Skip to content


Provides positioning data for an arrow element (triangle or caret) inside the floating element, such that it appears to be pointing toward the center of the reference element.

Data Provider
import {arrow} from '@floating-ui/dom';

This is useful to add an additional visual cue to the floating element about which element it is referring to.

Scroll horizontally


The layout box of the arrow element should be a square with equal width and height. Inner or pseudo-elements may have a different aspect ratio.

Given an arrow element inside your floating element:

  Floating element
  <div id="arrow"></div>
#arrow {
  position: absolute;

Pass the element to the arrow() middleware and assign the dynamic styles using the coordinates data available in middlewareData.arrow:

const arrowEl = document.querySelector('#arrow');
computePosition(referenceEl, floatingEl, {
  middleware: [arrow({element: arrowEl})],
}).then(({middlewareData}) => {
  if (middlewareData.arrow) {
    const {x, y} = middlewareData.arrow;
    Object.assign(, {
      left: x != null ? `${x}px` : '',
      top: y != null ? `${y}px` : '',

This middleware is designed only to position the arrow on one axis (x for 'top' or 'bottom' placements). The other axis is considered “static”, which means it does not need to be positioned dynamically.

You may however want to position both axes statically in the following scenario:

  • The reference element is either wider or taller than the floating element;
  • The floating element is using an edge alignment (-start or -end placement).


To help you understand how this middleware works, here is a visualization tutorial on CodeSandbox.


arrow() should generally be placed toward the end of your middleware array, after shift() (if used).


To know which side the floating element is actually placed at for the static axis offset of the arrow, the placement is returned:

computePosition(referenceEl, floatingEl, {
  placement: 'top',
  middleware: [flip(), arrow({element: arrowEl})],
}).then((data) => {
  // The final placement can be 'bottom' or 'top'
  const placement = data.placement;


These are the options you can pass to arrow().

interface ArrowOptions {
  element: Element;
  padding?: Padding;


default: undefined

This is the arrow element to be positioned, which must be a child of the floating element.

  element: document.querySelector('#arrow'),


default: 0

This describes the padding between the arrow and the edges of the floating element. If your floating element has border-radius, this will prevent it from overflowing the corners.

  padding: 5, // stop 5px from the edges of the floating element

Deriving options from state

You can derive the options from the middleware lifecycle state:

arrow((state) => ({
  padding: state.rects.reference.width,


The following data is available in middlewareData.arrow:

interface Data {
  x?: number;
  y?: number;
  centerOffset: number;


This property exists if the arrow should be offset on the x-axis.


This property exists if the arrow should be offset on the y-axis.


This property describes where the arrow actually is relative to where it could be if it were allowed to overflow the floating element in order to stay centered to the reference element.

This enables two useful things:

  • You can hide the arrow if it can’t stay centered to the reference, i.e. centerOffset !== 0.
  • You can interpolate the shape of the arrow (e.g. skew it) so it stays centered as best as possible.