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Styling Sort Icons Using Font Awesome for Primefaces' Data Table

So far, Primefaces has used image sprites for displaying the sort icons. This leads to a problem if we want to make a different style for these icons; for example, I would make the icon "arrow up" more blurry at the first time the table loading because I want to highlight the icon "arrow down". I found a way that I can replace these icons with Font Awesome icons.

We will use "CSS Pseudo-classes" to achieve it. The hardest thing here is that we should handle displaying icons in different cases. There is a case both "arrow up" and "arrow down" showing and other case is only one of these icons is shown.

.ui-sortable-column-icon.ui-icon.ui-icon-carat-2-n-s {
    background-image: none;
    margin-left: 5px;
    font-size: 1.1666em;
    position: relative;

.ui-sortable-column-icon.ui-icon.ui-icon-carat-2-n-s:not(.ui-icon-triangle-1-s)::before {
    content: "\f106";
    font-family: "FontAwesome";
    position: absolute;
    top: -2px;
    color: rgba(0,0,0,0.4);

.ui-sortable-column-icon.ui-icon.ui-icon-carat-2-n-s:not(.ui-icon-triangle-1-n)::after {
    content: "\f107";
    font-family: "FontAwesome";
    position: absolute;
    top: 5px;
    color: rgba(0,0,0,1);

.ui-sortable-column-icon.ui-icon.ui-icon-carat-2-n-s.ui-icon-triangle-1-n::before {
    color: rgba(0,0,0,1);

Hope it useful when you get the same issue. ;)


  1. the blog was quite interesting and i loved working on this concept. keep doing this work so that i would work a lot on this.

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