Icon fonts are awesome. Other than the fact that they have to be single color, they are superior to using images as icons in every way. But which do you choose? There are loads of different sets out there. I’m going to attempt to round them all up here and keep this updated (this post has already been updated several times).
Pictos is the icon font that really popularized this whole idea. In additional to the sets, they also offer Pictos Server, a service which allows you to build your own font set from its library of icons and will host/serve it to you. This allows for very small (quick loading) font files and a nice UI for updating your current sets.
Symbolset is unique in that they turn words into icons for you. Write the word “heart”, get a ❤. This works via OpenType, a typography feature of modern browsers.
v1 is free on Font Squirrel. v2 is paid with the complete set at $25 or individual icons as low as $0.50.
|Cost||Pay per icon, or $199|
Pictonic also offers a hosted icon service and offers unique pricing ($0.59 per icon).
StateFace has all 50 U.S states as an icon font. When you need ’em, you need ’em.
Also has a free predecessor.
A drastic improvement to the standard Dingbats.
For the weather!
They have little shadows beneath them (so not exactly “flat”). Very small predecessor.
|Cost||Free – $59|
IcoMoon is a set of open source icons. But more importantly, IcoMoon is a web app for customizing and downloading optimized icon fonts. You choose just the icons you want and download that minimized set. You can easily add font from different sets or add icons from SVG files via simple drag-and-drop.
|Number||47 + few other mini sets|
Can be used with or without Zurb Foundation.
Specifically only social media icons. They claim “billions” which obviously it isn’t.
|Cost||$12 – $49|
In a bunch of different separate fonts based on type (e.g. arrows, icons, circles, etc)
Social stuff only.
Social stuff only.
Free but they accept donations on the main page.
|Number||8 sets, 96 each|
|Cost||$29 per set|
The icons as graphics only are priced differently, but the fonts are broken up into 8 sets. Seems like kind of a pain in the ass to buy just the right sets you need since they are just chopped up to be even numbers. If you love the set, you’re probably better off buying one of the bundle packs.
Snagging it from DaFont then running it through Font Squirrel is your best bet.
Donatations help keep it going.
The following icons don’t come as an @font-face set, but are flat vector icons. You could easily incorporate them into other sets through tools like IcoMoon.
|Cost||$25 – $99|
They have a couple of smaller sets sets, or you can become a member for access to all of them at less than the cost of two sets.
Social icon font.
|Cost||$16 per set|
Comes in two sets, one made from solid shapes and one made from strokes.
|Cost||$9.90 – $59|
Various sets of different sizes and styles at different prices, including some non-flat ones.
|Cost||$5 – $43|
One big set with a couple of little add on packs.
Fundraiser that looks like it’s over but the icons are still for sale. I believe they are only PNG, not vector, and I’m also not sure if you get the 40 “add-on” pack icons automatically or not.
|Cost||$10 – $60|
Also has a non-font set with more icons than come in the font set.
Free if used for personal or community sites.
|Cost||Free – $25|
Set of 200 is free in one size, or set of 400 in two sizes for $25.
|Cost||Free – $49|
Free for personal and community sites, or pay for royalty-free and more formats.
|Cost||Per Icon or Free w/ Attribution|
The Noun Project is probably the largest collection of icons out there. It’s not really a “set” but rather a huge archive of symbols. You can download them one-by-one for free if you agree to attribute the author, or buy the symbol to get it royalty-free. You’ll have to combine them all together to use as a font. You can submit your own.
Similar to The Noun Project, iconmonstr is an archive of icons that you can search through and download one-by-one as needed.
Comes with PSD, SVG, and PNG
|Cost||$69 – $189|
$189 gets you the vector PSD.
|Cost||$10 – $25|
Couple of free preview packs available.
|Cost||$159 – $499|
By Matthew Skiles.
Personal use only.
Similar set as strokes instead of solid shapes.
@font-face version is “coming soon” and will likely be a small set of originals.
Free with attribution.
Omnigraffle stencil for easy icon insertion there, if you use that for wireframes. Looks like a big update to the set coming soon.
By Charlotte Swift. Seem to be removed from web, but live on in some icon font sets.
By Egemen Kapusuz.
Open source and crowdsourced (“we will create 1 icon for every 50$”). Part of the Fontello project.
Based on Windows 8.
|Cost||$26.20 – $262|
Each set (outlines or solid) is $15 or both for $25.
- Make sure you use these with the correct semantic/accessible markup.
- A few reasons why Icon Fonts are Awesome.
- IcoMoon is a fantastic app for customizing, mapping, and creating your own icon font with just the stuff you need.
- Fontello takes a few of the free font icon sets and allows you to pick and choose characters and apply mappings to your own liking. Similar to IcoMoon – simpler but less features.
- Hieroglyph – Generate an icon font from a directory of vector (SVG) files
- Glyphs – the font editor for everyone.