In CSS, ::after creates a pseudo-element that is the last child of the selected element. It is often used to add cosmetic content to an element with the content property. It is inline by default.

Try it

Note: The pseudo-elements generated by ::before and ::after are contained by the element's formatting box, and thus don't apply to replaced elements such as <img>, or to <br> elements.


::after {
  /* ... */

Note: CSS introduced the ::after notation (with two colons) to distinguish pseudo-classes from pseudo-elements. For backward compatibility, browsers also accept :after, introduced earlier.


Simple usage

Let's create two classes: one for boring paragraphs and one for exciting ones. We can use these classes to add pseudo-elements to the end of paragraphs.


<p class="boring-text">Here is some plain old boring text.</p>
<p>Here is some normal text that is neither boring nor exciting.</p>
<p class="exciting-text">Contributing to MDN is easy and fun.</p>


.exciting-text::after {
  content: " <- EXCITING!";
  color: green;

.boring-text::after {
  content: " <- BORING";
  color: red;


Decorative example

We can style text or images in the content property almost any way we want.


<span class="ribbon">Look at the orange box after this text. </span>


.ribbon {
  background-color: #5bc8f7;

.ribbon::after {
  content: "This is a fancy orange box.";
  background-color: #ffba10;
  border-color: black;
  border-style: dotted;



This example uses ::after, in conjunction with the attr() CSS expression and a data-descr custom data attribute, to create tooltips. No JavaScript is required!

We can also support keyboard users with this technique, by adding a tabindex of 0 to make each span keyboard focusable, and using a CSS :focus selector. This shows how flexible ::before and ::after can be, though for the most accessible experience a semantic disclosure widget created in some other way (such as with details and summary elements) is likely to be more appropriate.


  Here we have some
  <span tabindex="0" data-descr="collection of words and punctuation">
  with a few
  <span tabindex="0" data-descr="small popups that appear when hovering">


span[data-descr] {
  position: relative;
  text-decoration: underline;
  color: #00f;
  cursor: help;

span[data-descr]:focus::after {
  content: attr(data-descr);
  position: absolute;
  left: 0;
  top: 24px;
  min-width: 200px;
  border: 1px #aaaaaa solid;
  border-radius: 10px;
  background-color: #ffffcc;
  padding: 12px;
  color: #000000;
  font-size: 14px;
  z-index: 1;


Accessibility concerns

Using an ::after pseudo-element to add content is discouraged, as it is not reliably accessible to screen readers.


CSS Pseudo-Elements Module Level 4
# generated-content

Browser compatibility

BCD tables only load in the browser

See also