16 Best Sites for Free Icons & Royalty-Free Icon Fonts

Hardly any web project can do without good icons. If you are looking for free icons, you cannot avoid the following icon finders and font generators.

Free Icon Fonts

Icons are ubiquitous on the web – it’s teeming with icon collections for every occasion and taste. 

The time designers invest in selecting appropriate icons usually pays off in the form of meaningful, personal websites with a twist. But you don’t always have to scour the depths of the web to find the perfect set of web icons for your next project. We introduce you to the most important icon finders that aggregate tons of icon sets for you, as well as the most popular generators for icon fonts.

Some of the providers presented below present both free and paid icons and icon sets. We point this out in the description of each item – but you should of course check the terms of use for the icons you have chosen before you use them. But first, we want to clarify the very basic question: What is an icon anyway?

What is an icon?

Icons are small symbols or pictograms that bear a recognizable resemblance to an object or action and/or are associated with a specific, context-dependent meaning. In the digital world of the 21st century, icons can be found everywhere: in social networks, on the smartphone home screen or in the menu bar of your favourite app. And even offline life can’t do without the little pictures.

They all have one thing in common: They have a simple design and are as self-explanatory as possible. Viewers can grasp the information, message or function behind the icon with just one glance. For example, a camera icon draws users’ attention to the smartphone’s photo application behind it, the magnifying glass symbol symbolizes the search function of an app or website, and the small disk icon can be used to save the document that has just been written.

However, there are also icons whose meaning is not directly apparent from their representation. An example is the pause button. On its own, the symbol appears to have little to do with the intended action. However, its importance has become established over time – it has been universally learned. Like the language itself, icons and their meaning must also be learned by users in order to actually offer orientation, enable communication and function and prevent any misunderstandings.

Where can I find free icons?

Icons have a significant added value for your own products. If you don’t want to take action as an icon designer yourself, there are numerous places on the web that you can use. In the following, we present 16 providers who provide individual icons either free of charge or, in addition to their paid icon sets and subscription models, also provide a wide range of free icons.

1. Find free web icons with Glyphsearch

Glyphsearch

The icon search engine Glyphsearch lets users search for icons from the popular free collections Font Awesome, Glyphicons, Icomoon, Ionicons, Material Design and Foundation – Github’s Octicons are also part of the game. In total, over 1,000 web icons come together in this way, which you can copy and paste into your own web project with a click.

2. Flaticon – the classic icon finder

Flaticon – the classic icon finder

The service of Flaticon not only offers access to more than eight million icons, stickers and logos – it also enables access to the entire collection of symbols via a separate Photoshop plugin without having to go through the Flaticon website. The service can also be linked to Google’s Office programs Docs, Slides and Spreadsheets via the Google Workspace Extension, also directly via a plug-in.

Users with a premium license have the option of loading icons in editable formats – such as PSD, SVG or EPS – and adapting them to their own needs. Anyone who does not want to pay for the premium license must refer to the author by naming and linking it.

The makers of Flaticon are also behind the Freepik service, which we’ll feature next, and also offer a few other products, like the online design tool Wepik.

3. Freepik crawls the web for free icons and graphics

Freepik crawls the web for free icons and graphics

Freepik is an icon finder in the classic sense: The service automatically searches the web for free graphics, icons, photos, vectors and fonts for web designers and gives them to its users sorted by category. At the same time, some designers also create exclusive files, which can also be found for free on Freepik. Overall, according to Freepik, over a million free graphic resources come together. You should also check the exact terms of use on the website of the original provider.

Freepik also offers a premium model that expands the range of usable graphics resources. In addition, premium users automatically receive access to all content and functions at Flaticon and can do without the attribution required without premium access. The spectrum of available graphics is thus expanded to more than 37 million assets.

4. The Noun Project: Impressive icon library with trade-offs for non-payers

The Noun Project-

The Noun Project is fully committed to visual language and diversity on the web. More than five million icons and a wide range of photos, created by a design community and curated by the platform’s operators, can be found here. Not only is the range of topics covered particularly high but also the quality and creativity of the logos.

The downer: If you want to use the strengths of the Noun Project to the full, you have the choice between several models and payment options. In addition, The Noun Project treats icons and photos separately. In order to get full access to the entire library of the service, two subscriptions must be taken out at the same time.

Why is the page still in our overview? Even as a non-paying member of the community, many icons and photos can be downloaded and used – albeit only in black and, in the case of photos, of lower quality and with the name of the creator. You can find detailed information on pricing here.

5. Iconfinder: A large number of freely available icons

Iconfinder

The Iconfinder service has now accumulated more than six million icons, (3D) illustrations and stickers. Of course, not all of them are free. Nevertheless, the service made it into our collection because the search results can be easily filtered by “Free Icons”, “For commercial use” and “No link back”. In most cases, there is still a considerable number of available icons.

