How to Remove Leading and Trailing Characters from a String in Javascript

In this tutorial, you will learn how to remove leading and trailing characters from a string in javascript. The leading character refers to the very fist character and the trailing character refers to the very first character. For a newbie developer, it can be a bit tricky to remove the leading and trailing character from a string.

There are numerous ways to remove the leading and trailing characters from a string. We are going to use one of the easiest solutions which involve the usage of the substring() method. A string consists of multiple characters and these characters in a string have a 0-based index. With the help of substring() method, we can get the rest of the string after trimming the first  and last characters.

In the following example, we have one global variable that holds a string. Upon click of a button, we will remove the leading  and trailing characters from the string and display the result on the screen.  Please have a look over the code example and the steps given below.


  • We have 3 elements in the HTML file (div, button, and h1). The div element is just a wrapper for the rest of the elements.
  • The innerText for the button element is “Get” and for the h1 element, it is “Result”.
  • We have done some basic styling using CSS and added the link to our style.css stylesheet inside the head element.
  • We have also included our javascript file script.js with a script tag at the bottom.
<!DOCTYPE html>
<html lang="en">

  <meta charset="UTF-8">
  <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1.0">
  <meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="ie=edge">
  <link rel="stylesheet" href="style.css">


  <div class="container">    

  <script src="script.js"></script>

.container {        
    text-align: center;

button {
  margin-top: 10px;
  padding: 10px 20px;


  • We have selected the button element and h1 element using the document.querySelector() method and stored them in btnGet and output variables respectively.
  • We have attached a click event listener to the button element.
  • We have a global variable myString which holds a string as its value.
  • In the event handler function, we are calling the substring() method and passing 1 as a parameter which is the index of the second letter “r”. As a result, we will get a new string except for the first character "G". The new string will be stored in the result variable.
  • Again, we are calling the substring() method and passing 2 parameters, the index of the last character and 0 which is the index of the first character. To get the index of the last character, we just need to subtract 1 from the string length. Finally, we will get a new string except for the last character "o". The final string will be stored again in the result variable.
  • We are displaying the result in the h1 element using the innerText property.
let btnGet = document.querySelector("button");
let output = document.querySelector("h1");

let myString = "Great Job";

btnGet.addEventListener("click", () => {  
  let result = myString.substring(1);
   result = result.substring(result.length - 1, 0);
  output.innerText = result;