Best Fonts for Newsletters

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Mix and Match Font Styles for an Interesting Newsletter

Some sample newsletter templates with fonts
These newsletter templates (top from Adobe InDesign; bottom from Microsoft Publisher) use serif, sans serif, and script fonts. Image @copy; Jacci Howard Bear / Adobe / Microsoft

For the most part, the fonts used in print newsletters should be much like fonts for books. That is, they should stay in the background and not distract the reader from the message. However, because most newsletters have short features and a variety of articles, there is room for variety. The newsletter nameplate, headlines, kickers, page numbers, pull-quotes and other small bits of text can often take decorative, fun or distinctive fonts.

The Best Fonts for Newsletter Articles

Four guidelines will help you pick the right fonts for your printed newsletters. 

  • Choose a serif or sans serif font.
    The text of the articles in the newsletter is not the place for blackletter, script or most decorative fonts. As with books, you won't go horribly wrong with most of the classic serif or classic sans serif choices.
  • Choose an unobtrusive font.
    For most newsletter articles, the best fonts are ones that do not stand up and shout at the reader. It won't have an extreme x-height, unusually long ascenders or descenders, or overly elaborate letterforms with extra flourishes. While a professional designer may see the unique beauty in each typeface, for most readers, the face is just another font and they probably won't know that if it is the ubiquitous Times New Roman or Arial. In most cases, that's a good thing.
  • Choose a font that is clearly legible at 14 points or smaller size.
    Actual font size depends on the specific font but the main copy for most newsletters is set at between 10 and 14 points. Decorative fonts are generally not legible at those sizes. You could go smaller for some other newsletter parts such as photo captions and page numbers.
  • Adjust the leading of the font for the best display.
    The space between lines of type is just as important as the specific typeface and point size. Some typefaces may require more leading than others to accommodate long ascenders or descenders. However, more leading can translate to more pages in the newsletter. Adding 20 percent or about 2 points to the point size of the text is a good starting point for figuring leading. For example, use 14 point leading with 12 point type.  

The Best Fonts for Newsletter Heads and Titles

While legibility is always important, the larger size and shorter length of most headlines and similar bits of text lend themselves to more decorative or distinctive font choices. While you may still use guidelines such as pairing serif body copy with a sans serif headline font, you can use a more distinctive sans serif font than you would use for body copy.

Specific Newsletter Font Selections

Although a serif font is always a good (and safe) choice, legibility and suitability for your design should be the deciding factors. This list of fonts that work well on newsletters includes standards like Times Roman and new faces as well.

  • Perpetua
  • Akzidenz
  • Avenir
  • Schneidler
  • Geo Sans
  • Helvetica
  • Rockwell
  • Times Roman
  • Adelle
  • Clarendon
  • Frutiger

Best Headline Fonts

Some display fonts are designed specifically for headlines and aren't suitable for text sections of a newsletter. However, a bold headline can attract the eye of the reader, which is its purpose. Check out these display fonts and see if they are right for your newsletters:

  • Zag
  • Virtue
  • Sveningsson
  • Olijo
  • Summit
  • Hallo Sans Black
  • Mundo Sans
  • Caslon
  • Utopia Display