How to Add Multiple Classes in HTML: A Straightforward Guide for Developers

By Cristian G. Guasch •  Updated: 09/18/23 •  7 min read

I’m sure you’ve been in a situation where you’re coding your website and find that one class just isn’t enough to style an HTML element. That’s when it becomes crucial to know how to add multiple classes in HTML. It’s not as daunting as it might seem, and I promise by the end of this article, you’ll have all the knowledge you need.

Adding multiple classes can drastically optimize your workflow. This practice allows for better reusability of code, keeps it DRY (Don’t Repeat Yourself), and ultimately makes your CSS more efficient. But how exactly do we go about adding these additional classes?

Well, let me break it down for you: HTML allows us to assign multiple classes to a single element. We simply separate each class with space inside our class attribute – no commas necessary! This feature is incredibly powerful and versatile, making it easier than ever to create complex designs without cluttering up your code or sacrificing efficiency.

Understanding HTML Classes

Diving right into the world of HTML, I can’t stress enough how vital classes are in your coding journey. They’re like secret agents, quietly working behind the scenes to give your webpage that special touch. It’s pretty easy once you get the hang of it.

To kick things off, HTML classes provide a way to select and manipulate DOM elements. These are wonderfully flexible features that allow web developers to apply specific style rules or perform certain JavaScript functions on a set of elements. Consider this typical example:

<div class="container">...</div>

In this snippet, “container” is a class assigned to the div element. This means any CSS styles or JavaScript functions associated with “container” will be applied to this div specifically.

But wait, there’s more! You’re not limited to just one class per element. Oh no! In fact, HTML allows you to add multiple classes simply by separating them with spaces within your class attribute value. Here’s an illustration:

<div class="container highlight">...</div>

Now our humble div carries two classes: “container” and “highlight”. Each has its own unique set of styles or functions which are combined when rendered in a browser.

And let’s not forget about manipulating these classes via JavaScript! With methods like element.classList.add()element.classList.remove(), and element.classList.toggle(), juggling multiple classes becomes a breeze!

So don’t shirk from using multiple HTML classes; they’re here to make your life easier after all! And remember — practice makes perfect; before long you’ll be handling these stealthy agents with ease.

Basics of Adding Multiple Classes in HTML

If you’re looking to spice up your web pages a bit, adding multiple classes in HTML is one nifty trick. It’s not as complex as it sounds, and I’ll guide you through it step by step.

First things first. What does adding multiple classes even mean? Well, in the realm of HTML and CSS, a class is used to style elements on a page. By assigning different classes to an element, you can apply varied styles to it without breaking a sweat. Here’s how you’d typically do this:

<div class="class1 class2">Hello world!</div>

In this example, class1 and class2 are two separate classes assigned to our good old friend “Hello world!”. Now each of these classes carries its own set of stylistic rules defined somewhere in your CSS file.

Suppose we’ve got class1 making text bold and class2 changing the color to blue. Together they’d make “Hello world!” both bold and blue! Here’s what that might look like in code:

.class1 {
  font-weight: bold;

.class2 {
  color: blue;

The beauty here lies in the flexibility offered by using multiple classes. You can mix and match them according to what your design needs at any given moment.

This isn’t just limited to divs either! You could use the same approach with paragraphs (p), headings (h1,h2…), span tags – practically anything really!

Here’s another example for good measure:

<p class="large-text red-text">I am large red text</p>

And corresponding CSS:

.large-text {
  font-size: 40px;

.red-text {
  color: red;

As you can see from these examples, learning to add multiple classes in HTML really opens up a world of possibilities for sprucing up your web pages. So go forth and experiment, you’ve got this!

Step-by-Step Guide: How to Add Multiple Classes in HTML

Diving right into the crux of it, you’ll find that adding multiple classes in HTML isn’t as complicated as you might think. You’re simply required to write them within the class attribute, separating each with a space. Here’s an example:

<div class="class1 class2 class3">This div has three classes</div>

In this code snippet, we’ve added three different classes – ‘class1’, ‘class2’, and ‘class3’ – to the div element.

You may wonder why one would need to add multiple classes to an HTML element. Well, it’s all about styling flexibility! By assigning multiple classes, I can apply different CSS rules from each class onto a single element which saves me from writing repetitive code. It also makes my code more readable and easier to maintain.

Now let’s look at how these classes are used in the CSS file:

.class1 {
  color: blue;

.class2 {
  background-color: yellow;

.class3 {
  font-size: 25px;

Each of these CSS rules will be applied to our div mentioned earlier because it includes all three classes.

Remember though, when dealing with multiple classes, order matters! In your CSS file if there are conflicting properties between the classes assigned to an element, the property defined last will take precedence. Here’s what I mean:

.class1 {
  color: blue;

.class2 {
  color: red;

If ‘class1’ and ‘class2’ were both assigned to a single HTML element using <div class="class1 class2">, then text inside that div would appear red instead of blue because color:red; comes after color:blue;.

It’s also important not just how many but WHICH classes you add. Consider this: if I have ten classes but none of them has the specific style I want, then they’re just not helpful.

So there you have it – a step-by-step guide on how to add multiple classes in HTML. With practice, you’ll find that it’s a valuable tool in creating efficient and organized code.

Common Mistakes When Adding Multiple Classes in HTML

Oh, the many pitfalls I’ve seen! There’s a common misconception that adding multiple classes to an HTML element is as simple as just stringing them together. But it’s not always that straightforward. You’d be surprised how often even experienced coders stumble when juggling multiple classes. So let me share some of the most frequent mistakes I’ve come across.

First off, there’s the ‘forgetting-the-space’ blunder. When you’re adding more than one class, they must be separated by a space within the class attribute. It might seem obvious but under pressure or in a rush, it’s easy to forget. Here’s an incorrect example:

<div class="class1,class2">...</div>

And here’s how it should look:

<div class="class1 class2">...</div>

Then we have the ‘over-nesting’ error. Sometimes developers unnecessarily nest elements with different classes within each other when they could just add multiple classes to a single element instead.

Another misstep is the ‘improper-casing’. HTML is case-sensitive so Class1 and class1 would not refer to the same thing – remember this!

Finally, there’s what I call “CSS collision”. This happens when two or more applied classes have conflicting styles defined in your CSS file which can lead to unexpected results on your web page.

So remember folks – spaces between classes matter, unnecessary nesting can be avoided with multiple class use, keep your casing consistent and watch out for those pesky CSS collisions! By dodging these errors you’ll find handling multi-class elements becomes much easier and efficient.

Cristian G. Guasch

Hey! I'm Cristian Gonzalez, I created HTML Easy to help you learn HTML easily and fast.

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