Do Fonts Take Up Memory? [The Facts Explained]

There might come a time when you need to clear up some memory space on your device because it is affecting your system’s overall speed and performance. Rather than sacrifice essential programs, a good place to start would be with unused or unwanted fonts you’ve either downloaded or came with your Windows 10 software. The question is: how much memory do these fonts even take up?

Yes, fonts accessible on your device through various programs will have saved files that take up in-memory storage. How much memory each font takes up varies. Individually, fonts take up a very small amount of memory, but in large quantities, it might take up enough to affect your system performance.

In this article, we will discuss how much memory space fonts can feasibly take up before you start to notice their impact on your device. If you are searching for ways to free up memory space, we will also show you how to delete unnecessary fonts on both Windows 10 and Apple macOS.

How Many Fonts Is Too Many For My Device?

A common question people have regarding fonts is determining when enough is enough. If you have a career in graphic design, marketing, publishing, or similar professions, you might need access to hundreds of fonts, but at what point will they take up so much memory space that they start to negatively impact their device?

There is no overarching figure to answer this question, but most sources seem to agree that you would need to have several hundred to over 1,000 fonts installed and saved on your device before you notice any impact on your device’s performance.

Of course, the answer to this question partially depends on the device you are using. Memory space is specified by Random Access Memory (RAM), and this is what storage your fonts will use up.

Most standard laptops and desktops will have around 8 GB of RAM but it isn’t uncommon for people to upgrade this to 16 GB or even 32 GB of RAM if they think it’s necessary (most people who use opt for 32 GB are graphic designers, digital artists, or use their computers for gaming purposes).

Unsurprisingly, the more RAM you have on your computer, the more fonts you can have saved and installed before they start to have any affect on performance.

How Can Too Many Fonts Affect System Performance?

It’s important to note that while having thousands of fonts saved on your device can reduce its performance, it isn’t in the way you’re probably imagining.

The only place you are going to see poor loading speed and other undesirable side effects form excessive numbers of fonts would be in programs that use and store them, such as Microsoft Office and Adobe Creative Suite.

Here, you might notice that you have a hard time opening the fonts list to select a specific font, loading documents could take longer, or performing basic tasks in these programs is more time-consuming than usual.

While fonts do take up memory space, they aren’t responsible for any reduced performance or lagging found in other programs. So, if your device is struggling to access the internet or keep several tabs open, the issue lies elsewhere.

How to Delete Fonts and Free Up Memory Storage

If you’ve notice you officially have so many fonts saved on your device that it is inhibiting your device’s performance in some way or you simply need that space for something else, your best option would be to delete as many fonts as you comfortably can.

There are two ways you can delete saved fonts to increase your memory space. The first option would be to restore your fonts to their default setting, which will eliminate all non-default fonts simultaneously. The second option would be to individually delete fonts individually.

The process to perform these uninstallation methods would depend on what operating system you use. Below, we have provided guides on how to restore default fonts settings and delete individual fonts for two of the most popular operating systems: Windows 10 and Apple macOS.

Deleting Fonts on Windows 10

If you want to give yourself a clean slate and delete all fonts on your device that are Windows 10 defaults, then you’ll want to follow the steps listed below.

  1. Open the “Start” menu on your device
  2. Enter “fonts” into your search bar
  3. Select the “Fonts Control Panel” when it appears
  4. Click the “Font settings” menu option
  5. Click the “Restore default font settings” button

Alternatively, if there are some fonts you’ve downloaded and want to keep, you’ll need to delete fonts individually rather than uninstalling all non-default fonts. To do this, follow the steps listed below.

  1. Open the “Start” menu on your device
  2. Open the “Settings” menu
  3. Select the “Personalization” menu option
  4. Click the “Fonts” menu option
  5. Select the font you want to delete from Windows 10
  6. Click the “Uninstall” button

Deleting Fonts on Apple macOS

The process of restoring your Apple macOS fonts to their default and removing all non-default fonts is simple; just follow the steps listed below.

  1. Select the “Restore Standard Fonts” button
  2. Click “Proceed”
  3. Click “Ok”

This process will restore your fonts to the standard, factory default state and then move all removed fonts to a new folder titled “/Library/Fonts (Removed).” If you want to delete them permanently, you can delete this folder.

To delete fonts individually, follow the steps listed below.

  1. Open the “Font Book” app (can enter in search bar if you are uncertain where it is by pressing Command+Space)
  2. Select the font you want to remove
  3. Click the “File” menu
  4. Press the “Remove” option

Once you’ve done this, your font will be removed to the trash.

Final Thoughts

Although fonts take up memory space on your device, you don’t necessarily have to limit the number of fonts you have. In reality, it would take thousands of fonts before you notice any reduced system performance. If this does happen, simply uninstalling some fonts should resolve the issue. You can also hide or disable fonts if they start to clutter your folders and make it difficult to use your fonts list.