If your typography budget's a bit stretched, the web's full of places where you can download free fonts. However you can often end up having to spend ages trawling through badly-made sites and still come away empty-handed.
That's why we've done all the legwork for you and gone in search of the best free font resources that'll deliver the goods you need without wasting your time. Hit up any of the following sites and you're likely to find just the free font you're after in short order.
Besides the obvious places to download fonts for free (and don't forget to check our regularly updated list of the best free fonts, or why not make things a little edgier with some free tattoo fonts), we've also unearthed some lesser known sources – including individual design portfolios and agency sites. So next time you want to download fonts, head here to discover a world of typographical inspiration.
It doesn't have the biggest collection around, but FontM's selection of free fonts is nicely-organised into all the categories you're likely to need, and as well as fonts from around the web it also has a good few designed in-house. On top of the free fonts it also collects together great-looking premium fonts, with handy links enabling you to quickly buy what you need.
With over 38,000 fonts available in TrueType and OpenType flavours, FontSpace is a useful go-to for free type. The fonts here are neatly sorted into plenty of categories to help you root out what you want – alongside the typical 'serif', 'script' (and so on) categories are fonts designed for a particular occasion – ideal if you're not quite sure what you're looking for.
FontSpace has over 2,500 designers supplying fonts, and they're clearly labelled so you can be sure whether a font is good for commercial use or should be consigned to personal projects only.
DaFont is a massive archive of freely downloadable fonts. Browse by alphabetical listing, style, author or popularity. A lot of it is on the unprofessional side, but you can find some choice stuff here. It's also a good resource if you're looking to download free fonts with a novelty theme, like the Pac-Man Font featured above.
04. Creative Market
An online marketplace for community-generated design assets, Creative Market offers a selection of free goods each week – including one free font. The design changes each week and is only available for a limited time period. Because the fonts on offer here are typically paid-for, you know you're getting a good quality product. This is a brilliant way to build up a library of different font styles, and if you do want to buy something on Creative Market, you can often unlock more free fonts and other goodies with qualifying purchases.
The go-to place for designers to show off their work (don't believe us? Take a look at our list of graphic designers to follow), online portfolio platform Behance is a brilliant place to find free fonts. It's also had a recent redesign and is now even prettier to look at.
There's work of all types on here, so you'll need to add some filters to get to the free fonts, but once you've done that there are some great options to download. Whether you want a slab serif, script, tattoo or handwriting font, you're sure to find something that suits here.
Fontasy is an archive of over 1,100 fonts you can download for free. As well as a truly pun-tastic name, this resource offers a great range of styles and a pleasant browsing experience (the category list includes an example 'A' in each of the styles – a nice touch). Unless instructed otherwise, make sure you contact the designer if you want to use these fonts commercially.
FontStruct is a free font-building tool and community. Users create what the site calls 'FontStructions' using the 'FontStructor' editor (bear with us), and are encouraged to share them once they're finished, for others to download. This means there are a lot of fonts to search through, and more are added every day.
There's a range of high-quality TrueType fonts available here, ready for use on Windows and Mac. The site's easy to navigate and the best fonts are picked for the FontStruct gallery.
08. 1001 Free Fonts
Misnomer alert! 1001 Free Fonts doesn't feature exactly 1001 free fonts; it's actually more in the region of 10,001. All of them are handily organised across 64 categories, along with the option to browse by designer.
09. Abstract fonts
Abstract Fonts has one of the cleaner interfaces in this arena, and it's very easy to navigate. There's a custom font preview option, the terms are outlined clearly, and it's updated regularly, with about 14,000 fonts for you to choose from.
Neogrey is the portfolio of Ivan Filipov. Working as a graphic and web designer, he's created some stunning fonts that he's very generously made available for free download. We particularly love his multi-coloured vector fonts.
Next: More free font resources