Best logo design software of 2022
Published Jun 20, 2022 9: 00 AM
Now that you have your brand image in mind, and you have a concept, you may already have a few loose styles. For example, a bold paprika red with sans-serif font, or a curving serif font for burgundy and saffron. Now it’s time for you to turn your ideas into an identity. The best logo design software will give you the digital tools to create branding that stands out in the marketplace.
Top logo software offers all the tools you need to modify any aspect of a logo. This includes a simple wordmark or a unique hand-illustrated symbol, an abstract symbol, and even a combination of elements. Software will let you adjust the curl of a “Q” or how a capital “Y” intersects with an iconographic stroke horizontally. The best software will allow you to adjust the color palette, apply the logos to different design assets, as well as prepare your files for print, web and other media. Most software for creating logos uses a vector format. This allows you to expand and contract without losing quality. However, some software will allow you add raster art, such as photos or digitally painted illustrations.
There are many elements that go into a good logo design software. Because of this, certain design platforms are more difficult to master than others. While some software may cost hundreds of dollars and take months to master, others will be worth the investment because it will allow you to create unique designs. Others are easy to use and can be used to create logos. Some even use algorithms and artificial Intelligence to assist you. This allows you to create a computer-generated design that can be customized to your business’s aesthetic. No matter your level of skill, there is a great logo design software that can help you create a professional logo.
- Best overall: Adobe Illustrator
- Best for beginners: Canva
- Best for 3D logos: Affinity Designer
- Best for icons: Procreate
- Best free: Squarespace Logo Maker
How we chose the best logo design software
There are many logo design software packages available. The best one for you will depend on your goals, skill level and willingness to learn new tools. I wanted to include programs that reflect a wide range of skill levels in this list. I have included my favorite logo design tools as a designer, illustrator, artist, and a professional in the field. I also tested several software packages I am familiar with by reputation, comparing their different benefits. I ranked my choices using a few criteria:
Ease-of-use is a key quality that anyone should look for when considering a new software program. The most powerful logo design suites are generally the most difficult to learn. However, simpler suites can still provide the right toolsets. This list includes both the most user-friendly and more complex design industry standards.
Scalability is very important in logo designs. A vector format is used by most logo software. Vector art is a file type that can be expanded or contracted in size without losing detail. Raster formats on the other hand create images in maps made of pixels. Images can only be expanded so far before they lose quality or become clearly pixelated. Vector art is better than pixel art when a design must be scaled up or decreased to print on a business card or side of a building. It works a little like a digital stencil. Vector tools are essential for logo design. However, the best logo design software includes raster tools.
Compatibility with other design software can be a major bonus. The Adobe Suite is known for its compatibility with other software within the Adobe family. I explained how different software suites can be used with other software families, wherever they are applicable. I also highlighted the common platforms that each software suite works on (Windows, macOS, iPad, etc.
Detail can make a difference. Some of these software offer simple design tools that are easy for beginners. Some allow you to dive into the details. Even though it takes time to master the tools and techniques required to create a logo, the most powerful software allows you to take complete control of the details.
Things to consider before buying the best logo design software
Before committing to a software program, there are some things you should consider.
Many of the more expensive software packages for logo design offer free trial. These free trials can be a great way to get a feel for the software before you commit to buying.
If you are already considering going back to school to improve your design skills, think about whether it is worth waiting to purchase your logo design software. Students often get substantial discounts on more expensive packages. This can result in significant financial savings, which will offset the cost for your education and your software.
Many of the best logo design software can be used widely. It’s helpful to consult community guides when you are trying to achieve something with the software. Many questions about logo design software can be answered in community forums or via YouTube videos.
There are many great, affordable or free software options for logo design. Although it may seem that you need to spend a lot of money to get professional-level tools, there are many great options available for those who have a limited budget. Don’t feel pressured to spend more than necessary if you are on a budget.
The best logo design software: Reviews & Recommendations
Best overall: Adobe Illustrator
Why it was selected: Adobe Illustrator is the best tool for professional-grade work.
- Vector / Raster: Vector
- System: macOS, PC, Linux, iPad, more
- Price Structure: Monthly subscription
- Industry-leading tools for everything from drawing to 3D fonts
- Streamlined workflow segues with other Adobe apps, including Indesign and Photoshop
- Lots of support and community content
- Steep learning curve
- Expensive subscription
Yeah, the learning curve might make you feel like you’ve gone back to high school, but when you master Adobe Illustrator the results are indisputably professional. Illustrator is a leader in the design process. It offers everything you need to edit, draw, color, and create 2D and 3-dimensional shapes. Use the detailed shape editor tools for creating icons, color them with custom swatches you’ve picked out using Adobe Color, brand that image with the custom type you tweaked in Illustrator, apply a gradient to your type, then carry all those assets with you as you finish the faux-gold digital mockup in Photoshop and take it to print in real gold with InDesign. It will also work on the iPad Pro with your Apple Pencil. It’s a lot of power and it’s all yours with Illustrator and the Adobe Creative Cloud.
