Free Fonts You Can Actually Use

Written by: Haley Erb

Primary Source: Writing Rhetoric and American Cultures

free fonts gif

Free fonts are awesome, but it’s so easy to end up with a computer full of fonts you’ve only used once. To avoid this trap, it’s preferable to stick to high quality, versatile font families with full character sets and multiple weights. With this in mind, check out the free fonts below, handpicked with an eye for usability. They are ordered in terms of license – at the top you’ll find fonts you can use even for commercial projects, where the strictly personal use families are at the bottom.

Bebas Neue

A tall, clean sans-serif display face that has been called “The Helvetica of Free Fonts”.

  • free for personal AND commercial
  • multiple weights
  • all caps

Simplifica

Another tall sans-serif with a bit of a sci-fi vibe, great legibility, and a ton of glyphs.

  • free for personal AND commercial
  • upper & lowercase sets with full punctuation

Odin Rounded

A super-round, super-versatile display with a HUGE glyph set and stylistic alternates for a varied look.

  • free for personal AND commercial
  • multiple weights (and italics)
  • upper & lowercase sets with full punctuation
  • stylistic alternates

Born

A classic soft serif inspired by the city of Barcelona and designed for legibility at small sizes.

  • free for personal AND commercial (catch: it’s a “pay with tweet” set up)
  • upper & lowercase sets with full punctuation
  • ligatures

Neris

A display sans-serif designed for print with distinctive inkwells and surprisingly legibility at small sizes.

  • free for personal use AND commercial
  • multiple weights (and a few extra for $10)
  • upper & lowercase sets with punctuation
  • small caps
  • Bulgarian/Serbian alternates

Flagship

A rounded slab-serif with a unique personality and a great number set.

  • free for personal use
  • commercial use license (+ webfont) available for $20
  • 2 weights (regular and bold)
  • upper & lowercase sets with full punctuation
  • old style number set, tabular number set + fractions

Klinic Slab

A warm slab-serif from everyone’s favorite pay-what-you-want foundry; it has enough personality for display and enough legibility for body copy.

  • free for personal use
  • commercial license available for $45
  • multiple weights (and italics)
  • upper & lowercase sets with full punctuation
  • ligatures

Lakesight

An earthy script with thick lines and a unique personality.

  • free for personal use
  • commercial license available for $59
  • upper & lowercase sets with full punctuation
  • no number set

Mission Gothic

Another city-inspired font from the powerhouse foundry Lost Type – built to pair with their beautiful Mission Script. (Sans-serif)

  • free for personal use
  • commercial license available for $150
  • multiple weights (and italics)
  • two styles
  • upper & lowercase sets with full punctuation

Modum

A modern slab serif with over 800 characters that is perfect for large projects with lots of copy.

  • free for personal use
  • see licensing page for commercial use
  • upper & lowercase sets with full punctuation
  • small caps
  • 7 different number sets
  • ligatures
  • stylistic alternates for lowercase a, e, g, and y

Corbert

A precise, geometric sans-serif with great legibility.

  • free for personal use
  • see licensing page for commercial use
  • multiple weights (only regular and regular italic are free)
  • upper & lowercase sets with full punctuation
  • 5 number sets
  • stylistic alternates for lowercase a, e, and g

Hallo Sans

A sans-serif with lots of diagonal momentum and unique numerals.

  • free for personal use
  • must contact designer for commercial license
  • multiple weights
  • upper & lowercase sets with full punctuation

Korneuburg Slab

An extremely distinctive slab serif with surprisingly decent legibility and lots of character inspired by Korneuburg, Austria.

  • free for personal use
  • must contact designer for commercial license
  • multiple weights (and slanted)
  • upper & lowercase sets with full punctuation

Wolf in the City

A script with great display potential and some awesome decorative swashes.

  • free for personal use
  • must contact designer for commercial license
  • two styles (regular has the swashes and tighter tracking, where light is plainer and airier)
  • upper & lowercase sets with punctuation
The following two tabs change content below.
Haley Erb
Haley Erb is a junior in the Professional Writing program. She also studies creative writing and the digital humanities. She is a pro-oxford comma and an excellent marshmallow roaster. Willing to ramble about typography, writing, design, food, science, books, space, or pretty much anything. She can be bribed with sour candy. Follow Haley on Twitter @haleys_comma.