Button Styles

As a convention, buttons should only be used for actions while hyperlinks are to be used for objects. For instance, "Download" should be a button while "recent activity" should be a link. Button styles can be applied to anything with the btn class applied. However, typically you'll want to apply these to only a and button elements.

@import "variables.less";
@import "mixins.less";

Base styles

Standard gray button with gradient


Hover state

Focus state for keyboard and accessibility

Add the disabled class to links and the disabled attribute for button elements.

.btn {
  display: inline-block;
  padding: 4px 10px 4px;
  margin-bottom: 0; // For input.btn
  font-size: @baseFontSize;
  line-height: @baseLineHeight;
  color: @grayDark;
  text-align: center;
  text-shadow: 0 1px 1px rgba(255,255,255,.75);
  vertical-align: middle;
  .buttonBackground(@white, darken(@white, 10%));
  border: 1px solid #ccc;
  border-bottom-color: #bbb;
  @shadow: inset 0 1px 0 rgba(255,255,255,.2), 0 1px 2px rgba(0,0,0,.05);
  cursor: pointer;

  // Give IE7 some love

.btn:hover {
  color: @grayDark;
  text-decoration: none;
  background-color: darken(@white, 10%);
  background-position: 0 -15px;

  // transition is only when going to hover, otherwise the background
  // behind the gradient (there for IE<=9 fallback) gets mismatched
  .transition(background-position .1s linear);

.btn:focus {

.btn:active {
  background-image: none;
  @shadow: inset 0 2px 4px rgba(0,0,0,.15), 0 1px 2px rgba(0,0,0,.05);
  background-color: darken(@white, 10%);
  background-color: darken(@white, 15%) e("\9");
  outline: 0;

.btn[disabled] {
  cursor: default;
  background-image: none;
  background-color: darken(@white, 10%);

Multiple sizes

Fancy larger or smaller buttons?

.btn-large {
  padding: 9px 14px;
  font-size: @baseFontSize + 2px;
  line-height: normal;
.btn-large [class^="icon-"] {
  margin-top: 1px;

.btn-small {
  padding: 5px 9px;
  font-size: @baseFontSize - 2px;
  line-height: @baseLineHeight - 2px;
.btn-small [class^="icon-"] {
  margin-top: -1px;

.btn-mini {
  padding: 2px 6px;
  font-size: @baseFontSize - 2px;
  line-height: @baseLineHeight - 4px;

Alternate button styles

Provides extra visual weight and identifies the primary action in a set of buttons.

Indicates caution should be taken with this action

Indicates a dangerous or potentially negative action

Indicates a successful or positive action

Used as an alternate to the default styles

Alternate dark gray button, not tied to a semantic action or use

 // Set text color
.btn-inverse:hover {
  text-shadow: 0 -1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,.25);
  color: @white;
 // Provide *some* extra contrast for those who can get it
.btn-dark.active {
  color: rgba(255,255,255,.75);

 // Set the backgrounds

.btn-primary {
  .buttonBackground(@primaryButtonBackground, spin(@primaryButtonBackground, 20));

.btn-warning {
  .buttonBackground(lighten(@orange, 15%), @orange);

.btn-danger {
  .buttonBackground(#ee5f5b, #bd362f);

.btn-success {
  .buttonBackground(#62c462, #51a351);

.btn-info {
  .buttonBackground(#5bc0de, #2f96b4);

.btn-inverse {
  .buttonBackground(#454545, #262626);

 // Cross-browser Jank

input[type="submit"].btn {

  // Firefox 3.6 only I believe
  &::-moz-focus-inner {
    padding: 0;
    border: 0;

  // IE7 has some default padding on button controls
  *padding-top: 2px;
  *padding-bottom: 2px;
  &.large {
    *padding-top: 7px;
    *padding-bottom: 7px;
  &.small {
    *padding-top: 3px;
    *padding-bottom: 3px;