Illustrator has a lot of power, but it’s not something most people can afford. It has a steep learning curve, but once you have it, it’s easy to forget. It’s also quite expensive. The price of Adobe Suite seems to keep rising. The multi-software plan is quite expensive now. One month of Adobe Suite is equal to the cost of Affinity Designer (for real). It’s important to make sure that you are ready to learn Adobe Illustrator before you commit to buying. You can also get a free trial of Illustrator on the website. If you are serious about professional-grade logos and the illustration and type to support them then Illustrator (and possibly the entire Adobe Suite) may be a reasonable business expense.
Best for beginners: Canva
Why it made it: Canva’s scaling price model, layers of tools and simple design interface make it both a user-friendly and powerful logo editor.
- Vector / Raster: Raster, vector .svg with pro subscription
- System: Web-based service
- Price Structure: Free and paid plans
- Easy to use for beginners
- Powerful enough for pros
- Easy discrete design tools for lots of different applications
- Requires a paid subscription for many services including vector bounces
- Less agile for certain crossover tasks
Canva has arrived on the internet. This browser-based design tool has everything you need to design a website, menus, logos, and more. Its free basic features make it an excellent place to start, and its pro features are great for designers who want to grow.
The logo designer is ready for beginners. It will prompt you with some basic prompts. Then, you’ll have a variety of layouts that you can customize. From there, you can drag and drop icons and colors into your layouts and edit them. The font book includes a number of familiar favorites from Google Fonts, including the much-loved Alegraya family. Pro subscriptions unlock a wider selection of fonts. Once your icon and fonts have been locked in place (and possibly animated), you can easily bounce out your file as low-resolution images. Canva now supports.svg vector formats, but these are only available to pro subscribers.
Canva can be a great place to start and grow. Canva doesn’t offer as much space for professional designers as the Adobe Suite, however, it is a great place to start and grow. Canva is a great option for anyone just starting out. It has a low price for a pro subscription and a simple web-based format.
Best for 3D logos: Affinity Designer
Why it was selected: Affinity designer is a powerful tool for logo designers that combines industry-leading vector editing tools with raster support, 3D and 3D.
- Vector / Raster: Vector and raster
- System: macOS, Windows, iPad
- Price Structure: One-time fee
- Powerful vector tools for icons and fonts
- Raster elements can be incorporated in the app
- Solid 3D design elements
- One-time price
- Works well with Affinity Photo and Affinity Publisher
- Not as deep or feature-rich as Adobe suite
Released in 2014, the Affinity suite is a relative newcomer to the design software industry that aims squarely at taking on the Adobe monopoly. With lots of great tools and features that Adobe users will intuitively recognize, Affinity Designer isn’t a hard switch for Adobe users that have grown tired of Creative Cloud’s ever-swelling fees and costs. Affinity is similar to Illustrator. It allows you to edit text, create a wordmark for your brand, and create vector-based illustrations to put on your website. The package’s simple combination of vector-raster control is what makes it stand out. You can easily embellish your vector art using raster brushes, digital painting, and other pixel effects.
Affinity Designer is a great tool for logo designers who want to add unique hand-drawn elements or 3D letters to their project’s stylebook. It is compatible with iPad. You can hand draw shapes with your Apple Pencil and then transfer it to your computer to get more detailed details.
Affinity designer is a great value software package for designers. It comes at a moderate price. Although it isn’t the most expensive, its combination of ease-of-use, powerful tools that can compete against Adobe and native raster support makes it a great investment. You can get the entire toolset in Affinity Designer for the price of one month Adobe CC. While it’s certainly not as cheap as a service like Tailor Brands, its vastly more powerful toolset makes it an undeniably great deal.
Best for icons: Procreate
Why it made it: Procreate is a great place to create digital art. However, it doesn’t export vector art for logos, but it’s still a great place to compose for iPad users, even though you’ll need another app for vectorizing your creations.
- Vector / Raster: Raster
- System: iPad
- Price Structure: One-time fee
- Impeccable and intuitive tools for digital painting and drawing
- Decent font support
- Very affordable one-time price (for iPad owners)
- Huge community with lots of user-created content
- No vector editors or .svg export
- Doesn’t play the best with cross-platform workflow for iPad uses with a Windows comp
Procreate isn’t explicitly for logo design and its glaring lack of vector exports might make some balk at its inclusion on this list. Procreate is a powerful sketchbook for iPad users, with its intuitive brush control and exceptional digital drawing tools.
