The best fonts for resumes are traditional and easy to read. Commonly used resume fonts include Times New Roman, Arial, Calibri and Tahoma, according to About.com. Resume fonts should be set to 10- or 12-point size to ensure maximum readability. Larger sizes are acceptable for section headers but not for the main body of text.
Formatting features, such as bolding, underlining and italics, should be used sparingly. When used for emphasis, it is important to use them consistently throughout the document, states About.com. When a company offers resume formatting guidelines, they should be followed even when they contradict general advice.
Creative industries, such as graphic design, offer more leeway in resume-font choices. In these fields, typography is a more important element of the resume than in other industries. A resume in a creative field must still be clear and readable but need not restrict itself to the commonly used business fonts unless requested by the company.
Not all resumes are immediately read by humans. Computers scan resumes for the most pertinent information without seeing the formatting, and some companies fax, scan or photograph resumes to send elsewhere or for future use. Using fonts that are not clear and legible can render the faxed and scanned versions more difficult to read, even if the original is legible.