The ability to set the background color on an HTML page has been around almost since the first Web browsers. However, with CSS you can define the background color, not only for the entire page, but also for individual elements using the background- color property. Unlike the color property, though, background colors are applied only to the element, and are not directly inherited by its children. That said, by the very fact they are within the parent, they will be set against that background. To define the background color of an element: 1.