User Experience Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for user experience researchers and experts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Im styling a flyout menu. Im going to style the active link and the hover state, and im wondering if it could be confusing to have them styled in the same way?

share|improve this question

For me, the logical connection between the two would justify making both :hover and :active states looking the same, since 'hover' state shows the implied look of the element once it's been clicked.

The only confusion I could think of, is when the visitor hovers an element next to an active one. But then again - hover state is attached to a mouse cursor, which is in nearly constant movement, followed by your sight, and therefore you can observe the changes it makes, making the confusion quite unlikely to happen.

Going off from the philosophical tone however, if you truly wish to distinguish somehow between the two, I'd suggest introducing a single difference in styling between 'hover' and 'active'.

As an example making hover element's background color different from :link state, while :active having both background and font color different.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.