Prefer algorithmic layouts

Lens encourages building responsive layouts with less code following the algorithmic layout approach. What does this mean, let's look at the traditional method and how we can improve it.

The problem with media queries

The traditional approach for building responsive layouts is to write imperative/case-specific rules with media queries. This method requires us to specify the layout behavior manually for specific screen sizes which result in a design that covers only specific screen sizes ignoring everything in-between. It also forces us to write more code with multiple adjustments per screen size.

Algorithmic layouts — the browser doing the job for us

We can give some guidelines to the browser and let it arrange the elements depending on the available space. CSS flexbox and grid accept this type of guidelines. For example, we can tell flexbox to wrap its children when there is not enough horizontal space, or we can tell Grid to fit as many columns as possible in a container.

Watch Loom:
Simple algorithmic layout example

Algorithmic layouts with Lens layout components

This approach can be used with Lens layout components, specifically with Arrange (based on grid) and Split (based on flexbox) components.


See Layout recipes / Algorithmic responsive layouts

Responsive props

Some of the layout components props accept responsive values. These values are mapped to min-width breakpoints. This method is preferred when more fine-tuning is needed than the algorithmic layout approach can offer. Check the component's Props section to see which props allow responsive values.


Change the gap and columns depending on the screen size.

The responsive prop can be used with custom breakpoints.

Responsive text

Use the Text sizeMinMax prop for responsive text sizes. The size will grow from the minimum to maximum value while resizing the browser between the minimum and maximum breakpoints.

Additional tools

This tools are useful when we need to modify props that are not responsive.

Keep in mind that the following tools use javascript and will re-render nested components. In some cases this might compromise performance. Use this tools when this is not a concern.

useMedia hook

Media component