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The best way to load and use Google Fonts in Next.js + Tailwind

thomasledoux1 profile image Thomas Ledoux ・2 min read

I was setting up a new project today with Next.js and tailwindcss, and I had to use Roboto as a font.

Since it's a Google Font, I was looking into the best way to load a font from an external URL (since the fonts are available through a CDN, I don't bother hosting them myself).

The following article explains this very thoroughly: https://csswizardry.com/2020/05/the-fastest-google-fonts.

From this article you can derive the following snippet:

<link rel="preconnect"
      href="https://fonts.gstatic.com"
      crossorigin />

<!-- [2] -->
<link rel="preload"
      as="style"
      href="https://fonts.googleapis.com/css2?family=Roboto:wght@400;700&display=swap" />

<!-- [3] -->
<link rel="stylesheet"
      href="https://fonts.googleapis.com/css2?family=Roboto:wght@400;700&display=swap"
      media="print" onload="this.media='all'" />

<!-- [4] -->
<noscript>
  <link rel="stylesheet"
        href="https://fonts.googleapis.com/css2?family=Roboto:wght@400;700&display=swap" />
</noscript>
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Also note how I only include the weights I'm going to be using (400 & 700) to reduce the size of the font we're loading.

So, how do we implement the above snippet into our Next.js application?
That's quite simple!
In your /pages folder, you should have a _document.js/.tsx file.
In this file, we can easily adapt the <head> section using the next/head module. This will be applied on every page by Next.js.

import Document, {
  DocumentContext,
  Html,
  Head,
  Main,
  NextScript,
} from 'next/document'

class MyDocument extends Document {
  static async getInitialProps(ctx: DocumentContext) {
    const initialProps = await Document.getInitialProps(ctx)

    return initialProps
  }

  render() {
    return (
      <Html>
        <Head>
          <link
            rel="preconnect"
            href="https://fonts.gstatic.com"
            crossOrigin="true"
          />
          <link
            rel="preload"
            as="style"
            href="https://fonts.googleapis.com/css2?family=Roboto:wght@400;700&display=swap"
          />
          <link
            rel="stylesheet"
            href="https://fonts.googleapis.com/css2?family=Roboto:wght@400;700&display=swap"
            media="print"
            onLoad="this.media='all'"
          />
          <noscript>
            <link
              rel="stylesheet"
              href="https://fonts.googleapis.com/css2?family=Roboto:wght@400;700&display=swap"
            />
          </noscript>
        </Head>
        <body>
          <Main />
          <NextScript />
        </body>
      </Html>
    )
  }
}

export default MyDocument
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Now the Next.js part is done. The font is being loaded, yay!
The next and final part is actually using the font in Tailwind, and applying it to all our sans-serif text (since Roboto is a sans-serif font).

This is super easy in Tailwind, this just requires an extension of the default theme:

const defaultTheme = require('tailwindcss/defaultTheme')

module.exports = {
  theme: {
    extend: {
      fontFamily: {
        sans: ['Roboto', ...defaultTheme.fontFamily.sans],
      },
    },
  },
  variants: {
    extend: {},
  },
  plugins: [],
}
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I only needed to add the sans property of the fontFamily object to include the Roboto font, and add the other sans-serif fonts from the default theme as fallbacks.

There you have it! Optimized font loading in your Next.js application with Tailwind :-)
Enjoy.

Discussion (2)

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marcvangend profile image
Marc

Thanks for sharing. AFAIK, these is no pages/_document file by default, you have to create it yourself to override the default behavior.
But I'm wondering: is it really necessary here to start using a customized _document? You could also use next/head in pages/_app to add the code snippet to the head.

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thomasledoux1 profile image
Thomas Ledoux Author

Hey Marc,

I haven't tested this with pages/_app yet, but I assume it would work too since you would inject the code into the

section with next/head on every page.