How to Install Fonts on Mac or Windows and Use Them Legally by Kettle Fire Creative install fonts How to Install Fonts on Mac or Windows and Use Them Legally install fonts fi

The internet is chock full of wonderful typefaces that you’re probably dying to use. Learn how to install fonts on Mac, how to install fonts on Windows, and determine if you’re using a font legally.

Can I use this font?

When it comes to the internet, just because you’re able to download something does NOT mean you’re allowed to use it. This goes for photos, templates, and—of course—fonts. There are three main types of font licenses, each with different restrictions.

Free for personal use

Typefaces labeled “free for personal use” can only be used on non-commercial projects, meaning there’s no personal gain from the use of the font and no promotional intention.

Examples of legal use:

  • A parent designing a kid’s birthday party invitations
  • A homeowner printing labels for storage bins
  • Teachers making classroom materials

Where to acquire:

Free for commercial use

A font that’s free for commercial use can be used on promotional materials and items being sold.

Examples of legal use:

  • An Etsy shop owner designing a Facebook ad
  • A band member printing T-shirts to sell
  • A professional graphic designer making anything

Where to acquire:

Purchased license

Licensed fonts are intended for commercial use but still have limits. Licenses aren’t transferrable. If a graphic designer holds the license, he or she can use the fonts in items created for a client but can’t share the font file (.ttf or .otf) with the client directly. Adobe Typekit fonts are licensed with a subscription to Adobe software and only work within that software. In all cases, read the license agreement to be sure it covers your intended use.

Where to acquire:

How to install fonts on Mac

1. Download the font file or folder from the source.

  • If the folder is zipped, unzip it by double clicking on the zipped folder.
  • Open the unzipped folder by double clicking on it.

2. Double click on the individual font file (.ttf or .otf) that you want to install.

How to Install Fonts on Mac or Windows and Use Them Legally by Kettle Fire Creative. Mac font screenshot install fonts How to Install Fonts on Mac or Windows and Use Them Legally Mac select font

3. A small box will pop up showing a preview of the font. Click the “Install Font” button in the bottom right corner.

How to Install Fonts on Mac or Windows and Use Them Legally by Kettle Fire Creative. Mac font screenshot install fonts How to Install Fonts on Mac or Windows and Use Them Legally Mac install button

4. Font Book will automatically open. You don’t need to do anything else. Your Mac is just showing you where the font file was installed. You may not be able to see the newly installed file, but that’s ok.

5. Repeat the process with each font weight, e.g. light, regular, bold, italic.

6. Open the application you want to use. Your font should now be available. If it’s not, try closing and reopening the application.

How to Install Fonts on Mac or Windows and Use Them Legally by Kettle Fire Creative. PowerPoint font screenshot install fonts How to Install Fonts on Mac or Windows and Use Them Legally PowerPoint fonts

How to install fonts on Windows PC

1. Download the font file or folder from the source.

  • If the folder is zipped or compressed, unzip it by right-clicking the folder and selecting “Extract.”
  • Open the unzipped folder by double clicking on it.

2. Double click on the individual font file (.ttf or .otf) that you want to install.

How to Install Fonts on Mac or Windows and Use Them Legally by Kettle Fire Creative. Windows font screenshot install fonts How to Install Fonts on Mac or Windows and Use Them Legally Windows select font

3. A window will open showing a preview of the font. Click the “Install” button in the top left corner.

How to Install Fonts on Mac or Windows and Use Them Legally by Kettle Fire Creative. Windows font screenshot install fonts How to Install Fonts on Mac or Windows and Use Them Legally Windows install button

4. The font is now installed in your PC’s main font folder. Repeat the process with each font weight, e.g. light, regular, bold, italic.

5. Open the application you want to use. Your font should now be available. If it’s not, try closing and reopening the application.

Do you have questions about how to install fonts on Mac or Windows? Leave us a note in the comments.


Note: Kettle Fire Creative does not receive compensation for recommending font retailers.

2 Comments

  • I’m looking around to find a fond which is suited to my website, at the moment I’m using the font installed by the person who built the site. Maybe this is a good font for the site or maybe its not.

    Had you thought of doing an article on ‘how to choose the best font’ ? Covering topics such as the message different fonts convey or whether it is best to choose a font we look the like of.

    Many thanks
    Isabella

    • Megan Schaulis says:

      Isabella, Thank you for your comment. We are planning to post a blog about choosing the best font for your project. Check back soon!

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