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Create an assertion. Assertions are automatically retried until they pass or time out.

An alias of .and()

Note: .should() assumes you are already familiar with core concepts such as assertions


.should(chainers, value)
.should(chainers, method, value)


Correct Usage

cy.get('.error').should('be.empty')                    // Assert that '.error' is empty
cy.contains('Login').should('be.visible')              // Assert that el is visible
cy.wrap({ foo: 'bar' }).its('foo').should('eq', 'bar') // Assert the 'foo' property equals 'bar'

Incorrect Usage

cy.should('eq', '42')   // Errors, cannot be chained off 'cy'


chainers (String)

Any valid chainer that comes from Chai or Chai-jQuery or Sinon-Chai.

value (String)

Value to assert against chainer.

method (String)

A method to be called on the chainer.

callbackFn (Function)

Pass a function that can have any number of explicit assertions within it. Whatever was passed to the function is what is yielded.


In most cases, .should() yields the same subject it was given from the previous command.
  .get('nav')                       // yields <nav>
  .should('be.visible')             // yields <nav>

However, some chainers change the subject. In the example below, the second .should() yields the string sans-serif because the chainer have.css, 'font-family' changes the subject.

  .get('nav')                          // yields <nav>
  .should('be.visible')                // yields <nav>
  .should('have.css', 'font-family')   // yields 'sans-serif'
  .and('match', /serif/)               // yields 'sans-serif'



Assert the checkbox is disabled


The current DOM element is yielded

cy.get('option:first').should('be.selected').then(($option) => {
  // $option is yielded


Assert the class is ‘form-horizontal’

cy.get('form').should('have.class', 'form-horizontal')

Assert the value is not ‘Jane’

cy.get('input').should('not.have.value', 'Jane')

The current subject is yielded

cy.get('button').should('have.id', 'new-user').then(($button) => {
  // $button is yielded

Method and Value

Assert the href is equal to ‘/users’

// have.attr comes from chai-jquery
cy.get('#header a').should('have.attr', 'href', '/users')


Assert an input is focused after button click

cy.get('#input-receives-focus').should('have.focus') // equivalent to should('be.focused')


Passing a function to .should() enables you to make multiple assertions on the yielded subject. This also gives you the opportunity to massage what you’d like to assert on.

Be sure not to include any code that has side effects in your callback function. The callback function will be retried over and over again until no assertions within it throw.

Verify length, content, and classes from multiple <p>

  <p class="text-primary">Hello World</p>
  <p class="text-danger">You have an error</p>
  <p class="text-default">Try again later</p>
  .should(($p) => {
    // should have found 3 elements

    // make sure the first contains some text content
    expect($p.first()).to.contain('Hello World')

    // use jquery's map to grab all of their classes
    // jquery's map returns a new jquery object
    const classes = $p.map((i, el) => {
      return Cypress.$(el).attr('class')

    // call classes.get() to make this a plain array

Warning Any value returned from a .should() callback function will be ignored. The original subject will be yielded to the next command.

  .should(($p) => {

    return 'foo'
  .then(($p) => {
    // the argument $p will be the 3 elements, not "foo"

Assert class name contains heading-

<div class="docs-header">
  <div class="main-abc123 heading-xyz987">Introduction</div>
  // .should(cb) callback function will be retried
  .should(($div) => {

    const className = $div[0].className

  // .then(cb) callback is not retried,
  // it either passes or fails
  .then(($div) => {

You can even throw your own errors from the callback function.

  .should(($div) => {
    if ($div.length !== 1) {
      // you can throw your own errors
      throw new Error('Did not find 1 element')

    const className = $div[0].className

    if (!className.match(/heading-/)) {
      throw new Error(`No class "heading-" in ${className}`)

Assert text content of 3 elements

Example below first asserts that there are 3 elements, and then checks the text content of each one.

