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Unveiling the Magic: DOM Manipulation in Angular vs. React

Crafting Dynamic UIs: The Angular and React Way of DOM Manipulation


DOM manipulation is a crucial aspect of front-end development, allowing developers to dynamically update the content and appearance of web pages. In modern web development, frameworks like Angular and React have simplified and optimized this process, offering efficient ways to interact with the Document Object Model (DOM). In this article, we'll explore how DOM manipulation is handled in both Angular and React, comparing their approaches, syntax, and best practices.

Angular: Directives and Data Binding

Angular employs a robust system of directives and data binding to manage DOM manipulation efficiently. Directives are markers on a DOM element that tell Angular to attach a specified behavior to that element or even transform it and its children. Angular offers two-way data binding, which means any changes in the model state are immediately reflected in the view and vice versa.

Example: Angular Directive

import { Directive, ElementRef, HostListener } from '@angular/core';

  selector: '[appHighlight]'
export class HighlightDirective {
  constructor(private el: ElementRef) { }

  @HostListener('mouseenter') onMouseEnter() {

  @HostListener('mouseleave') onMouseLeave() {

  private highlight(color: string | null) { = color;
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In this example, the HighlightDirective is a custom directive that changes the background color of an element when the mouse enters or leaves it.

React: Virtual DOM and JSX

React introduces the concept of the Virtual DOM, a lightweight copy of the actual DOM. When changes are made to the UI, React first updates the Virtual DOM, then calculates the most efficient way to update the actual DOM. This approach minimizes DOM manipulation, resulting in improved performance.

React also utilizes JSX, a syntax extension that allows developers to write HTML directly within JavaScript. This makes it easier to create and manipulate DOM elements within React components.

Example: React Component

import React, { useState } from 'react';

function Counter() {
  const [count, setCount] = useState(0);

  return (
      <p>Count: {count}</p>
      <button onClick={() => setCount(count + 1)}>Increment</button>

export default Counter;
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In this example, the Counter component maintains a count state that is updated when the button is clicked. React efficiently updates only the necessary parts of the DOM to reflect the new count value.


While both Angular and React offer powerful tools for DOM manipulation, they differ in their approaches and syntax. Angular relies heavily on directives and two-way data binding, making it suitable for complex, data-driven applications. React, on the other hand, emphasizes the use of the Virtual DOM and JSX, providing a more lightweight and flexible solution for building user interfaces.

FAQ Section

Q: Is Angular or React better for DOM manipulation?

A: The choice between Angular and React depends on the specific requirements of your project. Angular's two-way data binding and directives make it well-suited for complex applications with extensive DOM manipulation needs. React's Virtual DOM and JSX offer a more lightweight and flexible approach, making it ideal for building dynamic user interfaces.

Q: Can I use both Angular and React together in a project?

A: While it's technically possible to use both Angular and React within the same project, it's generally not recommended due to potential conflicts and complexity. It's better to choose one framework and stick with it for consistency and maintainability.


DOM manipulation is a fundamental aspect of front-end development, and frameworks like Angular and React provide efficient ways to interact with the DOM. Whether you choose Angular with its directives and data binding or React with its Virtual DOM and JSX, understanding how each framework handles DOM manipulation is essential for building modern web applications efficiently.

This article provides a comprehensive overview of DOM manipulation in Angular and React, covering their approaches, syntax, and best practices. Through detailed examples and comparisons, readers gain a deeper understanding of how these popular frameworks handle DOM manipulation to create dynamic and interactive user interfaces.

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