Neon fonts and styles are making a huge comeback in 2018
Neon signs and their unique stylistic features have been around for decades. What we've come to know and love as the neon style was born of the necessity to carefully bend glass tubes into letters in a way that allowed their internal neon gas to be electrified and illuminated. Nowadays, this same retro-inspired style is making for beautiful and authentic digital graphics that can inspire a hipster/80s vibe unlike any other.
In this post we're going to take a look at a lot of different neon styles, discuss some of the differences, teach you how to create basic neon styles yourself, and compare a lot of different examples from the real world. Let's get started:
A good neon typeface is the basis for almost all work in neon-styled design and a lot of work in real-world signage as well. We've looked at a bunch of different fonts and picked a few of our favorites to get you started.
This list wouldn't be complete without a classic neon tubes font (this one designed by our own Tony Thomas). This font is designed with rounded letterforms and a real world tube-style. If you're looking for a realistic sign effect or need your font to have accurate tube styling, this is the way to go. Download the Neon Sign Font here →
Roadhouse neon is a super-clean and modern double-outline font that somehow manages to look awesome in both western and high-tech uses. Double neon seems to be one of the more popular styles in 2018, and this font will absolutely make your designs stand out beautifully. Check it out and download here.
This cursive script version of Neon Tubes is a fantastically retro, beautifully styled sign font that has an enormous amount of personality. Neon Tubes Cursive manages to have both a wonderfully flowing script style and excellent readability: giving both form and function to your work. Take a look and download it here →
Designed by Typodermic Fonts, Mexcellent is a very interesting neon-esque font that is very suitable for display purposes. Check it out and download more here: http://typodermicfonts.com/mex...
Neon Lights is a very interesting font designed by Allen R. Walden. Free for both personal and commercial use, this font has a beautifully subtle 3D effect built in in the shape of smaller strokes inside each glyph. Check it out and download for yourself here: http://www.fontspace.com/allen-r-wald...
If you've already got your vectors, shapes, or outlines and you're just looking to add an effect to something the following effects and tutorials are going to be a huge help. With different styles, techniques, and authors, one of these is bound to have something useful in your quest for the perfect fit.
This ready-to-use download contains 24 different layer styles for Photoshop that will make neon sign styling as simple as could be. Once installed, you just need to select the layer you want to apply the effect and click on the desired neon style. With tons of colors and styles you'll be sure to find something for any project. You can find more preview images and download these styles here: Photoshop Neon Layer Styles →
This vector pack contains 24 unique vector elements inspired by real-world signage. These items fit perfectly with neon-style fonts and look awesome when added to sign mockups. From arrows to flamingos, these items are a great way to compliment your glowing designs. Get all 24 elements here →
This neon effect was created by our very own Mason Hipp and uses the Neon Tubes font from above. Nothing but layered CSS text-shadows, the effect is extremely flexible and easy to implement. Check out the details and CSS on codepen
This cursive neon PSD template includes beautifully real 3D rendered neon letters included as individual templates in a PSD file. Simply download the file, re-arrange the letters into words as necessary, and enjoy all of the benefits of gorgeous cursive neon lettering. This is not a font or vector file, but with all 26 letters, numbers, and some punctuation. Take a look at more images and download here →.
An awesome youtube tutorial for creating realistic neon lighting effects. Check it out and try it for yourself:
For those of you who would prefer to read a tutorial rather than watch a video, this effect is easy to follow and has a wonderful result. Read the full tutorial on Abduzeedo here.
For those of you who would rather purchase a neon effect than follow through the tutorials above, we have this incredibly realistic neon effect available on Medialoot for purchase at $10. The effect was designed by Tony Thomas and is a great pairing with the Neon Tubes font above. Check it out here ->
As a little bonus if you've made it this far, we're including a link to a free PSD file with a neon text effect. If you're in a hurry and you don't want to pay for a premium effect, try downloading this freebie and take it from there. Get the free download here
And that's it for the beautiful neon effects! If you've got any recommendations or questions feel free to mention in the comments — we'd love to hear from you!