<ul class="connectors-list">
  <li>Walk the dog</li>
  <li>Feed the cat</li>
  <li>Write JavaScript</li>
cy.get('.connectors-list > li').should(($lis) => {
  expect($lis.eq(0)).to.contain('Walk the dog')
  expect($lis.eq(1)).to.contain('Feed the cat')
  expect($lis.eq(2)).to.contain('Write JavaScript')

Read Cypress should callback blog post to see more variations of the above example.

For clarity you can pass a string message as a second argument to any expect assertion, see Chai#expect.

cy.get('.connectors-list > li').should(($lis) => {
  expect($lis, '3 items').to.have.length(3)
  expect($lis.eq(0), 'first item').to.contain('Walk the dog')
  expect($lis.eq(1), 'second item').to.contain('Feed the cat')
  expect($lis.eq(2), 'third item').to.contain('Write JavaScript')

These string messages will be shown in the Command Log giving each assertion more context.

Expect assertions with messages

Compare text values of two elements

The example below gets the text contained within one element and saves it in a closure variable. Then the test gets the text in another element and asserts that the two text values are the same after normalizing.

<div class="company-details">
  <div class="title">Acme Developers</div>
  <div class="identifier">ACMEDEVELOPERS</div>
const normalizeText = (s) => s.replace(/\s/g, '').toLowerCase()

// will keep text from title element
let titleText

  .then(($title) => {
    // save text from the first element
    titleText = normalizeText($title.text())

  .should(($identifier) => {
    // we can massage text before comparing
    const idText = normalizeText($identifier.text())

    // text from the title element should already be set
    expect(idText, 'ID').to.equal(titleText)

Multiple Assertions

Chaining multiple assertions

Cypress makes it easier to chain assertions together.

In this example we use .and() which is identical to .should().

// our subject is not changed by our first assertion,
// so we can continue to use DOM based assertions
cy.get('option:first').should('be.selected').and('have.value', 'Metallica')

Wait until the assertions pass

Cypress won’t resolve your commands until all of its assertions pass.

// Application Code
$('button').click(() => {
  $button = $(this)

  setTimeout(() => {
  }, 1000)
  .should('have.class', 'active')
  .and('not.have.class', 'inactive')


Effect on default DOM assertions

When you chain .should() on a DOM-based command, the default .should('exist') assertion is skipped. This may result in an unexpected behavior such as negative assertions passing even when the element doesn’t exist in the DOM. See Default Assertions for more.


How do I know which assertions change the subject and which keep it the same?

The chainers that come from Chai or Chai-jQuery will always document what they return.

Using a callback function will not change what is yielded

Whatever is returned in the function is ignored. Cypress always forces the command to yield the value from the previous cy command’s yield (which in the example below is <button>)

  .get('button').should(($button) => {
    expect({ foo: 'bar' }).to.deep.eq({ foo: 'bar' })

    return { foo: 'bar' } // return is ignored, .should() yields <button>
  .then(($button) => {
    // do anything we want with <button>


What’s the difference between .then() and .should()/.and()?

Using .then() allows you to use the yielded subject in a callback function and should be used when you need to manipulate some values or do some actions.

When using a callback function with .should() or .and(), on the other hand, there is special logic to rerun the callback function until no assertions throw within it. You should be careful of side affects in a .should() or .and() callback function that you would not want performed multiple times.



  • .should() requires being chained off a previous command.


  • .should() will continue to retry its specified assertions until it times out.

cy.get('input', { timeout: 10000 }).should('have.value', '10')
// timeout here will be passed down to the '.should()'
// and it will retry for up to 10 secs
cy.get('input', { timeout: 10000 }).should(($input) => {
  // timeout here will be passed down to the '.should()'
  // unless an assertion throws earlier,
  // ALL of the assertions will retry for up to 10 secs

Command Log

Assert that there should be 8 children in a nav

cy.get('.left-nav>.nav').children().should('have.length', 8)

The commands above will display in the Command Log as:

Command Log should

When clicking on assert within the command log, the console outputs the following:

Console Log should


Version Changes
0.11.4 Allows callback function argument
< 0.3.3 .should() command added

See also