What Is Position Relative Css

CSS Programming

Position relative is a CSS property that allows you to position an element relative to its normal position in the document flow. It’s like giving an element a temporary position that doesn’t affect the other elements around it. In this article, I will dive deep into the details of the position relative property and share some personal insights.

When you apply the position relative property to an element, you can use the top, right, bottom, and left properties to move the element from its original position. The element is moved relative to its normal position, so the space it originally occupied remains reserved, and other elements are not affected by its movement. This makes it useful for creating layout adjustments without disrupting the flow of the document.

One interesting thing about position relative is that it establishes a new positioning context for its child elements. This means that any child elements with position absolute or position fixed will be positioned relative to the parent element with position relative. It provides a way to create complex layouts and position elements precisely within them.

Let’s take a practical example to understand this better. Imagine you have a webpage with a header at the top and a sidebar on the left. You want to position a logo image inside the header, but slightly offset to the right. Instead of modifying the layout or structure of the webpage, you can simply apply position relative to the header element and then use the left property to move the logo image to the desired position.

.header {
position: relative;

.logo {
position: absolute;
left: 20px;
top: 5px;

With this CSS code, the logo image will be positioned 20 pixels from the left and 5 pixels from the top of the header element. The rest of the page layout remains unaffected, and the logo is positioned exactly where we want it to be.

Position relative can also be used in combination with other CSS properties like z-index to control the stacking order of elements. By changing the z-index value, you can bring an element forward or send it backward in relation to other elements on the page. This can be handy when dealing with overlapping elements or creating layered effects.

It’s important to note that position relative does not take the element out of the normal document flow like position absolute or position fixed. The element still takes up space in the document flow, and other elements will interact with it as if it were in its original position, just with the added ability to be positioned relative to that original position.


Position relative is a powerful CSS property that allows you to position elements relative to their normal position without affecting other elements. It enables precise control over the layout and positioning of elements on a webpage. By using the top, right, bottom, and left properties, you can adjust the placement of elements, and by establishing a new positioning context for child elements, you can create complex layouts. When used wisely, position relative can greatly enhance the design and interactivity of a webpage.