Learn How to Create a Pill Navigation Menu with CSS

Are you looking to enhance your website’s navigation menu with a sleek and modern design? Creating a pill navigation menu using CSS can be a great solution. In this article, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of building a stylish and functional pill navigation menu with code snippets examples. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced web developer, this guide will help you create an impressive navigation menu that engages your users effectively.

1. Introduction

In this digital age, user experience plays a crucial role in determining the success of a website. Navigation menus are essential components that allow users to explore different sections of a website conveniently. A pill navigation menu is a trendy and eye-catching option that can improve user engagement and add a touch of modernity to your website.

2. Understanding Pill Navigation Menus

Pill navigation menus are horizontal bars that typically contain navigation links. They are called “pill” menus due to their rounded edges, resembling pill capsules. These menus are often used to highlight key sections or pages of a website and work exceptionally well in minimalistic and contemporary designs.

3. Setting Up the HTML Structure

Before we delve into CSS styling, we need to set up the HTML structure for our pill navigation menu. We will use a basic HTML unordered list (ul) with list items (li) to create the menu items. Each list item will contain an anchor (a) tag to link to different pages or sections of the website.

<!-- Sample HTML structure for the pill navigation menu -->
<ul class="pill-menu">
  <li><a href="#home">Home</a></li>
  <li><a href="#about">About</a></li>
  <li><a href="#services">Services</a></li>
  <li><a href="#portfolio">Portfolio</a></li>
  <li><a href="#contact">Contact</a></li>

4. Creating the Basic CSS Styles

Now that we have set up the HTML structure, let’s apply some basic CSS styles to turn our list into a pill navigation menu. We will define the styles for the pill-menu class and the anchor tags.

/* CSS styles for the pill navigation menu */
.pill-menu {
  list-style: none;
  padding: 0;
  margin: 0;
  display: flex;
  background-color: #f2f2f2;
  border-radius: 30px;
  overflow: hidden;

.pill-menu li {
  margin: 0;

.pill-menu li a {
  display: block;
  padding: 15px 20px;
  text-decoration: none;
  color: #333;
  font-weight: bold;

.pill-menu li a:hover {
  background-color: #ddd;

5. Adding Animations for Hover Effects

To make our pill navigation menu more interactive, let’s add a smooth animation when users hover over the menu items.

/* CSS styles for hover animations */
.pill-menu li a {
  /* ... (existing styles) ... */
  transition: background-color 0.3s ease;

6. Making the Menu Responsive

In today’s mobile-driven world, it’s essential to ensure our pill navigation menu looks great on all devices. Let’s make our menu responsive by adjusting its appearance for different screen sizes using media queries.

/* CSS styles for responsive design */
@media screen and (max-width: 768px) {
  .pill-menu {
    flex-direction: column;
  .pill-menu li {
    margin-bottom: 10px;

7. Fine-Tuning and Customization

Now that we have the basic pill navigation menu set up, feel free to customize it further to match your website’s theme. You can adjust the background color, font size, and other styles to create a unique and visually appealing menu.

8. Testing and Troubleshooting

Before implementing the pill navigation menu on your live website, it’s crucial to thoroughly test it across different browsers and devices. Ensure that all links work correctly and the menu maintains its appearance without any glitches.

9. Conclusion

Congratulations! You have successfully learned how to create a pill navigation menu with CSS. By following the steps and code examples provided in this article, you can enhance your website’s navigation and deliver a seamless user experience. Feel free to experiment with various styles and colors to create a pill menu that perfectly complements your website’s design.


What is a pill navigation menu?

A pill navigation menu is a horizontal bar with rounded edges that contains navigation links and resembles pill capsules.

Why should I use a pill navigation menu?

A pill navigation menu adds a modern touch to your website and helps highlight key sections, enhancing user engagement.

Can I customize the pill menu’s appearance?

Absolutely! You can customize the background color, font size, and other styles to match your website’s theme.

Is the pill navigation menu mobile-friendly?

Yes, you can make the pill menu responsive using media queries to ensure it looks great on all devices.

How can I test the pill navigation menu?

You can test the menu by trying it on different browsers and devices, ensuring all links work correctly.

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