the above spec can be simplified to:

{
  myButton: {
    border: 'solid 1px #ccc',

    '@phone': {
      borderWidth: 0,

      ':active': {
        borderColor: 'blue'
      }
    },

    '@tablet': {
      // ...
    }
  }
}

Expressions in Style Rules

You can do simple arithmetic and string concats on the right-hand side of style rules. Each identifier found is substituted with the corresponding property value of the context object provided as option.

Example for a given context { MyColors: { green: '#00FF00' }, myUrl: 'path/to/image.png' }:

{
  myButton: {
    color: MyColors.green,
    borderWidth: 42 + 'px',
    backgroundImage: 'url(' + myUrl + ')'
  }
}

Basic theming via nesting within global selectors

You can nest your styles within another selector which is prefixed with $. These "global" selectors will be prepended (without the dollar sign of course) to the styles when generating the CSS. Nested styles also support pseudo-classes, attribute selectors and media queries. Example:

{
  myButton: {
    color: 'black'
  },
  '$body.red-theme': {
    myButton: {
      color: 'red'
    }
  },
  '$.blue >': {
    myButton: {
      color: 'blue';
    }
  }
}

CSS output (assuming b1 will become the generated class name for myButton):

.b1 {
  color: black;
}

body.red-theme .b1 {
  color: red;
}

.blue > .b1 {
  color: blue;
}

Global Styles

To opt out of the autogenerated class names and use global CSS selectors instead, you can prefix a selector with $. The selector will be passed through unchanged to the CSS.

This is useful to define reset, site-wide, or legacy styles without having to use a separate pipeline.

{
  '$html, body': {
    margin: 0,
    padding: 0,
  },

  '$.small-caps': {
    fontVariant: 'small-caps',
    fontFeatureSettings: '"smcp"',
  },

  '$.legacy-button': {
    border: '1px solid gray',
  },
}

CSS:

html, body {
  margin: 0;
  padding: 0;
}

.small-caps {
  font-variant: small-caps;
  font-feature-settings: "smcp";
}

.legacy-button {
  border: 1px solid gray;
}

Global selectors will be omitted in the JS object that cssInJS returns.

Dynamic Styles using Function Expressions

In order to write style rules dynamically, you can use function expressions. A function gives more freedom than an object. It receives a context object as first parameter. With this, you can do any programmatic operation, such as conditionals or even iterating over something. ES6 syntax is also available.

The function will be executed in a completely blocked Node.js VM sandbox environment, reveiving only the context object. Therefore you cannot require or import other modules in its body, or access references outside its scope.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the bundle file extraction and the JS file transformation will be based on the function's return value (which should be an object conforming to the Stylesheet Specification Format).

Here's an example that generates a stylesheet object based on platform, theme and env information passed via the context argument:

const style = cssInJS(function(context) {
  const { env, platform, theme } = context;

  const buttonSize = 100;
  let marginList = [10, 8, 10, 8];

  if (platform === 'iOS') {
    marginList = marginList.map(v => v - 2);
  }

  return {
    button: {
      width: buttonSize,
      margin: marginList.map(v => v + 'px').join(' '),
      color: platform === 'Android' ? 'red' : 'blue',
      border: env === 'development' ? '2px solid red' : 'none'
    },

    buttonBox: {
      backgroundColor: theme === 'dark' ? 'black' : 'white';
    }
  };
});

The context argument in the above code can be passed from, e.g., a Webpack babel loader setting like this:

// webpack.config.js

const env      = process.env.NODE_ENV || 'test';
const platform = process.env.PLATFORM || 'desktop';
const theme    = process.env.THEME    || 'dark';

const babelPluginCSSInJS = [
  ["css-in-js", {
    compressClassNames: env === 'production',
    vendorPrefixes: true,

    // generate a CSS bundle for each platform and theme
    bundleFile: `build/bundle.${theme}.${platform}.css`,

    context: { env, platform, theme },
  }],
];

module.exports = {
  // ...
  module: {
    loaders: [{
      test: /\.js$/,
      loader: 'babel',
      query: {
        presets: ['es2015', 'react'],
        plugins: [
          babelPluginCSSInJS,
        ]
      },
    }],
  },
  // ...
}

Example

If you just want to see some example output for a file, head over to this repo's quick example. There you will find the code for a simple button component together with its transformed version and CSS file (both with and without compressed class names).

The code for a more sophisticated example can be found in the repo's example directory. After cloning this repo, see the example's README for more info on how to run it.

Caveats

  • Just using var styles = cssInJS(...) in your React modules and skipping the transformation step won't work. It's the transformation that is responsible for a) generating the real CSS, and b) turning your cssInJS(...) calls into object literals holding the CSS class names so you can do <foo className={styles.bar} /> without breaking React. But you are transpiling your JavaScript anyway to get these cool new ES2015 features, aren't you?
  • Apart from simple arithmetic and string concats, a stylesheet specification cannot contain advanced dynamic stuff, because although the transformer parses the source input, it is not compiled. If you really need to add truly dynamic styles, that's what the style attribute/prop was made for. style also has the positive side-effect of taking precedence over class names.

Contributing

  1. Fork it ( https://github.com/martinandert/babel-plugin-css-in-js )
  2. Run npm install to install dependencies.
  3. Run the tests. We only take pull requests with passing tests, and it's great to know that you have a clean slate: make test.
  4. Create your feature branch (git checkout -b my-new-feature)
  5. Add a test for your change. Only refactoring and documentation changes require no new tests. If you are adding functionality or are fixing a bug, we need a test!
  6. Make the test pass.
  7. Commit your changes (git commit -am 'add some feature')
  8. Push to your fork (git push origin my-new-feature)
  9. Create a new Pull Request

License

Released under The MIT License.