It’s not just logo design that will experience a shift in 2020, it’s branding itself.
Since mobile browsing surpassed desktop in late 2016, the marketing world has been turned on its head, shifting their priorities to making things beautiful (and captivating) on smaller screens.
Now, designers are catching up with the latest logo design trends for a new digital landscape. Tomorrow’s logos will take advantage of technological advancements and a fascination for futurism, but won’t forget the “good ol’ days.”
Top 2020 Logo Design Trends
- Shapeshifting Logos
- Extreme Minimalism
- Integrated Negative Space
- Fine Details
- Friendlier Geometrics
- Historical Logos
- Optical Illusions
- Handwritten Lettering
- Fun & Lively
- New Vintage
- 80s and 90s
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1. Shapeshifting Logos (Generative, Responsive, Contextual, Variable)
This trend affects every brand, no matter the industry, size, or personality. It’s creating multiple variations of your logo so you can better optimize your branding based on where the logo is displayed. This trend combines four sub logo trends that have been simmering for awhile:
- Generative – “Living” logos that constantly changing, often based on an algorithm, or predetermined brand language.
- Responsive Logos — Logos adapt to different device screen sizes (i.e., mobile, desktop, or tablet).
- Contextual Logos — Logos adapt to where they’re used (i.e., a monochrome logo for a business card, a custom logo for a T-shirt, etc.).
- Variable Logos — Certain aspects of the logo change depending on the marketing campaign (i.e., a kid-friendly logo for a children’s campaign, different logos that promote different services).
Even big companies are catching on, but you don’t need to go overboard. Usually, having four different logo variants can cover all your bases.
2. Extreme Minimalism
Minimalism took a firm hold of digital design recently, in part thanks to its practical benefits on reducing loading times and improving visuals on mobile screens. And this has translated to logo & brand identity design.
Brands – most notably in the tech and fashion industries – are removing any extra elements in their logo and focusing on type only, with the vast majority going for a grotesque sans serif.
On occasion, designers are creating artful designs with single stroke lines, or type used in creative ways to convey this minimal look.
3. Integrated Negative Space
Although negative space has been a trick up artist’s sleeves for centuries, it has really gone mainstream in the past few years and the trend is continuing in 2019, where we will see negative space used in clever and inventive ways. This trend not only makes logos more visually interesting, it also enables duality and extra depth for clever designers.
4. Finer Details
While minimalism’s stronghold on digital design remains undefeated, 2019’s logos will gravitate towards more detailed and elaborate designs once again. Usually involving hand-drawn illustrations, we’re seeing lots of baroque-inspired designs that embrace the details rather than stripping them away.
This trend brings back all of the minimalist’s no-nos: line shading, flourishes to fill negative space, concentric circles, parallel lines, and attention to minor details. This sort of detailing is extremely prevalent in the food & beverage industry.
5. Friendlier Geometrics
As mentioned in our Graphic Design Trends 2019 article, abstract geometry and shapes are a prevailing trend across the board. These “mathematical” shapes and imagery (including grids and straight lines) are ideal for recreating that futuristic, sci-fi look that’s popular on screens.
However, the style’s innate drawback is that it can come across as cold or oppressive. Designers are softening its appearance with warm / bright color palettes and the addition of curves to bring balance to logo compositions.
Similar to the Integrated Negative Space trend above, overlaps are another visually dynamic way to add duality and extra layers to your logo. Designers are finding that creating a second or even third element out of a logo’s overlapping space allows for more creative opportunities and mesmerizing blends of color.
7. Historical Logos
Vintage and retro logos were a popular logo trend in 2018… so popular that in 2019, if you want your historical logo to stand out, you have to look back farther than ever before. More logos are drawing influence from the Renaissance or medieval styles, looking at imagery from guild emblems, coats of arms, and other crests predating the Industrial age in hopes of “borrowing” their authenticity.
8. Optical Illusions
One way to create an engaging logo is to make the viewer look twice. Optical illusions are becoming more popular in 2019, blurring the line between 2D and 3D. Designers manipulate perspective and shading for images that defy logic and increase their chances of getting remembered. This trend includes fragmented, bent, warped or visually broken “illusions”.
Badges have been a common logo design style since the beginning, but it wasn’t since the surge of the Hipster aesthetic movement that they got the credit and exposure they deserve, and rightfully so. In this day and age, they are a powerful, versatile and effective way to convey a business’ identity, especially for integrating tag-lines and the year the business was established.
10. Handwritten Lettering
Handwritten lettering has been on the rise for the past year and it shows every sign of becoming even stronger in 2019. As we become more conscious as consumers, we also appreciate the value behind a service, a business, a brand, and ultimately, the Art and the Artist behind it. When you see a handmade logo painted on a business’ window, you know they’re serious about it. And isn’t that powerful?
(Special thanks to talented, Ian Bernard, who crafted the lettering above)
Back in 2012-2013, flat design was the official design standard and today, semi-flat or Flat 2.0 has continued to maintain its presence, which is a natural follow-up to the use of long shadows in 2018. The subtle shadows and details give way for an improved visual hierarchy that subtly enhances logos and identities as a whole.
12. Fun & Lively
A fun & lively design is an antidote for the negativity in the world, and brands are showing that they are not afraid to do things a little differently. This approach, often done with illustrations, is not only meant to be attractive, but also to convey a feeling of positiveness, trust and comfort that bridges the gap between customers and a memorable experience.
13. New Vintage
The New Vintage trend brings back memories, smells and sensations from another time into today’s spirit and pace. While applicable to a wide range of businesses, the food & fashion industries are the ones capitalizing on this fad. It brings a sense of craft and authenticity to the brand.
14. 80s and 90s
In 2018, it was the 80s & Memphis design style, but expect to see more 90’s in 2019! How can we resist the loud colors, sharp shapes, neon skydiver pants and outlandish casual wear?
Expect to see the best of the 90s back in the spotlight in an effort to appeal to millennial audiences and melancholic 80s’ children. And it’s not just copy-pasting what worked before, it’s all about evolving from the raw materials that history provided. What’s trendy about this, is its timely relevancy. See here for 80s/90s fonts.
There you have it, our best Logo Design Trend predictions for 2019. Noticed any other logo design trends ? Which ones are you excited to try out? We’d love to hear from you, so share your thoughts below in the comments section now.