The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (2024)

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Designing an iPhone or iPad app and not sure what font sizes to use? Here’s the quick and dirty summary of font sizes assuming (a) you’re using Apple’s default font, SF Pro (or similar) and (b) you want to match iOS conventions.

iPhone Typography Guidelines

Here’s a quick summary of styles. See below for visual reference and more in-depth guidelines.

Titles (of pages or modals)17ptMedium font weight
iOS 10+ page titles are 34pt before scrolling, 17pt once scrolled
Paragraph text,
Secondary text15ptLighter color as well
Tertiary text,
Segmented buttons
13ptSkip a font size between secondary and tertiary text
Form controls
Text inputs)
17ptHighlight important buttons with medium font weight
Tab bar,Action bar10ptDon't go smaller than this

Let’s break this down element-by-element and look at illustrated examples. We’ll cover not just the actual font sizes, but also how Apple thinks about text styles.


iOS has some big chunky titles, like “Inbox” below – at 34pt, it’s about the biggest text you’ll see on an iPhone.

The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (1)

But once you scroll, titles morph to 17pt, the default size for text-based actions as well.

The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (2)

Note that the title shrinks to the same size as default text – but they use a heavier weight and top-and-center placement to distinguish it as a title. This was a bit of a revelation to beginning-designer-Erik, as I always expected that titles would be bigger than normal text (not simply bolder).

List Views

Lists are the bread and butter of phone apps. You never knew how many things were actually lists until you started displaying them on a tall, thin screen. Let’s look at those next.

The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (3)

In a list view – in this particular example, emails – iOS treats the sender’s name as normal-sized text (17pt), and the subject and preview as secondary, smaller text (15pt). I think this is worth noting, because again, starting out as a designer, my instinct was to do the opposite: make the body the default size and make the sender’s name even bigger. Notice a trend here? iOS doesn’t style font sizes the way you might naively expect.

The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (4)

On the settings page, the options themselves are written out in the default text style, even though the section titles (e.g. “AirDrop”) are smaller (whoa!). But notice that even though the title is smaller, it’s a thicker font weight, meaning you can still recognize it as a title. This balance of emphasizing and deemphasizing styles is crucial.

The notes below the settings (“AirDrop lets you share instantly…”) are written in 13pt font, which is the smallest we’ve seen in any of these UI examples.

Form Controls

Let’s look at a few controls real quick.

The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (5)
The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (6)
The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (7)

This should be starting to feel pretty straightforward now. The only surprise is the segmented button at 15pt size (doesn’t match the other 17pt controls). My hunch is that, since Apple knew some of these buttons would have many options, they just defaulted to a smaller text size for the control, even if there are only two options.

The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (8)

Search uses the default size and weight, though the color is a bit lighter before you start typing in.


The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (9)

This little popup is a super illustrative example of how Apple styles text.

  • The title is the default size. Which you would think would not be enough, but what have we seen before? A thicker font weight to make up for it not being any bigger.
  • The explanatory text is 13pt. I would’ve guessed it would be 15pt, like the email body text, but perhaps they just wanted it to fit on one line?
  • The password input is 13pt, which would be too small for a normal text input, though my hunch is because you’re only going to see a bunch of black circles, it doesn’t need to be the default size.
  • “OK” and “Cancel” are the default size, but since “OK” is hopefully what you will press, Apple draws a little more attention to it by making it a thicker weight.

These font sizes follow a clear pattern, and they illustrate some nice text-styling tricks, but there are some odd inconsistencies for sure.

Action Bar

Finally we’ve got the action bar at the bottom of the screen. This is the smallest text I could find in the whole UI – 10pt. I would stay away from such a small size as much as possible.

The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (10)

iPad Typography Guidelines

As of last update (Aug 2021), iPads generally have lower pixel densities than iPhones (though this has been true for years). Since iPads have fewer pixels per inch, anything that’s sized in “pixels” or “points” will be slightly larger on an iPad. Because we hold iPads slightly farther away from our eyes than iPhones, this balances out nicely–you can keep most of the same font sizes on iPad and iPhone. So start any iPad typography work by reading the iPhone section above.

