Lachean is a writer and editor based in London. With a background in content marketing, she has spent the last few years working in the world of business publishing, focusing on marketing, communications, and advertising, including writing regularly for the Envato Blog.
In this post, we’ll reveal the top logo design trends we’ve been seeing in 2022 so far.
New approaches to logo design evolve with each passing year. Some logo trends are fleeting, which is unfortunate for those companies that use them. Others, on the other hand, might vanish for a time before reappearing years later. Truly well-designed logos, however, take a trend and make it work in the best possible way for their brand identity.
A designer that harnesses a logo trend and makes it the brand’s own will ensure that their work stands the test of time and become instantly recognizable. And in some cases, it will do the best work a logo can do: evoke feelings like nostalgia, pride, aspiration, or even joy.
This year has already seen many design trends pushing boundaries across the board, from maximalism to abstract gradients, and we're all ready to face the future with a fresh perspective and open eyes. So, whether you're launching a new business or revamping an old brand, keep in mind that your logo is one of your most recognizable assets, and it’s important to get it right.
In this post, we’ll reveal the top logo design trends we’ve been seeing in 2022 so far.
What is Logo Design?
A logo can be any graphic symbol that represents your brand. You might use an abstract design (for example, Nike’s swoosh); a figurative design (think Apple’s apple); your company’s name or an abbreviation of it (see Google); or a mix of any of these approaches.
Whatever logo style you choose, your logo design needs to encapsulate your brand’s ethos at a glance and set the tone for the rest of your branding and marketing. It can be a tricky line to walk: a logo design should convey professionalism but also create interest, and give a feel of what your brand is all about.
As a golden rule, your logo should also work in all situations and across touchpoints and devices - for example, from a social media icon all the way up to large display advertising. It’s important to be mindful with color choices, to choose clear typography and make sure your resolution will scale and adjust.
If you’re struggling to distill your brand identity into a single idea, a step-by-step guide like this one from Hubspot, as well as professionally-made logo templates, can help get you on the right path.
Which logo design styles are trending?
While there will also be some logo design approaches that are tried, tested, and here to stay, there’s still plenty of room for creativity. From adding showstoppers like glitch effects and animation to throwing it back to an old-school look, here are 10 logo design styles that have taken center stage this year.
1. Glitch logos
Glitch art is a style that uses deliberate (or sometimes accidental) digital or analog errors to create a ‘glitch’ aesthetic. Glitch art, in general, seems to be on the rise, with digital distortions being a great way to give your brand a distinctive edge that’s both retro and futuristic.
Now that the ‘90s are far enough away to be having a comeback, the glitch effect is having a moment in logo design trends too, especially for young brands. The most obvious example is the TikTok logo, where a glitch effect ties in with the visual and performative feel of the brand. The overlapping colors evoke television static as well as the homemade imperfections of misprinting.
For this reason, the glitch effect is most suited to brands with an entertainment element - think music or events companies, or printed and online media in these industries.
2. Clearer fonts
Decluttering is often good for the soul, and even better for a brand refresh. Simplicity never gets old, and a clear, easy-to-read logo will cut through the noise to stand out from the crowd.
Using a clearer font has the added benefit of scaling and adjusting more easily to suit a range of situations, and you can guarantee it will be more readable across devices with differing screen sizes.
One example of a brand that has opted for a clear font is Google. Over a number of years the tech giant has simplified its text-based logo: first getting rid of the original exclamation mark, then dropping the drop shadow, and finally moving from the signature serif typeface to a bold sans serif called Product Sans. Google now also includes a single letter iteration of the logo as well, ‘G’, and a set of four loading dots that carry through the famous colors.
3. Cartoon-inspired Logos
Cartoons have a playful and nostalgic quality to them, perhaps because we all grew up watching animated TV shows. In logo design, cartoon elements are making a comeback. Many brands are using a character or mascot to represent the company, and it's working quite well. Introducing cartoon qualities not only gives an old logo fresh life but also allows for a lot of variation.
Most likely you’ll want to combine your character with text to provide a little more context to your logo. However, you could mix it up across touchpoints. For example, you might include the text on business cards and let the character stand alone on staff t-shirts.
Not a real surprise that a fitness studio went for a very tough guy character in their cartoon logo. They even illustrated the muscular man holding a big atlas above his head, conveying that every visitor of this fitness has the opportunity to become super strong.
4. All About Nature
It's never been more crucial for company logos to convey an eco-friendly message, as more people seek out organizations with sustainable credentials. Illustrations and colorful pictures that evoke a sense of the great outdoors are common in natural logos.
Source: Envato Elements, Nature logo
Because it’s timeless and universal, nature is the perfect theme for a wide range of brands – from health and beauty to food, clothing, and outdoor gear. Opt for natural colors, hand-drawn elements, as well as floral motifs to create the ultimate natural logo. Take for example this colorful, floral-themed logo for the UK’s Wilderness Festival, where attendees are invited to get back to nature while camping among lakes, forests, and parklands.
