In this article, I’ll focus specifically on magazine covers and how to make them as impactful as possible by using the proper fonts. I'll show you some awesome magazine cover ideas and teach you how to pair magazine fonts.
Searching for the best font is a never-ending story—there are so many options to choose from. There will be a couple of perfect fonts, but it’s ultimately up to you to decide. There are a few things to consider: the personality of the brand/magazine cover, legibility, and the reader’s perception of the cover.
So, how do you select magazine cover fonts? Think of it as developing and assigning a specific personality to a magazine cover. What do you want to communicate? To whom? Once you have that worked out, you can move on to exploring and analysing fonts.
Choosing clear and clean typefaces will get the job done, but this requires some more analysing. If you want to stand out, your magazine cover will need to feature a unique font that’s recognisable. Not only that, but you’ll also need to pair it with another font that will help emphasise certain aspects of the cover.
The reader should get an instant idea of what your magazine is about with just a glance at the cover. A successful cover is important to the overall ‘vibe’ of your brand. Is your cover successfully communicating the personality of your magazine?
Here are a few tips on how you can design an amazing cover design:
- Use different font styles: most fonts include more than one style. You can work with bolder and thinner styles to emphasise certain cover lines or descriptions.
- Use different font sizes: if the font you're using doesn't have many font styles, use font sizes to create hierarchy in your magazine cover.
- Use different colors to emphasise certain cover lines: use darker colors to call for attention, and use lighter colors to describe cover lines.
- As a rule of thumb, pair fonts of different styles; serifs with sans serifs, sans serifs with slab serifs. Never pair two fonts of the same style unless they are very different in anatomy.
- Choose legible fonts for the description of the cover lines. If the cover lines are short, you can get away with using a more extravagant font.
- Think of the personality of the magazine, the readers, and their age. This should help you narrow down the font styles you can use.
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Find Amazing Cover Design Assets on Envato Elements (With Unlimited Use)
With just one Envato Elements or GraphicRiver subscription, you get access to the best magazine fonts, magazine cover templates, and magazine cover mockups. If you're running out of ideas, Envato Elements is the perfect place to find everything you need in one place. There are millions of assets for you to explore!
All the magazine cover templates can be easily customised with just a few clicks. Customise colors, add your own magazine fonts and images, and it's ready to print! If you need to create a final magazine cover mockup to show a client a final cover, the editing is just as easy!
Magazine Font Examples
Below, we have some of the best fonts for magazines from Envato Elements, and suggestions on how to use them and pair them.
Voca is a very unique serif font. If we look closely at the characteristics of the typeface, we can describe its personality as edgy and experimental. This font would be great for a music magazine cover or futuristic fashion. The characters have a high contrast between thick and thin strokes. Pair this font with any of the sans serif fonts suggested in this article, and you’ll have an attractive magazine cover.
While Voca is not quite a Didot style font by traditional definition, it conveys the high-fashion feeling. Think of the Bazaar Magazine font and the high contrast between thick and thin strokes—Voca has a similar anatomy in that sense, while adding a touch of contemporary flair.
Vaulto is a sans serif typeface featuring thick strokes, creating a heavy and hard-to-miss font. Its extended qualities occupy more horizontal space, so if you're looking to create impact with short words, this is a great option. The Paper magazine font has the same qualities as this font, making Vaulto a great dupe. Combine this font with a normal sans serif to enhance legibility for longer cover lines.
3. Roller Alika
Roller Alika is an elegant and modern font that can be used for a niche magazine focusing on weddings or fashion trends. This font is very distinguishable, so it fits perfectly for a magazine logo to use as a masthead. You can pair this beautiful sans serif with a legible serif or sans serif font for the description of cover lines.
Awaken is a soft serif typeface featuring beautiful ligatures and alternates. These two features make the typeface suitable for display and copy. The New York Magazine font cover features a font with swirly terminals, similar to Awaken's characteristics. Pair this font with a script or a sans serif font to support cover lines.
This geometric sans serif features extended characters. It's another perfect substitute for a Paper Magazine font cover style. If you're trying to appeal to a younger audience interested in fashion, this font is modern and a breath of fresh air. Widy is appropriate for display, masthead, and short, punchy cover lines. Pair it with a regular-width sans serif to keep the cover extra legible.
