How to Disable a Link Using CSS: A Step-by-Step Guide

In the world of web development, controlling the behavior of links is crucial for creating a user-friendly website. Particularly, there might be instances where you need to disable a link to prevent users from clicking it. This article explores how to disable a link using only CSS, a common requirement for web developers and designers.

In web design, disabling a link is often necessary to improve user experience or guide users through a specific workflow. For example, in a pagination system, you might want to disable the link to the current page. Similarly, in a navigation menu, the link to the current section could be disabled to prevent redundant reloading.

CSS is a powerful tool for controlling the appearance and behavior of HTML elements. By using CSS, we can change how a link looks and behaves without altering the HTML structure. This method is clean, efficient, and widely supported across modern browsers.

Let’s dive into how you can use CSS to disable a link. We’ll create a simple example where links with the class .inactive-link are disabled.

Step 1: Creating the HTML Structure

First, let’s set up our HTML:

<a href="" class="inactive-link">Inactive Link</a>
<a href="">Active Link</a>

Next, we’ll write the CSS to disable the .inactive-link:

.inactive-link {
  pointer-events: none;
  cursor: not-allowed;
  color: grey;
  text-decoration: line-through;

This CSS snippet ensures that clicking on the link with the inactive-link class does nothing. The pointer-events: none property is key here, as it prevents all click actions on the link.

Browser Compatibility and Considerations

While the pointer-events property works in most modern browsers, it’s important to check its compatibility, especially if you’re supporting older browsers. For Internet Explorer, you might need to use JavaScript as a fallback.


Disabling a link using CSS is straightforward and effective. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can enhance your web pages’ usability and guide your users more effectively.


How do I disable a link in CSS?

Use the pointer-events: none and cursor: default CSS properties to disable a link.

Can I disable a link without JavaScript?

Yes, you can disable a link using only CSS by setting pointer-events to none.

Is disabling a link with CSS fully supported in all browsers?

While widely supported, check compatibility for older browsers, as some may require JavaScript as a fallback.

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