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Best Font for Resume

Why Fonts and Sizes Matter

The font you choose for your resume does more than fill space; it sets the tone for your entire application, impacting first impressions and readability.

A well-selected font ensures your resume is not only professional but also easy to read, which is crucial given the brief time hiring managers spend on initial reviews.

The right font can significantly influence a hiring manager’s engagement with your resume, making it more likely that they will take note of your qualifications and achievements.

Simplify the process of choosing the perfect font and enhancing your resume’s overall design with Hloom’s online resume builder. Our tool offers professional, easy-to-read resume templates that can help your application stand out for the right reasons.

The Best Fonts For Resumes

Selecting the appropriate font for your resume is a key step in ensuring it’s both appealing and readable. Different fonts carry unique connotations and can significantly influence how your application is perceived.

To help you make an informed decision, here’s a breakdown of recommended fonts, complete with their pros and cons, as well as guidance on the optimal font size for readability.

Serif Fonts For Resumes

Serif fonts are characterized by small lines attached to the end of letters or symbols, a detail that can make text easier to read in print.

The top three best serif fonts for resumes are:

Best Font for Resume

Garamond

          • Pros: Elegant and less common, offering a sophisticated touch that makes your resume stand out.
          • Cons: Its classic style might not align with the vibe of modern, innovative companies.

Best Font for Resume

Times New Roman

          • Pros: Universally recognized and easy to read; considered very professional.
          • Cons: Its popularity may lead to your resume looking similar to many others, potentially giving it a less unique appearance.

Best Font for Resume

Cambria

          • Pros: Designed for onscreen readability; maintains clarity at small sizes, ideal for both print and digital submissions.
          • Cons: Like Times New Roman, it’s a default font for many, which could detract from your resume’s uniqueness.
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Sans Serif Fonts For Resumes

Sans serif fonts, known for their clean lines and contemporary feel, offer a modern twist to the traditional resume.

The three best sans serif fonts for resumes are:

calibri

Calibri

          • Pros: The default font for Microsoft Word; it’s familiar to many and optimized for readability on screens.
          • Cons: Its default status means many other applicants may use it, reducing the distinctiveness of your resume.

helvetica

Helvetica

          • Pros: Offers a clean, professional look favored in the design and creative industries.
          • Cons: Not available on all word processing software by default, which might require extra effort to use.

arial

Arial

          • Pros: Highly legible and versatile, making it suitable for various job applications.
          • Cons: Its widespread use across different contexts might make your resume appear less distinctive.

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Best Font Size for Resume

Best Font Size for Resume

Don’t forget that the font size is just as important as the font style. Here’s the general guideline:

          • Main Body Text: Stick to a font size between 10 and 12 points. This range is readable without squinting but doesn’t take up unnecessary space.
          • Headings and Subheadings: Feel free to go a bit larger here, between 12 and 14 points, to create a clear hierarchy of information.
          • Your Name: Make it stand out at the top of your resume with a font size between 14 and 16 points.
            Remember, these are guidelines, not rules set in stone. The best size might vary slightly depending on the font you choose.

Choosing the right font and size for your resume can significantly affect its readability and the impression it leaves on hiring managers. By considering the pros and cons of each font and adhering to the recommended font size, you can craft a resume that stands out for its professionalism and clarity.

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How to Choose a Resume Font

Choosing the right font for your resume is a critical step in ensuring it effectively communicates your professionalism and attention to detail. Here are concise steps to guide you in selecting a font that enhances your resume’s readability and impact:

Consider the Industry

Start by considering the industry you’re applying to.

Traditional fields like law, finance, and academia often favor serif fonts for their classic and formal look. In contrast, creative, tech, and modern business sectors may prefer the clean lines of sans serif fonts for a contemporary feel.

Readability is Key

Your resume needs to be easily readable at a glance.

Opt for fonts that are known for their clarity and ease of reading, such as Times New Roman, Arial, or Calibri. Avoid fonts that are too stylized or intricate, as they can make your resume harder to scan quickly.

Test Different Fonts

Experiment with several fonts on your resume to see which one best complements your layout and content.

Print out your resume in different fonts to check their readability on paper, and view them on different screens to ensure they are clear and easy to read digitally.

Consistency Matters

Once you’ve chosen a font, stick to it throughout your resume.

Using multiple fonts can make your resume look disjointed and unprofessional. Consistency in your font choice helps to create a cohesive and polished document.

Size Appropriately

Ensure the font size is appropriate for readability.

This is typically between 10 to 12 points for the body text. Your name and section headers can be slightly larger to draw attention but keep them proportional to the body text.

Seek Feedback

Sometimes, it’s helpful to get a second opinion.

Share your resume with friends, family, or mentors and ask for their feedback on the font’s readability and professional appearance.

Use Professional Tools

Leverage professional resume building tools like Hloom’s online resume builder.

