Writing in Other Languages

Update: Figma now supports Font Fallback! This allows you to view any syllabaries, logograms or symbols, directly in the Editor. Previously, if the font didn't have those glyphs then they would show as blank spaces when viewing or editing text in Figma.

In this article, we'll show you a couple of ways you can make working with Figma in other languages, a little easier.

  1. Understanding Font Fallback
  2. Using Google Noto Fonts
  3. Using Local Fonts
  4. Using Right-To-Left (RTL) Languages

Font Fallback

Font Fallback allows you to use symbols, logograms or other icons, that aren't part of the font you're using, within text objects in your Figma designs.

This is especially handy for designers using languages that rely heavily on logograms like Chinese, Japanese, or Korean languages.

However, you can also use this to simply paste symbols into your text, that don't exist in that font, without being met with a blank space.

Google Noto Fonts

Google has developed a font family, Google Noto, that supports a variety of syllabary and logogram based languages.

If you spend a majority of time designing in/for a language that relies on syllabaries or logograms, then we recommend using the Noto fonts.

Figma includes a selection of the most popular Google Noto fonts, by default. This covers both the Serif and San Serif versions.

You can select a Noto font from the Font Picker, like you would any other font:

  1. Click the down arrow next to the current font:
  2. Select the applicable Noto font from the options:

Note: Some of the Noto fonts are listed in Figma with a shorthand version of the language supported e.g. Nato Sans SC instead of Nato Sans Simplified Chinese. The list below details the full name of the supported Noto fonts:

  • Noto Sans (most Latin and Cyrillic languages including English and Russian)
  • Noto Sans SC (Simplified Chinese)
  • Noto Sans TC (Traditional Chinese)
  • Noto Sans JP (Japanese)
  • Noto Sans KR (Korean)

Other supported Noto fonts, such as Noto Sans Bengali, Javanese, Malay, Telugu, Tai, Thai, Tamil, Gujarati and Kannada - will be displayed in full.

Using Local Fonts

If you are using the Figma Desktop app, or have the Figma Font Helper installed, then you can use any fonts stored locally on your computer.

By default, Figma will support the following international fonts:

macOS

  • Simplified Chinese: Song, ST Heiti, ST Kaiti, Fang Song
  • Traditional Chinese: Apple LiSung, LiHei Pro, LiSong Pro
  • Japanese: Osaka, Hiragino
  • Korean: Hangangche, Seoul, Apple SD Gothic Neo

Windows

  • Simplified Chinese: SimSun, KaiTi, Microsoft YaHei
  • Traditional Chinese: Ming Light, Microsoft JhengHei
  • Japanese: MS Gothic, MS Mincho
  • Chinese: Microsoft JhengHei, Microsoft YaHei, SimHei
  • Korean: Dotum, Gulim, Batang, Gungsuh

Learn more about using local fonts in our Working with Fonts article.

Using Right-To-Left (RTL) languages

At present, Figma does not natively support Right-To-Left (RTL) languages e.g. Arabic, Hebrew etc. However, you are able to paste pre-formatted text (from an RTL language) into a text object in Figma.

We recommend using the following workaround to convert text into RTL format. This involves using Sublime Text, in conjunction with a bidirectional SublimeText plugin.

  1. Download SublimeText, a popular text editor that supports code, markup and regular prose: https://www.sublimetext.com/
  2. Download and install the BIDI plugin: https://github.com/imdark/Sublime-Text-2-BIDI
  3. Enter your text into SublimeText in the language/font you wish to use.
  4. Convert it into the correct glyphs using the plugin.
  5. Copy the converted text from SublimeText.
  6. Paste this into a text box in Figma. The desired glyphs and direction will be retained.