That being said, the biggest difference is with titles. As you have a larger canvas to work with, an ideal body font size remains ideal – but you have much more space for larger titles.

So while some applications still use the iPhone-style 17pt titles…

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Others are bigger.

The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (12)
The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (13)

So overall, for iPad, you’re going to be following a lot of iPhone styles, but with a little more room to get creative in your headers.

SF Typography Guidelines

The default iOS font is SF, or San Francisco. You can download SF Pro for free. It’s not necessary to use SF when creating an iOS app, but if you want it to have that default iOS look, then SF is your new best friend.

Apple would like you to be a doll and follow a few extra rules when using San Francisco.

First, use SF Pro Display at font sizes 20 or higher. Only use SF Pro Text for body text and smaller.

Font SizeFont Family
19 or smallerSF Pro Text
20 or largerSF Pro Display

Second, San Francisco is designed to have different character spacing at different sizes. So if you want to perfectly mimic the “default iOS” look, have a few options:

  1. Hand-adjust the character spacing depending on your font size according to the table below
  2. Use text styles directly from the Figma iOS library or Apple’s iOS UI Design library (for Sketch, Photoshop, or XD)
  3. Use this handy Figma plugin or Sketch plugin to automatically have SF’s character spacing set correctly, depending on its font size

Or just ignore the fact that Apple tells you to change character spacing down to the hundredth of a pixel. Live free or die, man.

Font StyleFont SizeCharacter Spacing
Bold title34pt0.41
Body text17pt-0.41
Secondary text15pt-0.24
Tertiary text13pt-0.08
Smallest text10pt0.12

San Francisco is the default font for iPhone and iPad. So if you’re using it, best to know about these restrictions. However, you can, of course, design iOS apps in any font you want. Be careful that others might appear bigger or smaller, or less legible, even at the same size.

Continue to Chapter 2: Android/Material Design Font Size Guidelines

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The iOS Font Size Guidelines (Updated for iOS 15) (2024)


Can you change your font on iPhone with iOS 15? ›

You can download fonts from the App Store app , then use them in documents you create on iPhone. After you download an app containing fonts from the App Store, open the app to install the fonts. To manage installed fonts, go to Settings > General, then tap Fonts.

What is the default iOS text size? ›

PaulDoesDev commented 11 days ago
.title3Regular 20.0Regular 15.0
.calloutRegular 16.0Regular 12.0
.headlineSemiBold 17.0Bold 13.0
.subheadlineRegular 15.0Regular 11.0
7 more rows

What is standard iOS font? ›

SF Pro is the system font in iOS and iPadOS. iOS and iPadOS apps can also use NY.

Why has iPhone font changed? ›

The iPhone, however, gives you a single font. If the font changes, it's because the app you have open changed it, not you. But that doesn't mean you can't edit the text at all. Every iPhone lets you change the font size, making it either bigger or smaller.

Can you change the font with the new update on iPhone? ›

With iOS 16, Apple also allows changing the time font on your lock screen. The new default font looks thicker than the one on iOS 15, so if you're not a fan, you can change it easily. In fact, you can choose from a list of eight available fonts at present and change their color as well.

Why can't I change my text size on my iPhone? ›

Use the Larger Text Feature

With this option you can choose how large or small the text should look on your screen. Open Settings on your phone or tablet. Select Accessibility. Then select Display & Text Size.

How do I get my font back to normal size? ›

Change display size & text
  1. On your device, open the Settings app.
  2. Search and select Font size.
  3. To change your preferred font size, move the slider left or right.

How do I reset my default font on my iPhone? ›

just, start in safe mode, then restart? Yes. That will clear all cache data from your user account. It will also reset Font Book, so any custom font sets you've created will be gone, and all fonts in any of the various Fonts folders will be active, regardless of their state beforehand.

What is the official text size? ›

Most courts and lawyers recommend using a 12-point font for legal documents. That's large enough for anyone to be able to read and still small enough that you can fit plenty of information on a single page. Using an overly large font is obnoxious to read and takes up too many pages.

