Choosing an icon pack is like marriage: once and for a few years. Therefore, it needs some preparation. We decided to create a run of 3 articles about different sources of icons.
All in all, there are 3 types of sources you can use to find your perfect icon:
Icon Search Engines
As a creator and editor of the DMOZ category, I’ve run into many of them. However, here I’d like to feature two of them.
Iconfinder—Arguably the largest collections in the world which contains over 500,000 icons in various styles.
The Noun Project—similar to IconFinder, but all the icons are monochromatic SVGs. Should you use IconFinder or The Noun Project? We believe that’s the matter of taste.
Advantages of Icon Search Engines
- There is enormous amount of icons from different designers.
- They offer search by tags, which saves a lot of time.
Disadvantages of Icon Search Engines
- Icons lack consistent style and quality.
- They’re the content selling websites only, much like Shutterstock or iStockPhoto. They offer little functionality related to icons. Any conversion, resize, recoloring, generating code, etc.—it’s all on you.
Example of Use
Imagine you’re looking for an icon of a house. You’ll get dozens of the houses of different shapes. Which one is well done? Pixel precise at your selected size?
Now imagine, you need an icon of an envelope: you’ll have dozens more. Now you not only have the difficulty of choosing a good icon; you also have to match the style of the previous icon.
As your interface may contain hundreds of icons, the task becomes impossible, resulting in something like this:
— Icons8 (@icons_8) April 16, 2015
Otherwise, when using a single large icon pack, you have quite few options for each icon, but they have consistent quality and style. For example, check icon of a house and icon of an envelope in Icons8 Web App.
Both cost $9-$29/month per user.