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Published on: 1/6/2017

10+ Best Tools and Resources to Compile & Manage SASS, LESS, and Stylus – CSS Preprocessors

All websites consist of a bunch or more codes of javascript, PHP and CSS as well. CSS is a language which presents the color, layout, and fonts of a web page. CSS can be used with an XML-based markup language. SASS (Syntactically Awesome Style Sheets) is mainly an extension of CSS. For using variables, nested rules, and more SASS is very much helpful. LESS is also part of CSS which allows you to make CSS more maintainable, extendable and themeable. LESS allows you to use variables, functions, and other many stuff. Stylus (Stylesheet Language) is also the part of CSS which is extended by SASS and LESS. It is the most used preprocessor syntax. Stylus allows you to use defined variables. Stylus variables are similar to Python variables.

SASS adds the power, simplicity and elegance of the basic language of CSS. It is fully CSS-compatible. SASS has an extension that has variables, nesting, and more other things. So there is no need of using CSS fully. SASS has many useful and helpful functions for manipulating colors. It has fully customizable output. LESS also has the ability to use nested syntax. It has the ability to define variables and mixins. It allows using mathematical functions. LESS has operational functions and it can join multiple files. Stylus has also the same ability of SASS and LESS. Stylus is much same as python.

This topic will cover the best compiler for SASS, LESS, and Stylus. There are many compilers for SASS. But not all the compilers are good for compiling these languages. SASS is very good for showing animation and color composition of a web page. Compilers help to transform SASS to CSS code. Stylus adds additional functionality to CSS like adding functions, arithmetic operators. They are written in node.js, they run on node systems. When the browser requests the website, node triggers their compiler (parser or translator to be exact) and spits out the pure CSS. Browsers can’t read SASS, LESS or Stylus. They are compiled on the server side like PHP. For that compiler is needed.

10+ Best Tools and Resources to Compile & Manage SASS, LESS, and Stylus – CSS Preprocessors:


Koala is one of the authentic names of GUI applications for Less, Sass, Compass and CoffeeScript compilation. It can help the web designer and developers to use them more efficiently and soundly. The tool can run in linux, windows and mac also.



Scout is a cross platform which is open source and it runs both SASS and Compass out of the box. This compiler converts code SASS to CSS. Scouts have the ability to converts all code of SASS. This compiler has the most of the features of any paid compiler. It has self-contained Ruby environment.


Winless-Window GUI for less.js

Winless is another important window for GUI for Less.js. It is one of the best tools for the Windows using web-developer. It can find out the less and css files from the parent folder easily in a short time.



Prepros is eligible to compile LESS, STYLUS, MARKDOWN and more. This site has a nice UI that will charm your eye. It has browser refresh capability. This has also built in server, image optimization, and FTP support development. It comes with unlimited free trial.


CodeKit (Paid)

CodeKit is much more than a compiler. It compiles LESS as well as SASS. It can also compile JavaScript. It is well documented. It is free only for LESS compiler but if you want to use it as another compiler then you have to pay. It only runs on Mac OS.



This is the simplest but effective tool for LESS files. It can show basic error notification, auto-compiling and file monitoring. It compiles LESS to CSS code and automatic CSS prefixing.



Sassmeister lets you compile your code without installing Ruby. It allows you to try the core code of SASS and mixins libraries. You don’t need to set up SASS on your system. Sassmeister has the latest and stable version of SASS. This tool has different formats like compact, compressed, nested and expanded.



This site is a useful beginner as well as experts. It brings you the all latest news of SASS. It has a tutorial for learning and coding about SASS. This site is regularly updated by the contributors.


Compass- CSS Authoring Framework

Compass is an open-source CSS authoring Framework. This compiler has experience cleaner markup. It has no presentational classes. Compass make CSS easy. It has also built in ruby. So you don’t need to set it up manually. It has all the power of SASS and comes with other utilities.


LiveReload- Strong and Stable

LiveRelaod has not appealed UI but it has an auto compiling capability. It is enough strong to compile any kind of LESS code to CSS code. It is now available on MAC OS but development is working on windows as well. It has refresh capability as well. Windows version of this app is free now.


Compass.app- GUI compatible

This tool is built on SASS. This is GUI compilation tool which can convert Stylus to CSS. It comes with a built-in server and also refreshes capability. It is available on Mac, Windows, and Linux.


All these tools are great for compiling codes. They are much more effective and you can use most of them for free. All these sites offer you an easier UI so you will find it easy to use. You don’t have to worry much about compiling, getting the code. Just use these tools and you will know yourself.

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