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  1. Design & Illustration
  2. Typography

How to Turn Off Ligatures in InDesign

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Read Time: 3 mins

In this quick tutorial, you'll learn how to turn off ligatures in InDesign and how to use InDesign's Ligatures panel to explore the ligatures available.

A ligature is the pairing of one or more characters as a single design. InDesign uses this feature for style and legibility purposes as a default. Let's take a look at how to turn off ligatures in InDesign and explore a little more about the Glyphs panel.

What You'll Learn in This Ligatures Quick Tip Tutorial

In this tutorial on ligatures in InDesign, you'll learn:

  • What are ligatures in InDesign?
  • How to turn off and on ligatures in InDesign.
  • How to use the Glyph panel to explore ligatures.

What Are Ligatures in InDesign?

What are ligatures in indesignWhat are ligatures in indesignWhat are ligatures in indesign
Levaus Ligature Typeface

When you're setting text, some characters crash into one another when they sit next to each other. We use ligatures to ensure that these characters sit comfortably. Ligatures are two or more letters joined to form a single glyph. Their main purpose is to save space while designing a beautiful-looking character. InDesign uses ligatures by default if the feature is enabled. Not all fonts have ligatures, so use the Glyphs panel to check for that. 

1. How to Turn Off Ligatures in InDesign

Step 1

Open InDesign and create a new document. 

Create a text box using the Text Tool (T) from the Toolbar.

Be sure to use a font with ligatures. In my case, I'll be using Cesso from Envato Elements. I'll type the popular pairing "fl."

Create a new document and a text box with a popular ligature pairing.Create a new document and a text box with a popular ligature pairing.Create a new document and a text box with a popular ligature pairing.

Step 2

Select the text and go to the Control panel to deactivate the ligature. Click on Ligatures.

Go to the control panel to deactivate the ligature setting.Go to the control panel to deactivate the ligature setting.Go to the control panel to deactivate the ligature setting.

Step 3

Now you have the "fl" pairing without the ligature. It's subjective how you prefer to have letters next to each other. Many of these ligatures have been specifically designed to look pleasing to the eye. 

Now you have the fl pairing as a normal setting.Now you have the fl pairing as a normal setting.Now you have the fl pairing as a normal setting.

2. How to Explore Ligatures in InDesign

Step 1

If you want to check if the font you selected has more ligatures, go to Window > Type > Glyphs.

On the Glyphs panel, select Standard Ligatures under Show. You'll notice that this font has only two standard ligatures.

Open the Glyphs panel to explore other ligaturesOpen the Glyphs panel to explore other ligaturesOpen the Glyphs panel to explore other ligatures

Step 2

Discretionary ligatures are ligatures for decorative purposes. 

On the Glyphs panel, select Discretionary Ligatures under Show. You'll notice there are more options here to choose from.

Explore the discretionary ligature from the Glyphs panel.Explore the discretionary ligature from the Glyphs panel.Explore the discretionary ligature from the Glyphs panel.

That's It!

In this tutorial, you learned what ligatures are in InDesign and how to turn off ligatures in InDesign. These very useful characters' main purpose is to save space by designing a beautiful merge of characters. Do you have a favorite font with ligatures?

If you're looking for ligature fonts, be sure to check out Envato Elements. You have access to high-quality assets and unlimited downloads for a small monthly fee. Be sure to check them out!

If you liked this tutorial on ligatures in InDesign, you might like:

 

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