What is the name of iOS font? ›

SF Pro. This neutral, flexible, sans-serif typeface is the system font for iOS, iPad OS, macOS and tvOS. SF Pro features nine weights, variable optical sizes for optimal legibility, four widths, and includes a rounded variant. SF Pro supports over 150 languages across Latin, Greek, and Cyrillic scripts.

What is the standard text size? ›

Body text - Font sizes should be around 16px to 18px for legibility (or 1.6rem to 1.8rem using our sizing rules mentioned above). If you can afford to go a bit larger, then even 21px can be pleasant to read. Headings - The headings should be around 1.96 times larger than your body text to create a sufficient contrast.

Which font is best for iPhone? ›

Best font apps for iPhone in 2022
  • Fonts.
  • Cool Fonts.
  • Fonts Keyboard & Coll Art Font.
  • Fonts for You.
  • Font App- Coll Fonts Keyboard.
  • Fonts++
  • AnyFont.
17 Aug 2022

When did Apple change their font? ›

In 2003, Apple gradually started using a variant of the Adobe Myriad font family in its marketing and packaging. As new revisions of its products were released, the text changed from the serif Apple Garamond to the sans-serif Myriad Apple.

What is Apple changing in text? ›

Apple is adding a new feature to its iMessages: allowing people to edit or undo texts they've sent. The new feature was announced at the company's World Wide Developers Conference on Monday, during which CEO Tim Cook and other Apple executives reveal the newest updates to their products.

What is the Fonts option in iPhone settings? ›

Manage Fonts on iPhone and iPad

You can use your device's built-in font manager under Settings > General > Fonts, where you'll see installed fonts from Font Diner, iFont, and any other font apps you may have downloaded and used. Tap a font and select a typeface to view a sample.

How do you update your font? ›

Change the system font with built-in tools
  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap Display.
  3. Tap Font and screen zoom.
  4. Select your choice of Font Style and you're done.
19 Jul 2021

How do you change the font style? ›

Tap on the "Display" and then the "Font and screen zoom" Scroll down the screen up to "Screen Zoom" and "Font Style." Under the "Screen Zoom" section, you can change the font size that you wish. Under the "Font Style" section, you can choose font style from the available list to set it as the system font.

Why has my text font gone large? ›

To make your font size smaller or larger: Open your device's Settings app. Tap Accessibility, then tap Font size. Use the slider to choose your font size.

Why is my font so big on my Iphone? ›

Go to Settings > Display & Brightness, then select Text Size. Drag the slider to select the font size you want.

How do I fix my font problems? ›

Isolate a damaged TrueType font using the Fonts folder:
  1. Choose Start > Settings > Control Panel.
  2. Double-click the Fonts icon.
  3. Select all of the fonts in the Fonts folder, except the fonts installed by Windows. ...
  4. Move the selected fonts to a temporary folder on the desktop.
  5. Restart Windows.
  6. Try to re-create the problem.
27 Apr 2021

What font size is best for mobile? ›

If you're designing a website or app that can be viewed on mobile devices, there is only strict rule: Use a text input font size of at least 16px.

What is the most readable font size? ›

Choose a font that's at least 16 pixels, or 12 points. If many of your users are older adults, consider using an even larger font size—19 pixels or 14 points. A small font size is more difficult to read, especially for users with limited literacy skills and older adults.

What is the best font size? ›

16px is the ideal font size for your main body text.

It's neither too small nor too big, so it really helps improve your paragraph's readability.

What font is closest to Iphone? ›

San Francisco is a sans-serif typeface family designed by Apple. It was first created for use on the Apple Watch and has since gone on to replace Helvetica Neue as the system font on OS X and iOS. I imagine it will likely replace Myriad as Apple's official advertising typeface in the near future.

What is the normal font? ›

Times New Roman

This is the most common font on earth.

