10 essential websites and platforms for free fonts and typefaces
Tired of Helvetica? Bored of Arial? Finding a new font for your next creative project can be an exciting process, but we also know that some of the most eye-catching fonts can often test the limits of your budget. So whether you’re a graphic or UX designer trying to find that perfect typeface, or if you’re just looking to spruce up your CV or website, we’ve compiled 10 websites and resources to help you find the best free fonts.
Please note that some of fonts on these pages are only free for personal use, so make sure you double-check any licenses before you use them for any project, personal or commercial.
Google Fonts is home to some of the most popular fonts today, with their typefaces being used in projects from Wordpress sites to political campaigns. Their most popular font is Roboto, the default font on Android devices for the past decade, and they also host the extremely versatile Open Sans. More hidden gems include Michroma, Enriqueta and Gentium Book Basic.
DaFont is another go-to location for budding designers to find free typefaces, with an easy-to-use interface and categories including “decorative”, “techno” and “Christmas”. Since the mid-2000s, they’ve added over 62,000 fonts, with Lemon Milk and Bebas Neue being some of the most downloaded.
Font Squirrel compiles all the completely free fonts out there on the web. From classic serif fonts like Bodoni*, to the very retro and summery Nautilus Pompilius, we reckon there’ll be a font for everyone. Plus, for anyone who has been left scratching their heads trying to find a mystery font, they also have a font identifier you can use.
If you have an Adobe ID, Adobe Fonts offers a range of over over 1,000 high quality free typefaces to choose from, with the range expanding to over 20,000 if subscribed to a paid Creative Cloud plan. You can also download a wide variety of font packs, including typefaces for band posters and fonts especially for UX and web designers.
Boasting 84,000 free fonts, FontSpace has a wealth of features such as night mode, fonts for Instagram bios and a page simply entitled “stuff”. Some of their featured fonts for this month include the classy Serat, as well as the jazzy Broadway and understated Hendrickson. Those stuck for choice can have a look at the font collections page, with collections curated by both users and FontSpace itself.
FontFabric’s typefaces have been used by the likes of Lipton, Anthony Joshua and Italian broadcasting service RAI. Note that a handful of these fonts are only available to buy – but there are, however, a plethora of free fonts to download as well. Typefaces of note include the fresh and versatile Mont Blanc, the extremely fun Colortube and the Art Deco-inspired Lovelo.
The League of Moveable Type
Branding themselves as “the original, the first, the open-source font foundry”, the League of Moveable Type have been featuring totally free typefaces for over a decade. Launched in 2009 to “raise the design standards of the web”, the likes of Barbie, Instagram and M&S have all trusted their intuition and insight. As well, for only $5 a month, you can become a member of the League and get access to a variety of tutorials, resources and even exclusive freelance gigs.
Open Foundry say that they’re “ready to reimagine how... fonts are found, seen, used, manipulated, hacked and created from scratch.” Fonts in their selection include the very clean Inter Black, the chic Libre Baskerville and Bagnard – which we use for many of our own Creative Lives interviews. Currently on version v1.1.8, they are trying to raise money for version 2.0 with their store, so keep an eye out for some limited edition products!
While some might use Behance as a portfolio site, others have ingeniously used it as a bit of a marketplace – with many a surprisingly high-quality typeface available to download free for personal use. Standout fonts include the Y2K-inspired JX Tabe and the bubbly Lambo.
If you’ve still not been able to find the perfect font yet, FontStruct give you the option to create your own! They even have a quick start guide to help you along the way. There’s also a gallery of other fonts made on the website, that you can download or even clone and modify to fit your needs. Some of them even have a Creative Commons license!
Written by Lyla Johnston