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The stylelint CLI


stylelint is an npm package. Install it using:

npm install -g stylelint


stylelint --help prints the CLI documentation.

The CLI outputs formatted results into process.stdout, which you can read with your human eyes or pipe elsewhere (e.g. write the information to a file).


Looking for .stylelintrc and linting all .css files in the foo directory:

stylelint "foo/*.css"

Looking for .stylelintrc and linting stdin:

echo "a { color: pink; }" | stylelint

Using bar/mySpecialConfig.json as config to lint all .css files in the foo directory, then writing the output to myTestReport.txt:

stylelint "foo/*.css" --config bar/mySpecialConfig.json > myTestReport.txt

Using bar/mySpecialConfig.json as config, with quiet mode on, to lint all .css files in the foo directory and any of its subdirectories and also all .css files in the bar directory, then writing the JSON-formatted output to myJsonReport.json:

stylelint "foo/**/*.css bar/*.css" -q -f json --config bar/mySpecialConfig.json > myJsonReport.json

Linting all the .scss files in the foo directory, using the syntax option:

stylelint "foo/**/*.scss" --syntax scss

In addition to --syntax scss, stylelint supports --syntax less and --syntax sugarss by default. If you're using one of the default syntaxes, you may not need to provide a --syntax option: non-standard syntaxes can be automatically inferred from the following file extensions: .less, .scss, and .sss.

Additionally, stylelint can accept a custom PostCSS-compatible syntax. To use a custom syntax, supply a syntax module name or path to the syntax file: --custom-syntax custom-syntax or --custom-syntax ./path/to/custom-syntax.

Note, however, that stylelint can provide no guarantee that core rules will work with syntaxes other than the defaults listed above.

Syntax errors

The CLI informs you about syntax errors in your CSS. It uses the same format as it uses for linting warnings. The error name is CssSyntaxError.

Exit codes

The CLI can exit the process with the following exit codes:

  • 1: Something unknown went wrong.
  • 2: At least one rule with an "error"-level severity triggered at least one warning.
  • 78: There was some problem with the configuration file.
  • 80: A file glob was passed, but it found no files.