05. Font Spacing leading, kerning

Now let's take a look into the technicalities of line height and spacing.


Leading is the height of lines of an element. It is specified by the line-height property. This value is measured between the descender (lowest point) and the ascender (highest point). The value is relative to the normal font size, so a value of 2 would be 2 times the normal font size.

Note that the vertical space between lines should be larger than the space between each word; this helps the eye move along the line instead of down them.

It's often good practice to use em units so that the gap between lines is relative to the size of text the user has selected. 1.4 to 1.5em are good starting values.


Kerning is the space between each letter. This is controlled by the letter-spacing property.

Make sure to increase kerning if text is all in uppercase. The gap between the words is controlled with the word-spacing property. Just like leading, it's good practice to use ems for your units.

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