Popular Fonts We Can’t Live Without (Top 25 List!)

popular fonts

Popular Fonts

Ready for the popular fonts we can’t live without?  No custom printing would be complete without great fonts.  I know, I know, we all want the latest, greatest and newest. But did you know that the world’s most popular fonts may not be a part of the new Google Fonts collection? No, while Hi Melody or the Do Hyeon may have a modern-day following, we should never forget our FONT FOUNDERS.  The very history of their design is enough to make us all offer an affectionate salutation and our most profound respect.

Designers change the face of the printed word every day, and they have been doing it ever since Johannes Gutenberg freed type and ushered in the mass communication revolution in 1439. Today, we estimate that there are over 306,000 different typefaces and styles. With all those to choose from, how in the world can you find the world’s most popular fonts. Well, it is a matter of perception, taste and the design you are creating. Even so, we thought we could help by narrowing down your choices a bit with 20 of the world’s most popular fonts. Knowing the creative expressions of designers out there, there will be hundred’s of new ones showing up on the market by tomorrow. But for now, we can say that these are the world’s standard favorites.

 

1.  Helvetica (Max Miedinger 1957)

Max Miedinger created Helvetica in 1957. Moreover, It is one of the world’s most popular fonts, and designers often use Helvetica as a body and header font. This classic font is in many modern designs. But it’s birth began back in the 1950s. We credit its tremendous popularity to its simplicity and stylish looks.

2.  Baskerville (John Baskerville, 1757)

popular fonts

That is one of those classic popular fonts, positioned somewhere between old-style Caslon and modern style Bodoni and Didot typefaces, John Baskerville introduced this typeface in Birmingham in 1757. He began to cut his typefaces to improve his printed works, and it officially came out as a transitional serif typeface with the lower cases featuring almost horizontal serifs and high contrast. He was a designer of his times and admired by people like Benjamin Franklin and Giambattista Bodoni. Since its birth, various type foundries have produced many versions of it, including the fresh and elegant looking ‘New Baskerville.’  That is an excellent font for law office signs.

3.  Times (Stanley Morison, 1957)

Hearing that the much-respected typographer Stanley Morison was unimpressed by the printing quality of newspapers, William Lints-Smith, the manager of a London daily “Times” hired Morison to redesign his paper in 1931. Morison gave the press its new typeface, Times New Roman, replacing its predecessor Times Old Roman. Since then, it is one of the world’s most popular fonts.

4.  Akzidenz Grotesk (Brethold Type Foundry, 1896)

popular fonts

 

Akzidenz Grotesk, a widely known designer, influenced a wide range of other favorite fonts like the popular Helvetica and Frutiger. The Brethold Type Foundry created and released this font in 1896. It became popular again when Gunter Gerhard Lange gave it a facelift in the 1950s.  That is a great, easy to read font for Truck Wraps.

5.  Gotham (Hoefler and Frere- Jones, 2000)

That is an adaptation of the 20th century American Sign maker’s ‘Gothic,’ and today it is popular among cutting-edge designers. We love its clean and modern looks. The Obama campaign took to this font the 2008 election and made it even more popular. Today, Gotham remains one of the world’s favorite font faces.

6.  Bodoni (Giambattista Bodoni, 1790)

popular fonts

Giambattista Bodoni designed this serif typeface in the late 18th century at the palace of Duke Ferdinand of Bourbon-Parma who greatly admired Bodoni’s craft and permitted him to build a private printing office at his palace. The font gained popularity again in the 1920’s when Morris Fuller Benton redesigned it. Later it became famous for being featured in the “Goodfellas” movie posters.

7.  Didot (Firmin Didot, 1784-1811)

Introduced as an alternative to Bodoni in the late 18th century, this typeface is a slimmer version of Bodoni but heavily inspired by John Baskerville’s experimentation with high contrast stroke and condensed armature. Its various revivals have been adding timeless elegance to many modern works. Today, it is one of the world’s most popular fonts.

8.  Futura (Paul Renner, 1927) Is One of The World’s Most Popular Fonts

popular fonts

Paul Renner from Germany made this font back in the 1920’s. Today, Futura is the standard for geometric sans. It was famous for this geometric pattern for over 80 years. Well, known companies like Volkswagen use this font for headlines and titles.  Graphic designers tend to use it when making claims for dimensional signs or large posters.

9.  Gill Sans (Eric Gill, 1928)

That is a sans-serif face designed by Eric Gill. It was released in 1928, by the British arm of the Monotype Corporation. The Gill Sans font is based on Edward Johnston’s 1916 “Underground Alphabet for the London Underground.

Stanley Morison, a Monotype executive, commissioned Gill’s designs into a full metal typeface. As designers, we have used it extensively for decades and have even developed different font weights and variants to choose. It was a “design of classic simplicity and beauty,” used widely for posters and advertisements.

10.  Frutiger (Adrian Frutiger, 1977)

popular fonts

A classic design named for Swiss designer Adrian Frutiger in 1977. It was created especially for the signage of the newly constructed Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris. Like other projects, this is a follow up to Univer, another of his successful typeface fonts. This famous sans-serif face is clear and highly legible at a distance. However, designers also like it for small point sizes in texts. It is known as, “the best general typeface ever,” and “the best choice for legibility.” Thousands of designers agree.

