The Least Appropriate Fonts in Web Design

Fonts are a surprisingly tricky aspect of web design. This seemingly small choice has the power to make or break your website when it comes to giving off an aura of professionalism and quality. Unfortunately, many web designers fall victim to using popular fonts that have overstayed their welcome in the world of design.

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This happens simply because they’re used to seeing them or because they buy into the belief that because others have used them so prolifically they should stick to “what works”. However, this couldn’t be farther from the truth. When designing your website be wary of these popular fonts that are actually some of the least appropriate ones for web design:

Comic Sans

Poor Comic Sans doesn’t stand a chance in the world of fonts and is largely referred to as the worst font of all time. Originally designed for comic books (like its name implies), it has become so hackneyed that the mere mention of it makes many designers shudder. Unless you’re a teacher or a child, Comic Sans should be avoided at all costs. The childish feel does nothing positive for websites.

Bradley Hand

The problem with Bradley Hand is that while it’s made to mimic actual handwriting, it still comes off looking like a font. This immediately retracts from the attempted authenticity of the font, making it one to avoid. You don’t want to make your viewers feel like you’re trying to put one over on them, which is exactly what Bradley Hand is doing.


Papyrus is a strange font that channels a very Egyptian feel that no business can effectively use, despite many widespread efforts. Also, people seem to be overdoing it to the max with this font, which just further solidifies that it should be avoided. Add in that it really isn’t that visually appealing or easily readable and you have a recipe for design disaster.

Brush Script

50 years ago this was the “it” font. But where Brush Script once served its users well, it now has fallen victim to the times and just looks outdated and old. If you have to go with a cursive-style font, pick one that has a bit more of a modern vibe to it.

Lucida Handwriting

When your goal is coming across as professional and high caliber, using handwriting fonts is not the way to go. And yet people still defer to Lucida Handwriting time and time again, despite the ironic fact that the more text typed in it, the more illegible it becomes.

When choosing fonts for web design, don’t get trapped in the idea of using fonts that attempt to mimic handwriting – which is never really successful – or fonts that have become so overwhelmingly overused, that you are likely to see them on every website, menu, or flyer that you come across.

Stick with fonts that are easily readable and not a visual attack on the eyes of your audience.

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9 Comments The Least Appropriate Fonts in Web Design

  1. Pingback: The Least Appropriate Fonts in Web Design

  2. Web Design Certificate Apr 11, 2012 at 01:41

    Ha ha you are so spot on with these. Thanks for the laugh I needed that today. And btw, I hate Comic Sans too!

  3. Steven Apr 11, 2012 at 22:38

    While Comic Sans are blamed to be the one of the worst fonts there are still many people who uses it.

  4. Pingback: The Least Appropriate Fonts in Web Design | Design News

  5. Sebastien James Apr 13, 2012 at 15:08

    Is this really necessary?

  6. bellakristen Apr 26, 2012 at 09:52

    Fonts seems to be less important in writing a text.But when it comes for Graphic design & web design it plays a vital role.When it comes for web desig we have to more carefull in choosing the fonts as it also got a way to improve the site and to attract people to our site.

  7. Lisette May 1, 2012 at 08:41

    Steffie, non-websafe fonts would look good on your machine bacsuee you have those fonts installed on your machine. But if you use non-websafe fonts on your site and a visitor visits your site that doesn’t have those font your design and layout may look very very different than the way you designed it. So I’d stick to websafe fonts for all content text, then if your going to use a non-websafe font use this tip to convert them to images, then you know it will look the same across every browser. But keep in mind that your new text image is not searchable.

  8. Pingback: 3 Fonts You Should Never Use on a Wellness Website – Alternative Health Marketing

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