Introduction

The Material Design Lite (MDL) typography component is a comprehensive approach to standardizing the use of typefaces in applications and page displays. MDL typography elements are intended to replace the myriad fonts used by developers (which vary significantly in appearance) and provide a robust, uniform library of text styles from which developers can choose.

The “Roboto” typeface is the standard for MDL display; it can easily be integrated into a web page using the CSS3 @font-face rule. However, Roboto is most simply accessed and included using a single standard HTML <link> element, which can be obtained at this Google fonts page.

Because of the many possible variations in font display characteristics in HTML and CSS, MDL typography aims to provide simple and intuitive styles that use the Roboto font and produce visually attractive and internally consistent text results. See the typography component’s Material Design specifications page for details.

Basic use

Include a link to the Google stylesheet that accesses the font and its desired variations.

<head>
<link
 href='http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Roboto:400,400italic,500,500italic,700,700italic'
 rel='stylesheet' type='text/css'>
...
</head>

To include an MDL typography component:

 1. Code any element (<div>,<p>,<span>, etc.) that can contain text, including whatever content is appropriate.

<p>This is a standard paragraph.</p>

 2. Add one or more MDL classes, separated by spaces, to the element using the class attribute.

<p class="mdl-typography--body-1">This is a standard paragraph.</p>

The typography component is ready for use.

Examples

A “headline” paragraph.

<p class="mdl-typography--headline">Regular 24px</p>

A “title” paragraph.

<p class="mdl-typography--title">Medium 20px</p>

A “caption” span.

<span class="mdl-typography--caption">Regular 12px</span>

A “button” span.

<span class="mdl-typography--button">Medium (All Caps) 14px</span>

A “display 1” table cell.

<td class="mdl-typography--display-1">Regular 34px</td>

A “body-1” paragraph, also uppercased.

<p class="mdl-typography--body-1 mdl-typography--text-uppercase">
 This is a standard paragraph, but uppercased.
</p>

Note: Because the Roboto font is intended to apply to the entire page, standard “unclassed” HTML elements (e.g., heading levels, divs, paragraphs, spans, tables, etc. with no class attribute) and text modifiers (e.g., strong, em, small, etc.) will use Roboto, while also retaining their inherent and/or inherited characteristics.

Also note that MDL typography provides some automatic adjustments based on its display environment. For example, the body-1 style renders at 14px on a mobile device, but 13px on a desktop. You need not do anything to activate these self-modifiers; they are built into the MDL styles.

Configuration options

The MDL CSS classes specify the style to use. The table below lists the available classes and their effects.

MDL class Effect Remarks
mdl-typography--body-1 Regular 14px (Device), Regular 13px (Desktop) Optional
mdl-typography--body-1-force-preferred-font Regular 14px (Device), Regular 13px (Desktop) Optional
mdl-typography--body-2 Medium 14px (Device), Medium 13px (Desktop) Optional
mdl-typography--body-2 mdl-typography-body-2 Optional
mdl-typography--body-2-color-contrast Body with color contrast Optional
mdl-typography--body-2-force-preferred-font Medium 14px (Device), Medium 13px (Desktop) Optional
mdl-typography--button Medium (All Caps) 14px Optional
mdl-typography--caption Regular 12px Optional
mdl-typography--caption-color-contrast Caption with color contrast Optional
mdl-typography--display-1 Regular 34px Optional
mdl-typography--display-1-color-contrast Display with color contrast Optional
mdl-typography--display-2 Regular 45px Optional
mdl-typography--display-3 Regular 56px Optional
mdl-typography--display-4 Light 112px Optional
mdl-typography--headline Regular 24px Optional
mdl-typography--menu Medium 14px (Device), Medium 13px (Desktop) Optional
mdl-typography--subhead Regular 16px (Device), Regular 15px (Desktop) Optional
mdl-typography--subhead-color-contrast Subhead with color contrast Optional
mdl-typography--table-striped Striped table Optional
mdl-typography--text-capitalize Capitalized text Optional
mdl-typography--text-center Center aligned text Optional
mdl-typography--text-justify Justified text Optional
mdl-typography--text-left Left aligned text Optional
mdl-typography--text-lowercase Lowercased text Optional
mdl-typography--text-nowrap No wrap text Optional
mdl-typography--text-right Right aligned text Optional
mdl-typography--text-uppercase Uppercased text Optional
mdl-typography--title Medium 20px Optional
mdl-typography--title-color-contrast Title with color contrast Optional