If it should be premium content, Iconfinder offers users a pay-as-you-go option in addition to the conventional subscription models. This is particularly interesting if icons are not needed regularly and a long-term subscription model would therefore not be worthwhile.

6. Icons Made in Germany: Iconmonstr

Iconmonstr

Iconmonstr is a project by the Munster developer Alexander Kahlkopf, To date, more than 4,600 black and white icons have accumulated on the platform, all of which can be used free of charge for private and commercial purposes – even without attribution.

7. Icons-8

Icons-8

The Icons-8 platform has more than a million icons to offer, and new, specially created icons are added every day. The creators of the website explicitly respond to the icon requests of the users and adhere to the design guidelines of Apple, Microsoft and Google. In addition to the icons, the service also offers photos and illustrations for download.

However, if you want to use the content for free, you have to reckon with restrictions. Icons can be downloaded for free only in PNG format. A backlink to Icons-8 is also required. Paid models for more extensive use start at $13 per month or $119 per year – which would make the Noun Project (see point 4) the cheaper alternative again. Similar to the Noun Project, Icons-8 also has separate payment plans for each graphic category – or you can opt for the full-set option.

8. The first icon font generator ever: Icomoon

 Icomoon

Icomoon is a web app that allows users to browse a variety of icon collections and combine any selection of icons into their own icon font. The advantage of such font generators: web designers do not have to download complete icon sets or integrate them into their web project, but can choose exactly the symbols they want to use from different sets.

On its website, Icomoon states that it was the first provider of such a font generator. Icomoon doesn’t just have free icons either – according to the creators, there are over 5,500 free and open-source icons in the library.

9. 5,000+ free icons in Dry Icons archive

free icons in Dry Icons archive

At Dry-Icons, users can access the more than 6,700 free icons and vector graphics that the designers of the Dry-Icons project from Macedonia have created since 2007. The collection includes both minimalist icons as well as glossy and seasonal icon sets, which can be used under a free license with attribution and backlink.

10. Free Vector Art at Vecteezy

Free Vector Art at Vecteezy

The Vecteezy platform for icons and vector graphics has both premium content and free-to-use icons up its sleeve. Users of the standard license must refer to the author of the selected icon. According to the provider, there are millions of free resources at Vecteezy, from vector graphics to clip art, and photo and video content to a large number of icons.

11. Open source depot with usability weaknesses: Iconspedia

Iconspedia

Iconspedia also has plenty of free icons, but the site itself is less recommendable in terms of usability. If you want to start looking here, you have to be prepared for a colourful 90s design and a confusing number of advertising banners – it is also advisable to filter for licenses because there are also icon sets here that are only for private use or at least released for non-commercial purposes.

12. Font generator with SVG import: Fontello

Font generator with SVG import:Fontello

Fontello is an easy-to-use icon font generator. Similar to Icomoon or Fontastic, users can browse through a large selection of freely available icon sets. Also included: Font Awesome, Typicons, Modern Pictograms or Fontello’s own icon sets Fontelico and Brandico.

Most icon sets at Fontello are under the open SIL license and can therefore also be used in commercial projects. The icons that users have chosen to use can be put together in their own package. Fontello also offers the option of uploading your own icons or SVG files.

13. Free icons in Iconarchive

Free icons in Iconarchive

More than half a million free icons can be found at Iconarchive – however, web designers should make sure that the selected icon set is actually released for commercial use. Appropriate search filters are available. With some of the free icons, a backlink must be set if they are used. More than 40 different categories from business to vintage promise a good offer in which you can browse for the right icon.

14. Pictonic: A font generator with free and paid icons

Pictonic

Pictonic is another icon font generator in the style of Fontello or Fontastic. The downer with this service: Only 362 of the 2,752 available font icons are free, all others cost 59 cents each. The size, colour and shading of the icons can be easily adjusted and changed later.

15. Font Awesome: The minimalist icon service

Font Awesome

With their minimalist design, Font Awesome‘s icons have become some of the most used icon graphics on the web. The service offers a total of 19,287 icons, divided into 68 categories such as science fiction, gaming, business or brand icons; around 2,016 of them are available completely free of charge and on an open source basis. In addition, the symbols can be adapted to your own wishes using numerous tools.

If that’s not enough for you, you can upgrade for $79 in the first year and $99 in the second year, giving you access to the provider’s entire icon library and the new Sharp Styles. There is also the option of having completely new, individual icons developed by the Font Awesome designers if required. The basic price for a new icon is 300 dollars.

16. Free and paid icons at Freeicons

Freeicons

Hunters of the free icon also get their (non-)expenses at Freeicons. The service offers a wide range of freely downloadable content; In addition to icons, entire illustrations can also be loaded as SVG or PNG. Mentioning the author is absolutely necessary when using the graphic resources free of charge, but with a basic price of four dollars a month, the Pro membership offers a cost-effective alternative.

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