Kai Dickerson
Community Specialist
Posted February 24, 2021

8 best fonts for resume writing 2021

Discover the 8 best fonts for resume writing in 2021 and learn font tips to get your resume read.
Kai Dickerson
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8 best fonts for resume writing 2021
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It’s time to make your resume look as good as it sounds.

You followed our best tips to write a great resume. Your job application is clear, concise, and well-written.

But what about the way it looks? Did you know a good resume font can be just as important as what your resume says?

The right font can make the difference between a quality professional resume and one that is ignored. The font style you choose has to be professional, easy-to-read, and the right size.

There is a fine line between a resume font that stands out and one that goes too far.

So what is the best font for resume writing in 2021? In this article, you'll learn how to choose the best font for your resume, the difference between a serif font and a sans serif font, and how to pick a good font size.

We'll also show you 8 of the best resume font choices for 2021 and where you can download them.

The first step you should take is giving your resume and cover letter matching fonts.

Should my resume and cover letter have the same font?

The Internship and Career Center at the University of California Davis advises you to "use the same font and formatting in the cover letter as you use in your resume".

Why is using the same font for both documents important? The University of Mary Washington explains that a cover letter is “an extension of your resume”, so they should look and feel the same.

Use the same font choice across all your job application documents. If you want to highlight your header or resume sections like education and work experience, use a bold typeface from the same font family. (If you're using Microsoft Word, it's as simple as hitting CTRL+B.)

Choosing one default font makes resume writing easier. Now, let's learn how to choose a great professional font for your cover letter and resume.

How to choose the best font for your resume

The very first sentence Yale University writes about resume formatting says to be aware of how "font choice... affect(s) readability" .

If your resume is hard to read, it doesn't matter what it says. Don't let all your hard work, past experiences, education, and job skills go to waste because of a bad font.

Use these 3 steps and learn how to choose the best font for resume writing — then keep reading to discover the 8 best fonts for resumes in 2021.

Use a professional, easy-to-read font

It is important to express who you are on a professional resume. Don't use your resume font to showcase how unique you are — let the words in your resume do that.

The Society for Human Resource Managers (SHRM) suggests an easy-to-read font makes it "much more likely that a recruiter will read it and that you will make a good first impression".

SHRM explains that employers spend a lot of time “wading through an endless torrent of resumes”. If the font on your resume is hard to read, they probably won’t bother reading it.

It's a good idea to use a professional font for your resume. Simply put, appearing like a professional is the first step to being treated like one. Avoid cursive fonts or fonts with odd, squiggly forms.

Select the right font size for your resume

Powerful job experts like the UCLA Career Center suggest using a font size of 10 to 12 points on your resume. The worst font is one that is not readable, so the size of your font is just as important as the one you pick.

Small sizes become difficult to read on paper. Don't assume the person reading your resume is doing so online. Print out a copy of your resume and make sure you can read it easily at arm's length without straining your eyes.

If you cannot easily read every word of your resume on a printed page, consider a different font or eliminate excess information to increase your resume font size.

What about font size for resume headers? The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) recommends a font size of 12 to 18 points for your name, and 12 to 14 points for headers.

Your name should be the largest font size on the resume. Headers can be placed in bold.

Avoid using thin and light fonts

If you are using a modern or sans serif font, make sure it is not too thin or light. Thin fonts are often difficult for older readers to see, and fonts that are too light often don't print well on paper.

Using a font with strong-looking letters helps with your resume's readability. You don't have to type your whole resume in bold, but make sure the typeface you choose is thick enough for anyone to read.

The official Resume and Cover Letter Guide of Middlebury College says italic fonts should only be used in 2 situations. Italics can be used for headers and company names. If you use italics for the name of 1 company or for 1 header, make sure you use them for all company names and headers.

The best font for resume writers in 2021 — choose from these 8 resume fonts

Now that you know what to look for and avoid in a good resume font, it's time to offer you some options.

Some of the 8 fonts listed below are built into Microsoft and/or Apple products. If you don't own the one you like, it's available in the Google font store.

Take a look at the 8 best fonts for resume writers in 2021 and decide which one is right for you.

Arial

Sometimes the classic fonts are the best. Arial is the standard font of choice for 2021 resume writers. It is a clean, creative, sans serif font that is familiar and easy-to-read.

Helvetica

Helvetica is the standard-bearer if you want a beautiful, traditional font type. It's a font so famous, an entire feature-length documentary was made about it. If you’re applying to work for a modern tech company — especially one that uses a lot of Apple products — choose Helvetica.

Calibri

Chances are, Calibri is the default font you see when you check your email. The fact that Calibri is familiar to the eye is both a positive and negative. It looks great on a computer screen and it might be the most recognizable sans serif typeface for most readers — but using Calibri may run the risk of looking like many other resumes competing against you.

Times New Roman

If you’re looking for the most recognizable, tried-and-true serif font in the world, Times New Roman is the right font for you. The downside to using Times New Roman is that most consider it the "go-to" serif typeface, so others will certainly be using it. The upside? It's comfortable, familiar, and provides a sense of trust and respectability.

Garamond

If you want a good alternative to Times New Roman, Garamond is an attractive serif font that provides a smooth, refined feel. Garamond is the rare serif typeface with style, and is a good resume font for writers, artists and graphic design professionals.

Book Antiqua

Book Antiqua is a strong choice for a job seeker that needs a highly traditional font. It's distributed with Microsoft software, making Book Antiqua accessible and free to most Windows users. It's a sturdy, professional font for resumes headed to traditional companies and academic jobs.

Century Gothic

Century Gothic is a clean, modern sans serif font. Like other sans serif options, it's a balanced and clean typeface with a modern flair. If your job search includes web design, graphic design or web developer positions, Century Gothic is a unique but easy-to-read font that will stand out from other resumes.

Verdana

Verdana is a Microsoft-created sans serif font that is useful for 10-point resume formats. It sizes down slightly better than Helvetica, so if you are packing a resume page with information it might be a better selection. That being said, Verdana does not have the same professional quality as other fonts, so avoid using it if your resume is going to a large corporation.

Need help writing your resume?

Do you have more questions about writing a great resume? We can help.

Here are more tips for common resume writing challenges like explaining gaps in your resume or how to [write a perfect cover letter.

Now that you have the right font for your professional resume, start a job search and find the perfect new job for you!


Visit the Jobcase Getting Hired Resource Center for more helpful advice.

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Kai Dickerson
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Michelle Catapang

I hope to read more articles like this. It is truly helpful. Thank you!

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