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How to vertical-align with Bootstrap 3

I'm using Twitter Bootstrap 3, and I have problems when I want to align vertically two div, for example — JSFiddle link:

 

<!-- Latest compiled and minified CSS -->
<link rel="stylesheet" href="https://maxcdn.bootstrapcdn.com/bootstrap/3.3.4/css/bootstrap.min.css">

<!-- Optional theme -->
<link rel="stylesheet" href="https://maxcdn.bootstrapcdn.com/bootstrap/3.3.4/css/bootstrap-theme.min.css">

<!-- Latest compiled and minified JavaScript -->
<script src="https://maxcdn.bootstrapcdn.com/bootstrap/3.3.4/js/bootstrap.min.js"></script>
<div class="row">
  <div class="col-xs-5">
    <div style="height:5em;border:1px solid #000">Big</div>
  </div>
  <div class="col-xs-5">
    <div style="height:3em;border:1px solid #F00">Small</div>
  </div>
</div>

The grid system in Bootstrap uses float: left, not display:inline-block, so the property vertical-align doesn't work. I tried using margin-top to fix it, but I think this is not a good solution for the responsive design.

This answer presents a hack, but I would highly recommend you to use flexbox (as stated in @Haschem answer), since it's now supported everywhere.

Demos link: 
Bootstrap 3 
Bootstrap 4 alpha 6 

You still can use a custom class when you need it:

 

.vcenter {
    display: inline-block;
    vertical-align: middle;
    float: none;
}
<div class="row">
    <div class="col-xs-5 col-md-3 col-lg-1 vcenter">
        <div style="height:10em;border:1px solid #000">Big</div>
    </div><!--
    --><div class="col-xs-5 col-md-7 col-lg-9 vcenter">
        <div style="height:3em;border:1px solid #F00">Small</div>
    </div>
</div>
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