11.  Bembo (Aldus Manutius, Frank Hinman Pierpont, and Francesco Griffo, 1929)

popular fonts

 

A revival of serif typeface initially cut by Francesco Griffo in the late 15th century. Thanks to the redesign of 1928, today designers use it as body text. Stanley Morison revived the typeface in |929 when he took an interest in Italian Renaissance styles.  We recommend using this font for gold foil stickers.

12.  Rockwell (Monotype Foundry, 1934)

A slab serif typeface that came about in 1934, Rockwell, is an essential font in the design world.  Moreover, designers and publishers use it as a display font in many different types of creative projects. That is because its elegance elevates any piece of design. Its geometric slab-serif look comes from another inspirational font, the Litho Antique. Designers and publishers like using Rockwell because of its thick, edgy serifs and bold shapes.

13.  Franklin Gothic (Morris Fuller Benton, 1903)

popular fonts

Developed by American Type Founders head of design, Morris Fuller Benton. Now, in modern times, we often see this font in newspapers and periodicals. Its popularity dimmed for a brief period in the 30’s. But became popular again in the 1980s. Today, designers find it useful for different types of artwork, mainly because it offers more characters than any other of its family.  This bold font is excellent for advertising in high traffic areas like Business Signs.

14.  Sabon Next (Jan Tschichold, 1966)

Oldstyle Font

Jan Tschichold, a German-born typographer designed the old-style typeface in 1966 for use on both Monotype and Linotype machines. Its unique look is based on fonts designed by Claude Garamond. A classic typeface for body text, it features semi-sharp edges and graceful cursive details. It was commissioned by German printers to simplify the printing process and is widely popular today.

15.  Georgia (Matthew Carter, 1993)

Matthew Carter designed Georgia with Tom Rickner in 1993 for the Microsoft Font collection. This serif font is elegant but often used because it is so easy to read and also simple to use. Creatives use this font a lot because it is so easy to understand on computer monitors and even on other low-resolution screens. However, many professionals see similarities between Georgia and the Times New Roman because of its clarity.

16.  Garamond (Claude Garamond, 1530)

popular fonts

Claude Garamond cut his version of the Cicero typeface in the 15th century during the French Renaissance. Additionally, the famous printer and publisher Antoine Augereau commisioned this type in the 16th century and later around 1620. Jean Jannon, a Swiss printer, also used it under the name of Garamond. Today it is a favorite of designers in all forms of media since then.

Robert Slimbach redesigned Adobe Garamond in 1989. And today, we often value and use it so as in web design and body texts. Although there are many types of Garamond fonts, most graphic designers and also publishers prefer the Monotype Garamond.  That is a simple font that you will often see on Church Signs.

17.  News Gothic (Morris Fuller Benton, 1908)

Morris Fuller Benton designed News Gothic in the early 19th century. It is also an American san serif, explicitly created for ATF. Graphic designers and printers often choose this type for its sharp, well-defined edges and its clean, legible lines. Newspapers and magazines often use it for headlines and publishing needs.

18.  Myriad (Robert Slimbach, Carol Twombly, Christopher Slye and Fred Brady, 1992

popular fonts

Today, designers favor the Myriad font. It is a recently designed font created in the later part of the 20th century.  Today, many companies like Apple use it. However, Apple is just one of the companies who continuously use this font to show off its branding. Moreover, this is one of the Adobe original fonts, and the company intended it to be a general-purpose typeface and made it easily adoptable by computer-guided design to different weights and widths. Apple decided to use this as a replacement for the Apple Garamond font in its branding in 2008. You can also easily distinguish this font from other sans-serif fonts for its Y descender and slanting E.

19.  Mrs. Eaves (Zuzana Licko, 1996)

Dissatisfied by the digital revivals of old typefaces in the modern era of “absolute freedom,” Zuzana Licko created Mrs. Eaves in 1996. Like many font redesigns, it is a modern interpretation and also variant of an older font. In this case, John Baskerville’s typeface was the inspiration. However, this newer version is named after Baskerville’s housekeeper. Today, publishers and designers use it as a  display, book titles, and book blurbs font.

20.  Minion (Rober Slimbach, 1990)

popular fonts

Searching for influence while working on Adobe Garamond, Robert Slimbach looked through the prints and printed materials of the Renaissance displayed in European Museums. He used these for inspiration, and it resulted in Minion. The name Minion comes from the traditional naming systems used for type sizes, about 7pts. Minion is an early member and also one of the most popular typefaces of Abobe’s Originals and used extensively for books and prints.  That is a high-end font that is great for any Packaging Labels.

 

No one questions that there is a huge number of fonts to choose from, but in design, it is also about the ability to combine fonts in text or drawings.

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Brandon Stapper
Brandon Stapper is an entrepreneur and investor. He is currently the Chief Executive Officer of Nonstop Signs, an industry leading graphic design, print, and sign business with multiple locations throughout the United States. At 20 years old, with no formal education and only a few hundred dollars, Stapper turned a $400 custom decal machine in a garage into an international printing powerhouse focused on helping businesses improve their marketing and branding with everything from retail signage to packaging, to trade show displays.
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