How to Install and Use New Fonts for Documents in Microsoft Word

Adding new fonts to Microsoft Word can help make your documents stand out and look more professional. Whether you want to use stylish display fonts for headings or find the perfect font to match your organization’s brand, installing custom fonts gives you more design options.

In this guide, you’ll learn:

  • Where to find and download free or paid fonts
  • How to install fonts on Windows and Mac
  • How to use new fonts in your Word documents
  • Tips for handling compatibility issues

I’ll provide detailed steps for recent versions of Microsoft Word. However, the general process is similar in older versions too.

Finding and Downloading Fonts

There are thousands of free fonts available online, along with many premium font families for purchase. Here are some good resources to check first:

  • Google Fonts: Offers over 1000 free, open-source fonts that you can download and use commercially. They work well as display and paragraph text.
  • Adobe Fonts: Provides both free and paid fonts, including quality display fonts and well-known classics like Times New Roman and Arial.
  • Creative Market: Sells premium font families and font bundles from independent designers and foundries.
  • MyFonts: Large collection of paid fonts available from professional font foundries. Frequent sales and deals on font bundles.

When browsing for fonts, pay attention to the license terms. Many free fonts are for personal use only, while paid fonts usually come with a commercial license.

Once you’ve found fonts to try, download the font files to your computer. They’ll typically come as .ttf, .otf, or .ttc files.

Installing Fonts on Windows

Installing fonts on Windows takes just a few clicks:

  1. Right-click the font files > Install for the current Windows user or Install for all users
  2. Confirm font installation in the pop-up dialog boxes
  3. Open Microsoft Word to start using your new fonts

The fonts will now be available to all applications on your Windows PC, including the Microsoft Office suite.

Troubleshooting Font Installation on Windows

If your new fonts don’t show up in Word’s font list, try these troubleshooting tips:

  • Restart Word and your computer after installing new fonts. This refreshes the font cache.
  • Check that the fonts installed properly in the Control Panel > Fonts folder. If not, try installing again.
  • Open File Explorer and manually copy font files into C:\Windows\Fonts

Installing Fonts on Mac

On macOS, you’ll need to install fonts using the Font Book app. Here’s how:

  1. Double-click the font files to open them in Font Book
  2. Click Install Font in the bottom left corner
  3. Confirm the font installation
  4. Open Microsoft Word to access your new fonts

Troubleshooting Font Installation on Mac

If Word can’t find your newly installed fonts on a Mac, try these steps:

  • Restart your Mac after installing new fonts to clear the font cache
  • In Font Book, check that your fonts are enabled and appear under All Fonts or User
  • Drag font files manually into /Library/Fonts folder via Finder

Using New Fonts in Microsoft Word

Once your fonts are successfully installed, putting them to use in Word is easy:

  1. Open a Word document
  2. Select the text you want to format
  3. On the Home tab, open the Fonts menu (or press Ctrl+D)
  4. Scroll down to see your newly added font families and fonts
  5. Select the font you want to use

Your new font will apply instantly to the selected text. Keep in mind that some fonts work better for headings while others are ideal for paragraph text.

Applying Fonts to Entire Documents

Rather than formatting your text manually, you can have Word apply new fonts automatically using document themes:

  1. On the Design tab, click Themes
  2. Scroll through the options to preview different font pairings on your text
  3. Save a custom theme to reuse the font combination later

Themes make it easy to maintain consistent fonts across long Word documents.

Font Compatibility Issues

Microsoft Word only supports TrueType (.ttf), OpenType (.otf), and TrueType Collection (.ttc) fonts. Installing other font file types can cause compatibility issues.

If you share Word documents with custom fonts, the fonts may not display properly on someone else’s computer. To ensure font compatibility:

  • Save documents as PDF files when possible to embed fonts
  • Use common system fonts like Arial, Times New Roman, etc.
  • Convert text to shapes or images to permanently save font formatting


With this guide, you should now feel comfortable finding, downloading, installing new fonts, and applying them in Microsoft Word.

Start exploring fonts and see how you can enhance your documents beyond the standard built-in options. Just be cautious of any licensing restrictions, and save your files appropriately to avoid issues.

Let your documents speak with more visual flair using custom fonts in Word!

About the Author

I’m a technical writer and Word expert with over 5 years of experience creating documentation and training materials for software products. I’m passionate about making complex software easy to use and understand through clear writing, helpful visuals, and simple instructions anyone can follow.

When I’m not writing, you’ll find me outdoors with my camera, capturing dramatic landscapes and wildlife close-ups to fuel my creativity. I love turning those images into font design inspiration later on.

If you have any questions about working with fonts in Word or need help creating visually appealing documents, feel free to reach out!