As a web designer, you really can’t get away with using Arial and Comic Sans MS in just about everything you write and create anymore. In fact if you still use Comic Sans MS… shame on you. It’s time to embrace the wide array of fonts available in the beautiful land we like to call the internet. By implementing a simple change in font, you can bring a whole new personality to your website.
However, many web designers are not prepared to spend $200 purchasing a font set. Luckily there’s an abundance of high quality fonts that are free of charge, readily available for you. Check out websites such as Font Squirrel, Dafont and the free Google Web Fonts to find a free font that is perfect for your content.
It’s awesome that there’s an ocean of web fonts out there for you, but we understand how tedious and time-consuming it could be to swim through some average fonts before you find the true gems. That’s why we’re here to help- here’s the top 10 free fonts for web designers. We’ve put together a variety of fonts that could be used for titles and headings, paragraph text, and not to mention a few versatile fonts you can play around with.
Title fonts should be bold, exciting, unique and most importantly, eye-catching. Don’t be conservative with your title fonts- they are definitive of the personality of your webpage and should tie in with the overall culture of your company.
Looking for a slab serif font for a bold, ambitious title? Bevan gives a modern twist to 20th century wild west typography, bringing a unique personality to your words. Developed by Vernon Adams, Bevan has been digitised, reshaped and optimized for a modern browser.
League Gothic brings an edgy and authoritative personality to any title text. A font originally designed by the American Type Founders Company in 1903, League Gothic has been given a new life (lease) by The League of Moveable Type.
Font Fabric gifts us with Code Light and Code Bold. Code is the perfect font for a sleek and modern feel in web, print and graphic design.
Code Light brings a clean and hipster feel to your text, while Code Bold is impactful and sleek. The bigger this font is, the better, making this font optimal for a large memorable title.
Sharing the same name as a Russian royal residence, Oranienbaum brings a classy and antique personality to your words. Perceived as the modern version of Antiqua, Oranienbaum resembles the typefaces of the early 20th century, featuring pronounced serifs and contrasting geometry.
Designed by Oleg Pospelov as the main type designer and Jovanny Lemonad as the art director, Oranienbaum is perfect for the headline in need of an antique touch.
Josefin Slab, designed by Santiago Orozco, brings 1930 style geometric typefaces back to popularity. Orozco also incorporated a Scandinavian style into this typeface, giving it a favourable typewriter feel. Its comparatively higher caps height to its x-height makes it distinctive, giving a unique feel to any title text.
Paragraph fonts are used where a majority of your words come to life- the body of your webpage. Although title fonts are unique and fun, they’re likely to give your readers a headache if used throughout your body text. Because paragraph text tends to be smaller, keep it safe by choosing a more conservative, for the sake of readability. That being said, you don’t have to stick to Times New Romans or Arial. There are serif and sans serif fonts out there that are optimized for paragraph text, but still brings subtle hints of a distinct personality.
Designed by Anton Koovit, Arvo is a geometric slab-serif typeface family that includes 4 cuts: Roman, Italic, Roman Bold and Bold Italic. Arvo has almost uniform stroke width, but its slight contrast improves on-screen readability and also adds a bit of character to the font.
Designed by Steve Matteson, Open Sans is a humanist sans serif font that is optimal for great legibility at any size. With an upright stress and open forms, Open Sans has mastered a neutral, yet friendly appearance. It may have your readers thinking “it’s a neutral font… but not Arial… this website is so unique, I love it!” (hopefully).
Fonts aren’t defined solely as a title font or a paragraph font. There are many fonts out there that could make either an unique title font or a reader-friendly paragraph font. The main characteristic of versatile fonts is that they can be resized while maintaining legibility and character. Here are a few we came up with:
Amaranth is a friendly, upright italic font designed by Gesine Todt. With a slight contrast and distinctive curves, this font brings a cute and youthful feel to your words. Provided in three different styles, Amaranth is suitable for any text type!
Integrating elements of the Roman, Cyrillic and Greek alphabets, Daniel Johnson created Jura, a font family with a high-tech, modern personality. Although it’s x-weight is comparatively greater than its height, Jura’s four different weights- light, book, medium and demibold- allows you to play around with it to make it perfect for your text.
Although this is our list of top 10 free fonts for web designers, remember that there’s still an ocean of fonts out there for you to explore. Writing great content is one thing, but without the perfect font, your words will be lacking personality. Taking the time to choose a font appropriate for your words will not only make your website full of character, but will also exemplify your careful notice to details. This will all resonate with your visitors and improve their user experience!
What fonts have you used for web design? Which font from this list is your favourite? We want to hear your opinion!