Does placeholder text need to meet color contrast requirements?

Question

Placeholder text for form inputs are often times very light. Does placeholder text need to meet contrast requirements?

Answer

Placeholder text must meet a color contrast requirement of at least 4.5:1 contrast ratio, or 3:1 contrast ratio if its large (larger than 18px, or 14px bold) to satisfy WCAG 2.0 AA requirements. To quote the W3.org success criteria 1.4.3, "minimum contrast success criterion (1.4.3) applies to text in the page, including placeholder text".

Looking to learn more about how to test an elements color contrast, click here!

Additionally check out our WCAG color contrast checker!