What is the normal text font? ›

sans serif fonts such as 11-point Calibri, 11-point Arial, or 10-point Lucida Sans Unicode. serif fonts such as 12-point Times New Roman, 11-point Georgia, or normal (10-point) Computer Modern (the default font for LaTeX)

What is the minimum readable font size? ›

Anything smaller than 5 pt will be extremely difficult to read, unless it's all capitalized. Even then, 4 pt font is about the smallest you can go. Keep in mind that some typefaces have thinner or lighter font weights, so just because one font is legible in 5 pt doesn't necessarily mean another one will be.

Which text size is best for iPhone? ›

Size. The size of your fonts when designing for iOS should be no less than 11 pts to maintain legibility on the iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch. This is the minimum value of the font size, however, you will find that the ideal value lies in the range of 15–19 pt.

How do I change the font on my iPhone screen? ›

Adjust the display and text size on iPhone
  1. Go to Settings > Accessibility > Display & Text Size.
  2. Adjust any of the following: Bold Text: Display the text in boldface characters. Larger Text: Turn on Larger Accessibility Sizes, then adjust the text size using the Font Size slider.

Can you change default font iPhone? ›

Set a default font and font size for Basic templates

, tap Settings, then tap Font for New Documents. Turn on Set Font and Size. Tap Font, choose a font for the Body paragraph style, then tap Back.

How do you change the text color on IOS 15? ›

Change the color of text

If you don't see text controls, tap Cell or Text. Tap Text Color, then choose one of the following: A color or gradient designed to go with the template: Tap Preset, swipe left or right to see all the choices, then tap a color.

How do you change the font color on IOS 15 home screen? ›

Open the Settings app, then tap Accessibility > Display & Text Size > Color Filters. You'll see three examples of color spaces to help you select an option that fits your needs. Swipe left or right on the examples to find a filter that works best for you.

How do you change the font on iOS 15? ›

How to Change Fonts Style on your iPhone for Videos. 1. Open the Settings app on iPhone, select Accessibility, scroll down to find Subtitles & Captioning, tap Style to change the style to Transparent Background, Large Text, Classic, or Outline Text.

What is the iOS font name? ›

SF Pro. This neutral, flexible, sans-serif typeface is the system font for iOS, iPad OS, macOS and tvOS. SF Pro features nine weights, variable optical sizes for optimal legibility, four widths, and includes a rounded variant.

What font does iPhone settings use? ›

The default iOS font is SF, or San Francisco.

What font is closest to iPhone? ›

San Francisco is a sans-serif typeface family designed by Apple. It was first created for use on the Apple Watch and has since gone on to replace Helvetica Neue as the system font on OS X and iOS. I imagine it will likely replace Myriad as Apple's official advertising typeface in the near future.

Can I change my iPhone text bubble color? ›

Open the Messages app and start a new chat or select an existing conversation. Now, tap the text input field. Just above the keyboard, in the row of apps, select Color Text Bubbles on iMessage. This will bring up different options or customization.

How do I make my iPhone text blue? ›

Open your iPhone settings and go to 'Accessibility'. Now, tap on 'Display & Text Size' from the Accessibility options. In the Display & Text Size settings, turn on the toggle for 'Increase Contrast'. Your iMessage bubbles will become a darker blue.

Can you change the blue text on iPhone? ›

You can change the color of iMessages sent from your iPhone, iPad, or Mac with the third-party app, “Color Text Bubbles.” Follow these instructions to use Color Text Bubbles from your iPhone: Go to the App Store, and enter a search for “color text bubbles.” Tap the result, then tap on “GET” to download and install it.

Can I change my iPhone color? ›

If you are within the 14 day return period for a new phone, you return it for a refund and buy the color you want. if you are outside the 14 day return period, you can't return or exchange the phone for a different color.

Can you change iPhone icon colors? ›

In the Shortcuts app on your iOS or iPadOS device, tap on the shortcut you want to modify. Tap the Icon next to the shortcut name, then do any of the following: Change the shortcut's color: Tap a color swatch.

Can I change font color on iPhone? ›

To change the font color, tap on Customize at the bottom of the screen. Now, tap on the time widget at the top. You'll now see the Font & Color menu on the bottom half of the screen. Here, you'll see a row of color options at the bottom from where you can apply to set as the Lock Screen text on your iPhone.

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