SASS vs. LESS

Published 1 year 10 months ago on May 17, 2012 — 2 min read

SASS vs. LESS | CSS-Tricks.

I’m also often asked “which is better?” when it comes to LESS and Sass. I started working with Sass roughly a year ago as I was a holdout for some time. At first I simply assumed (like many) that it only worked with Ruby on Rails projects. I was quickly corrected on that. Then I fell back to my assumption that preprocessors like that would abstract me too far from the styles I was writing and I’d end up with this bloated junk that’s at least twice the size it would be had I written it by hand. The prospect of a preproccessor cheapened the craft for me.

That was until I started using it. The first few projects were a bit iffy, but I’d be hard pressed to not use Sass on a project today. When written properly, it’s going to save you time, keystrokes, bandwidth, and stress.

When I first dove in, the fact that there were these two competing projects (LESS and Sass) was also a turnoff. After a bit of research I was a bit turned off by the client side processing of LESS, even though that was just an option. Super petty I know, but that was one of the reasons I went with Sass out of the gate. I’m glad I did for a number of reasons. They’re well explained in Chris’ article, but a huge reason I side with Sass is Compass.

Compass is something I sought out to write myself before knowing it existed. The concept of a mixin library you can consistently use project-to-project was a huge eye-opener for me and I ended up starting down a path that Compass had already done for me.

There are tons of other great features in both projects, but it’s surely worth getting the rundown in this article.

There's a conversation brewing

  1. The few projects I’ve worked with SASS on have been a nuisance to say the least. I too felt that it positioned me farther away from my styles and it almost seemed pointless. I don’t think I’ve really experienced it’s raw power, and I think you’re right about saving time long term.

    One thing I did run into trouble was getting into the habit of running a sass –watch on the directory that housed the .SASS files. I wrote an alfred script for it to make it easier, though still from time to time I sometimes forget.

    This has definitely inspired me to take a better look at SASS and maybe get a library going on git.

    • Yeah, getting used to having Sass watch your compile directories can be infuriating at first when you’re saving changes and nothing is happening. I’d definitely suggest that you check out CodeKit, a GUI app that very nicely will watch your Sass directories for you. That’s just the tip of the iceberg; that app does tons more awesome stuff.

By all means, contribute

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Published May 17th, 2012

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