These platforms offer a variety of templates with preselected fonts that are tailored for professional resumes, simplifying the decision-making process.

By following these steps, you can choose a font for your resume that not only looks professional but also enhances the overall readability and effectiveness of your application, making a positive impression on potential employers!

Understanding Your Industry

The font you select for your resume should reflect the industry you’re aspiring to join. Each sector has its nuances and expectations regarding resume presentation, which can significantly influence a hiring manager’s first impression.

Traditional Industries

For traditional fields like law, finance, and academia, opt for serif fonts such as:

          • Times New Roman
          • Garamond
          • Cambria.

These fonts convey a sense of formality, stability, and respect for tradition, aligning with the conservative nature of these fields.

Modern and Innovative Fields

For industries of innovation and modernity, such as technology, design, and marketing, try sans serif fonts like:

          • Arial
          • Helvetica
          • Calibri

These fonts project a modern, clean aesthetic that suggests innovation and forward-thinking, qualities highly valued in these sectors.

Understanding the expectations of your industry can greatly enhance the effectiveness of your resume. For an easier selection process, consider using Hloom’s resume examples, which are tailored to different industries.

Our templates streamline the design process, ensuring your resume not only meets industry standards but also stands out from the competition.

Customizing Your Resume Font

Once you’ve chosen the perfect font, customizing it for optimal readability and aesthetic appeal is key. Here are some tips to finetune your resume’s typography:

          • Adjust Font Size: The ideal font size for body text is between 10 to 12 points, with your name and section headings slightly larger. This sizing ensures readability while allowing your resume to remain concise.
          • Mind the Spacing: Adequate spacing between lines (line spacing) and between words (word spacing) is crucial. A general rule is to set line spacing at 1.15 to 1.5, which improves readability by preventing text from appearing too cramped.
          • Maintain Consistency: Use the same font throughout your resume to maintain a cohesive look. Applying different fonts can create a disjointed appearance and distract from the content.
          • Emphasize with Bold and Italics: Use bold and italics sparingly to highlight important information like job titles or achievements. Overuse can clutter your resume and dilute the impact of key points.

Common Font Mistakes to Avoid

As you refine your resume, steer clear of these common typography pitfalls:

          • Using Multiple Fonts: Stick to one font throughout your resume. Mixing fonts can make your document look unprofessional and confusing.
          • Choosing Overly Decorative Fonts: Fonts that are too stylized can detract from the professionalism of your resume and make it difficult to read.
          • Opting for Very Small Font Sizes: While you might be tempted to use a small font to fit more information on your resume, this can strain the reader’s eyes. Keep your font size within the 10 to 12 point range for body text.
          • Ignoring Industry Standards: Failing to align your resume’s font with industry expectations can make your application seem out of touch. Research and adhere to the norms within your field.

Key Takeaways

          • The font you choose sets the initial tone for your resume, influencing first impressions and the readability of your content.
          • Serif fonts, such as Times New Roman, Garamond, and Cambria, are ideal for traditional industries due to their formal appearance and readability.
          • Sans serif fonts like Arial, Helvetica, and Calibri offer a modern and clean look, suitable for creative and tech fields.
          • Consistency in font choice throughout your resume is crucial for maintaining a professional and cohesive presentation.
          • Avoid common font mistakes, such as using overly decorative styles or multiple fonts, to ensure your resume remains clear and effective.
Pro Tip:

Aiming for a main body text size between 10 and 12 points ensures readability without overcrowding your resume. Headings and subheadings can be slightly larger (12 to 14 points), and your name should be the most prominent (14 to 16 points).

FAQ

Updated: April 12, 2024

The best font for a resume combines readability with professionalism. Serif fonts like Times New Roman and Garamond are excellent for traditional industries, while sans serif fonts such as Arial and Calibri are better suited for modern fields.

It’s recommended to stick to one font throughout your resume to maintain a cohesive and professional appearance. If you want to differentiate sections, consider using bold, italics, or varying font sizes instead.

While creative roles allow for more stylistic freedom, readability should always be your top priority. If you choose a creative font, ensure it’s legible and professional. Test it by sharing your resume with others for feedback.

The ideal font size for resume body text is between 10 to 12 points. This size ensures your resume is readable while allowing you to include all necessary information. Your name and section headings can be slightly larger to draw attention.

Choose a font that’s known for its onscreen and print readability, such as Calibri or Cambria. Additionally, preview your resume on different devices and print it out to ensure it maintains clarity across various mediums.

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Conor McMahon, CPRW

Conor McMahon, CPRW

Content Writer

Conor is a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW) for Hloom.com. He has over three years of professional writing experience as well as experience in professional development training. As a member of the Professional Association of Resume Writers & Career Coaches (PARWCC) Conor has written on career development topics ranging from resume and cover letter best practices, employer/employee communication, job seeking help, and more. He received his degree in Music Industry at Northeastern University and plays guitar in his free time.

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