CSS

# Hex to RGB to HSL in Deno

Lately, I’ve been working a lot with HSL, especially after reading Refactoring UI.

While there is nothing wrong with Hex, HSL allows me to refine my colors easily.

## How to Turn Hex into HSL?

In order to turn Hex into HSL, we need to do a two step process:

1. Transform Hex into RGB
2. Transform RGB into HSL

Hex is based on the hexadecimal number system, hence the name.

Most of us will be familiar with the decimal system. It is 10-based. In order words, it only has 10 numbers: 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9. That’s the way we interact with numbers in our daily life.

The hexadecimal number system is a bit different. It’s based on a 16 numbers system (_hexa_decimal).

The numbers 0 to 9 are represented by the numbers 0 to 9, like in the decimal system. But the numbers 10 to 15 are represented by letters:

A - 10 B - 11 C - 12 D - 13 E - 14 F - 15

Note that 16 doesn’t exist, since we count from 0, there are only 16 numbers.

## Describing Colors with Numbers: RGB

Any color can be broken down into three parts RGB: Red, Green, and Blue. The values of each color can range from 0 (black) to 255 (white). By combining these three colors, we have access to over 16 million colors.

A hex code is simply a notation to define the levels of Red, Green, and Blue in the RGB color notation.

The first two characters after the `#` sign represent the level of Red, the following two pairs represent respectively the levels of Green and Blue.

So in `#AA223F`, we have:

• Red: `11`
• Green: `AA`
• Blue: `3F`

There is a catch: `11` in hexadecimal is not equal to `11` in decimal!

## From Hexadecimals to Decimals: a Bit of Maths

To calculate a number, we sum each number, multiplied by its position to the power of the base number.

Phew, that sounds complex - but it’s not. When using decimals, we don’t really think about it, we just do it.

To read `11` in decimals, the way real way to calculate it would be: 1*10^1+1*10^0 = 1 * 10 + 1 = 11

Well, in hexadecimal we can do the same thing, except the base will be 16, not 10. So 11 becomes: 1*1^16 + 1*16^0 = 16 + 1 = 17!

In the same way, AA would be FF: 15*1^16 + 16*16^0 = 240 + 15 = 255!

## Hex2RGB

Knowing what we know now, we can write the first part of the problem, going from Hex to RGB notation for our colors.

``````function hexToHSL(hex:string) {
const result = /^#?([a-f\d]{2})([a-f\d]{2})([a-f\d]{2})\$/i.exec(hex);
const [r,g,b] = result;
var max = Math.max(r, g, b), min = Math.min(r, g, b);
var h, s, l = (max + min) / 2;
if(max == min){
h = s = 0; // achromatic
}else{
var d = max - min;
s = l > 0.5 ? d / (2 - max - min) : d / (max + min);
switch(max){
case r: h = (g - b) / d + (g < b ? 6 : 0); break;
case g: h = (b - r) / d + 2; break;
case b: h = (r - g) / d + 4; break;
}
h /= 6;
}
var HSL = new Object();
HSL['h']=h;
HSL['s']=s;
HSL['l']=l;
return `\${Math.floor(h*360)}, \${Math.floor(s*100)}%,\${Math.floor(l*100)}%`;
}``````

See you soon 👋

Alo