Procreate is made for iPad. With an Apple Pencil, Procreate offers brush control that’s smooth as whipped butter. Procreate’s layer controls are intuitive, and it has simple selection, manipulation, transform and transparency tools. You can easily set up a grid in 3-point perspective and draw a shape within it. Then, tool it, nudge the shape, select your shape, airbrush it, paint into it and export it. Procreate is a great software package for visual artists, whether you are creating vector shapes or just sketching ideas.
While Procreate will not finish your designs in.svg nor give you the exact curve controls that you’d get in a premium editor’s, these issues can be fixed when you add another app to the mix. One of the easiest workflows out there for vectorizing your Procreate designs is the (independently worthy) free Vectornator app. Simply export your Procreate designs as.jpg to Vectornator and use the auto-trace function. Once your design has been converted into a vector, you can use Vectornator’s toolbox to make any adjustments to your vector art. If you’ll be working between PC or Mac and your iPad, then open-source Inkscape’s auto-trace feature offers another similarly simple way to bring your Procreate drawings into the vector space.
Overall, Procreate is a great, intuitive drawing tool for logo designers working on iPad. It even works in vectors. Although it won’t get you to the top as Affinity Designer, Procreate is still a great tool for logo designers. It has a low price and works well with many free vector editors apps. You might even be able to create something special.
Best free: Squarespace Logo Maker
Why it was selected: Squarespace’s logo builder is easy to use and creates beautiful logos with no financial investment.
- Vector / Raster: Raster
- System: Web-based service
- Price Structure: Free
- Free service
- Nice looking results
- Supremely easy to use
- Lacks that unique factor
- Uses icons from Noun Project which has its own legal terms
Websites look best when they have a strong logo. Squarespace is a company that has built a solid reputation by providing all-in-one website designing tools. Squarespace decided to offer the Squarespace Logo Maker free of charge to the public. They believe that aesthetics sell.
The Squarespace Logo Maker makes it easy to create a simple logo right from your web browser. Fill in your brand name and some details. Then, quickly browse through a large library of icons. You can then play with the text of your logo using the built-in tool, whether you choose to use it or not. Although the type tool allows you to cycle through some standard fonts that Squarespace users will be familiar with, the icon library makes use of the Noun Project’s large collection of icons to give you more options.
After signing up, the logo service is completely free. It provides a decently high-definition.png file that can be vectorized using another free service, such as Inkscape, an amazingly powerful vector editor that’s well worth a look. The icons are provided by Noun Project, and there is a small licensing gray area for some uses. Noun Project offers great icons at very affordable rates. If you are looking to make millions from your Squarespace logo, it might be worth paying the few dollars they ask for professional rights. This service is free and easy to use, making it a great choice. However, it lacks the wow factor that will give your brand more credibility.
Q: Which software is best for logo design?
Adobe Illustrator is the industry standard for logo design and is the best overall software for logo design. There are many great options available that are easier to use and more affordable for non-professional designers.
Q: Which free software is best for logo design?
Squarespace Logo Maker is a super easy-to-use free service for logo design. It’s great for creating a simple logo for an online business. It’s also easy enough to use for beginners. Canva also offers an excellent free service, though its more advanced features will cost you.
Q: Is Photoshop good for logo design?
Photoshop is a powerful design platform that can certainly make good logos. Photoshop works in vector art, but raster art. It doesn’t save images in vector format.
Q: Is the Wix logo maker free?
Wix’s services allow you to make a logo for free; however, downloads will cost money. You will pay more for more advanced features.
Q: What software do most graphic designers use?
The Adobe suite is still the industry standard for graphic design. The Adobe suite is still the best tool book for graphic design. Illustrator and Photoshop are taught in schools by most designers.
Q: Is Adobe Illustrator good for logo design?
Illustrator slaps for logo design; its tool set is very good for logo-based graphic design. It is still the industry standard.
Q: Which is better for logo design, Photoshop or Illustrator?
Adobe Illustrator is better for logo design. Illustrator allows you to create vectors that can be scaled easily for many different applications. Photoshop is still a powerful tool, but its raster-based system doesn’t make it as useful for logo designers.
Final thoughts on the best logo design software
The best logo design software includes all the tools you need to create a brand identity people will love and remember. A great logo sets the tone for your business. You can choose a wordmark like the iconic Coca-Cola logo or an icon that aims to imitate something like the Twitter symbol. Logo design software can help you achieve your goals in any way. If you’re after a free service that will make the job easy, take a tour of the Squarespace Logo Maker, you’ll have a simple logo in under 10 minutes. Canva is a web-based service that offers powerful tools and a low subscription price. This will allow you to unlock additional features to enhance your designs. Affinity Designer is worth looking at for anyone who needs professional-level tools at an affordable price. It also offers great vector/raster cross-over space. Finally, Adobe Illustrator is always there for those who want the most serious tools for the job.
I’m a journalist who specializes in investigative reporting and writing. I have written for the New York Times and other publications.