What are the two containers of Bootstrap?

How they work

Containers are the most basic layout element in Bootstrap and are required when using our default grid system. Containers are used to contain, pad, and (sometimes) center the content within them. While containers can be nested, most layouts do not require a nested container.

Bootstrap comes with three different containers:

  • .container, which sets a max-width at each responsive breakpoint
  • .container-fluid, which is width: 100% at all breakpoints
  • .container-{breakpoint}, which is width: 100% until the specified breakpoint

The table below illustrates how each containers max-width compares to the original .container and .container-fluid across each breakpoint.

See them in action and compare them in our Grid example.

Extra small
<576px

Small
576px

Medium
768px

Large
992px

X-Large
1200px

XX-Large
1400px

.container
100%
540px
720px
960px
1140px
1320px

.container-sm
100%
540px
720px
960px
1140px
1320px

.container-md
100%
100%
720px
960px
1140px
1320px

.container-lg
100%
100%
100%
960px
1140px
1320px

.container-xl
100%
100%
100%
100%
1140px
1320px

.container-xxl
100%
100%
100%
100%
100%
1320px

.container-fluid
100%
100%
100%
100%
100%
100%

Default container

Our default .container class is a responsive, fixed-width container, meaning its max-width changes at each breakpoint.

<div class=“container”>
<!– Content here –>
</div>

Responsive containers

Responsive containers allow you to specify a class that is 100% wide until the specified breakpoint is reached, after which we apply max-widths for each of the higher breakpoints. For example, .container-sm is 100% wide to start until the sm breakpoint is reached, where it will scale up with md, lg, xl, and xxl.

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<div class=“container-sm”>100% wide until small breakpoint</div>
<div class=“container-md”>100% wide until medium breakpoint</div>
<div class=“container-lg”>100% wide until large breakpoint</div>
<div class=“container-xl”>100% wide until extra large breakpoint</div>
<div class=“container-xxl”>100% wide until extra extra large breakpoint</div>

Fluid containers

Use .container-fluid for a full width container, spanning the entire width of the viewport.

<div class=“container-fluid”>

</div>

Sass

As shown above, Bootstrap generates a series of predefined container classes to help you build the layouts you desire. You may customize these predefined container classes by modifying the Sass map (found in _variables.scss) that powers them:

$container-max-widths: (
sm: 540px,
md: 720px,
lg: 960px,
xl: 1140px,
xxl: 1320px
);

In addition to customizing the Sass, you can also create your own containers with our Sass mixin.

// Source mixin
@mixin make-container($padding-x: $container-padding-x) {
width: 100%;
padding-right: $padding-x;
padding-left: $padding-x;
margin-right: auto;
margin-left: auto;
}

// Usage
.custom-container {
@include make-container();
}

For more information and examples on how to modify our Sass maps and variables, please refer to the Sass section of the Grid documentation.

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