Modern Deluxe is a thin sans serif typeface featuring smooth curves. The font is quite neutral and can have different uses and personalities. In this case, the supporting font should be a serif to add personality to the duo. Another option is to use the same font but slightly smaller to describe cover lines. A perfect example of this is the Essence Magazine font, using the same style in different sizes for hierarchy.
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This elegant serif font was specifically developed for editorial use. Perfectly suitable for a masthead, Consent will make your magazine stand out from the crowd. The font possesses similar characteristics to Didot with its thin serifs. If you're looking to emulate a similar personality to the Bazaar Magazine font or the Vogue Magazine font, Consent is appropriate for that. Pair it with a super clean and neutral sans serif font so that they don't clash stylistically.
8. Watch Quinn
Watch Quinn is a classic serif font that's highly legible. Its beautiful soft curves and small edges are traditional. This font can be a support font for a sans serif or can be used on its own as the main font of a magazine cover. Watch Quinn portrays a similar personality to the People Magazine font.
The Times Magazine font is a classic and traditional serif font. Watch Quinn is a great example of a font that portrays similar values while being distinctively different. That's to say, if you're looking for a font that conveys a similar feeling but is contemporary, Watch Quinn is a great choice.
There are many elegant fonts, but Fonde is a unique one at that. Featuring chic and super thin lines, it's ideal for fashion or lifestyle magazine covers. The font features soft, rounded curves and a little tail at the end of some characters. This font is best used on a masthead—the thin lines would make it illegible and not impactful enough for cover lines. Instead, pair it with a serif font that has thicker strokes or a sans serif font from this list.
While the Vogue Magazine font is anatomically different, Fonde is a great option to use for fashion magazines because it carries similar personality traits.
10. Slightly Marker
Marker fonts are great for conveying an easy-going personality. Think of skateboarding magazines, graffiti, or even alternative music. Slightly Marker is a great street-style brush font that contains OpenType features to help make words graphically unique, like handwriting. Slightly Marker is perfect for a Thrasher Magazine font style. Combine this font with a sans serif font to complete the personality. A serif font here would be contradictory to the personality.
11. Black Ravens
Brush-style fonts come in all different shapes and sizes. Black Raven is a single dry brush style with a rough texture. The solid strokes make it look refined and completely legible. It's another perfect dupe for the Thrasher Magazine font. Most hand-drawn style fonts include alternates so you can personalise words. Since handwriting is irregular, it would look unnatural for all the characters to look exactly the same.
Sanz is a neutral and professional font that's suitable for copy and display purposes. When it comes to personality, this font indicates clarity and rationality. Since Sanz includes different weights, it can work in a masthead and for cover lines. It's really not necessary to pair with any other font, but if you choose to, pair it with a simple serif.
Classic and precise, Lorenza is a sans serif inspired by famous logos. The clear and simple lines make it elegant and suitable for a masthead. The Essence Magazine font is similar to Lorenza, and since the font is super minimal, it's the perfect high fashion font. Pair it with Consent, another high fashion style font, for the perfect duo.
14. Martini Thai
Slab serifs aren't really seen on cover designs, but they are unique amongst the serifs and sans serifs. Martini Thai is an awesome substitute for the People Magazine font. This contemporary font has been carefully designed, with extreme attention to detail. The kerning and proportion adjustment in each character allow for great legibility. Martini Thai is best paired with a sans serif for cover lines.
If you're looking to make a high impact with your magazine cover, Constructio Grotesk is here to help. This font has an extremely bold body and features characters that have been specially designed to make them pop. This ultra-modern font is perfect for a futuristic or fashion magazine, depending on what you want to portray. Pair it with a regular-width sans serif to keep your magazine cover futuristic but still legible.
A well-chosen magazine font can truly transform a magazine cover from "ok" to "awesome" in just minutes. The impact magazine fonts create can affect how readers see a brand and a magazine publication.
In this article, I showed you how to pair magazine letter fonts to create successful and impactful magazine cover ideas. I showed you some of the best fonts for magazines to use for mastheads and cover lines. You'll be able to convey the same flair as some of the biggest and most famous magazines by using Time magazine font ideas, New York Magazine font dupes, and fashionable styles like the Vogue magazine font.
If you need inspiration for magazine cover ideas, remember that Envato Elements and GraphicRiver offer millions of assets with just one subscription. You can find anything from magazine cover templates to magazine fonts, all professionally designed and ready to print. Customise the covers with just a few clicks, and you'll be saving loads of time.
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