How to Use Z-index in TailwindCSS – [Complete Guide]

Are you tired of elements overlapping and not appearing in the desired order on your web page? Well, as you are using TailwindCSS, you can use powerful z-index utilities. In this complete guide, you’ll learn how to effectively use z-index in TailwindCSS to control the stack order of elements and overcome common challenges.

Understanding the Basics of Z-index

Z-index determines the order in which elements are displayed on the z-axis. It allows you to position elements in front or behind other elements. You can read the official documentation of z-index on mozzila docs.

Using Z-index in TailwindCSS

TailwindCSS simplifies the process of working with z-index by providing a range of utility classes. All the classes for z-index are prefixed with z-, that you can apply directly to your HTML elements.

To apply a specific z-index to an element, you can simply add the corresponding utility class to its HTML tag. Here is an example of using z-index in TailwindCSS.

Negative Z-index Values in TailwindCSS

Sometimes, you may need to position an element behind its parent or other elements. TailwindCSS allows you to use negative z-index values by prefixing the class name with a dash. Here is an example of using negative z-index in TailwindCSS.

You can read more about z-index classes on TailwindCSS documentation.

Why z-index is Not working in TailwindCSS

The z-index is a powerful tool, it’s important to understand that it might not always produce the desired outcome. Here are a few common reasons why z-index might not work as expected:

  1. Contextual Limitations: Z-index values work within the context of their parent elements. If an element has a lower z-index value than its parent, it cannot overlap other sibling elements that fall outside its parent’s stacking context.
  2. Positioning: Z-index only works on elements with a defined position property, such as relative, absolute, or fixed. Make sure you have correctly applied the appropriate positioning to your elements for z-index to take effect.
  3. Stacking Contexts: z-index is relative to the stacking context of an element. When dealing with nested elements, each parent element with a defined position establishes its own stacking context. Understanding the hierarchy of stacking contexts is crucial to achieving the desired visual result.

You can troubleshoot why z-index is not working in your TailwindCSS by reading the above 3 important limitations.


You can use z-{value} syntax to apply z-index classes in TailwindCSS. TailwindCSS also provides classes for negative z-index values which is very useful if you want to stack something behind other elements.

You can read more on center an absolute element on the screen with z-index. Y


Latest articles

Related articles