Picking out the right font for your design project is like selecting an item of clothing. Just like a great-fitting pair of jeans, the perfect typeface can take your design from ordinary to extraordinary. Our computers come loaded with a cursory selection of fonts, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the different typefaces that are available. From beautiful scripts to boxy serifs, there are hundreds of thousands of potential fonts available for your projects.
Refreshing your collection of fonts can be a timely—and costly—endeavor. The licenses for some of the top fonts can be thousands of dollars, but you don’t need to break the bank to make great work. Just peruse some of the best free fonts websites and you'll be on your way to stylish typography.
There are a lot of options when it comes to free fonts. To give you a place to start, we’ve found eight websites that offer a variety of typefaces you can use for print or web design. They have a plethora of styles to choose from—Font Space, for instance, has nearly 33,000 fonts—so it’s best to figure out what you need before you begin. (Do you want a serif? San serif? Handwriting?) That way, you won’t get overwhelmed with the massive amount of choices at your disposal.
Looking for the best free fonts? Take a look at these eight websites.
Every week, Font Bundles has a selection of free fonts to download, in addition to their wide selection of paid fonts. They don’t have the volume of freeware that other sites might have, but their tightly curated bunch offers a wide array of styles.
Despite the silly-sounding name, Font Squirrel means serious business with it comes to bringing you free fonts. They have a lot to choose from, but don’t let that overwhelm you—with classifications and tags, you can easily find a font you’ll want to use. They also have a handy tool called the Font Identifier. Just upload an image with type and the Font Identifier will analyze and tell you what fonts match.
1001 Fonts has way more than 1,001 fonts—try 9,061 (and counting). Using tags like “grunge” and “futuristic” and “messy,” you don’t need to have a deep knowledge of typography to pick something that you like.
If you thought 1001 Fonts has a lot of fonts, Font Space has nearly four times as much! With nearly 33,000, they know the importance of picking the right one. “From Coca-Cola's signature world-recognized font to a font as simple as the one used in the Got Milk? Campaign,” they write, “fonts have dominated marketing since their first use.” To sum it up, “Getting creative and using a noticeable font may mean the difference between being remembered and being forgotten.”
Did you know Google has a library of fonts? For years, they’ve maintained Google Fonts that currently has 847 font families available for desktop and web use. And in typical Google style, you can sort them via Trending or Popular.
If you aren’t opposed to buying a font license (eventually) and want to try out one typeface in the family, Font Spring can help. They offer well-known families like Franklin Gothic and Museo with the opportunity to try one of their typefaces for free. If you love it, you can buy the license for a discounted rate.
Like Font Bundles, Be Fonts doesn’t have the widest selection, but they have many, many different styles to choose from. If you’re looking for some great script fonts, check them out.
The Lost Type Co-Op is a pay-what-you-want type foundry. While you could elect to pay nothing, a small donation goes a long way to paying the designers for their work. In return, you get a selection of designer fonts, many of which have a retro-inspired aesthetic.