If this look appeals to what you’re looking to do with your own brand, you can also take inspiration from artists who have embraced nature in their work. For example, look to the British textile designer William Morris, whose fruit and floral prints are recognizable around the world, or Japanese artist Hokusai’s famous wave - The Great Wave of Kanagawa - made even more famous as an emoji.
5. Simple and Clean
It's critical not to overcomplicate things when it comes to logo design. A simple, uncomplicated brand logo allows customers to read and recognize a company name fast and helps your branding stand out from the crowd.
With simplicity and scale in mind, it's no surprise that looping cursive, all-capitals, and other quirks that could distract from or obscure a business name are gone. Instead, cleaner typefaces that are simple to read across a variety of devices and screen sizes are becoming more popular.
For instance, fast-food chain Sweetgreen simplified its logo by prioritizing clearness and legibility over adding more icons. The move towards a clearer look and feel is also supported by a two-tone color palette that really brings the letters to the foreground.
6. Old Fashioned
Doing a brand makeover or redesign doesn't always have to mean looking forward. Just as digital design often celebrates analog skills, brands have been returning to their roots in recent years with a rebooted version of one of their original logo designs.
Old fashion retro logos are a good choice because people like thinking about the past fondly – particularly when times are hard. That’s why retro artifacts like arcade games and cassette tapes are making an inexplicable comeback in graphic design. You can see retro logos taking various forms, including iconography from the 1980s, while others rely on typography that is inspired by the era.
And while this update manages to add a contemporary twist to old-school packaging, there’s also a definite trend for throwback logos to channel a vintage sensibility. For example, this retro coffe grinder logo pays tribute to historic preparation techniques.
7. Geometric Patterns
Geometric logos are becoming more popular, but the geometric design style itself is nothing new. In fact, it can be seen in art, architecture, technology, and even in everyday objects. Geometric designs are, unsurprisingly, rooted in geometry - and so they use repeated shapes or the relationship between lines to create simple and memorable patterns. This style of design has made an impact in everything from 8th-century Islamic art through to cubism and art deco, and now into logo design.
Some of the benefits are they are really easy to recall since they're straightforward and unique. Squares and rectangles have a sturdy, stable feel about them. A circular or oval logo, on the other hand, might offer a brand an unrestricted, timeless appeal.
When creating a geometric logo, keep in mind that it should be made up of only one shape with a good mix of negative and filled space. Examples are easy to find - look at things such as Adidas, the Olympic Rings, or UK-based bank HSBC.
8. Hand-drawn logos
In the digital world, hand-drawn logo design styles are becoming increasingly prominent despite their DIY nature. Small business owners are usually looking for simple designs that may be tailored to their specific needs. They no longer want logos with a lot of details; instead, they want something personal and elegant that makes their brand stand out.
A hand-drawn logo, like a signature, gives the impression that someone from the company took the time to manually inscribe a product or piece of branding and therefore, helps your brand appear more local and approachable.
In branding in general, a hand-drawn approach can add a personal touch and an artisan feel, so it’s especially well employed for lifestyle, food, or beauty brands. You can take inspiration from anything that informs your brand, but looking to nature or a simple object related to your company’s ethos is a good place to start your creative journey.
When one color isn’t enough, gradients are a great option, since they allow designers to turn simple logos into more complex visual designs. The seamless transitions from one color to another or different shades of the same color make the logo more mesmerizing and memorable.
Combining bright, vivid colors to create stunning palettes has recently been one of the most prominent ways that gradients have been used in logo design. The palettes might portray natural phenomena like a sunset or help generate a futuristic, dreamlike style that speaks of uniqueness and innovation, depending on the objective.
It’s for these reasons that multi-gradient logo designs have proved popular for app-based brands, where customers’ main interaction will be with the app icon. Both Instagram and iTunes use the multi-gradient approach to enhance a relatively simple logo design, as does management software platform Asana, in introducing a simplified visual logo.
10. Animated logos
Animated logos aren't new, but today's designers are making them more complicated, intriguing, and engaging for the firms that employ them. Blending 2D and 3D animation in logos, as well as complicated designs with various moving sections, are some of the ways we're seeing this trend used at the moment.
While animated logos have always been popular, with new technology at their disposal designers are pushing the edge, experimenting with details, and creating more sophisticated and artistic animations. These intricate logo animations are meant to transport the viewer on a journey while also telling a story – and they do a great job.
Music and entertainment brands are perfectly poised to add this kind of dynamism to their logo designs, by harnessing this escapist aspect of telling a story. For example, brands like Shazam and Spotify have used animation to replicate the pulses and beats of sound in their logos.
Creating a logo in 2022
After looking at the most popular logo trends for 2022, you might be wondering whether you should follow trends or stick to what you’ve got. Unfortunately, there isn't a straightforward yes or no answer. You shouldn’t be hesitant to embrace change because the world is continuously changing, and successful brands are simultaneously striving for freshness, timelessness, and originality.
We recommend designers to tread lightly when it comes to logo design trends, and rather encourage them to discover distinctive and unique ways of communicating a visual statement that will not only stand out from the rest but also remain relevant over time.
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