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Top 10 branding design trends in 2018

Updated: Jul 26, 2020

When talking about a brand's design, many companies focus on the creation of a logo, a name and a slogan—but in reality, that's not all you need. Although design trends change every year, there is something that always remains. The purpose of a professional design is to convey the message of the brand and have a lasting influence on the new techniques and new visual trends in the new year. For all those who want to change their brand's graphics or who want to give a visual identity to their project, here are nine logo trends that should inspire you. Follow these trends in 2018 to strengthen your brand.


The colors and shapes of business designs in previous years trended towards a minimal aesthetic, but that should not be the case forever. We can adjust to have a colorful 2018! Bold colors and are now in fashion. 3D illusions are also now in—the term refers to a product in a loud tone, is often positioned on the same color background, so that it stands out only by its three-dimensionality. It's a very nice stylistic element, which we will certainly encounter more often next year.

In terms of color, the "Color Channels Effect" is also very much on the rise. Graphic artists tease out the color channels in design software, creating an effect reminiscent of a hallucination—altered and mystical. A nice example of this is the current movie poster by Flatliners .

2. Flat 2.0

Monochrome was popular last year, especially in flat design. These and modern design elements, which lend depth with realistic effects (i.e. through gradients and shadows), seem to like to take turns in the limelight. In 2018 we will not experience either one or the other, but a third variant—a combination of both: Flat 2.0.

Here, flat elements are mixed with elements that make the design no longer seem so, such as with shadows or gradients. We take this refreshing design style, which has already come to our notice this year, into the New Year, where it will certainly find more use.

3. Typography, typography, typography!

Excellent typography will always be fashionable. With each new project, designers are faced with the challenge of finding innovative ways to generate attention with Typo so that it carries the design. Big and bolded fonts are still in. In the coming year, we will especially see the comeback of serif fonts, which were largely avoided in previous years. They've been left out due to the general desire for compatibility across platforms. That will change in the coming year; due to the increased inclusion in Google fonts, serif fonts are again an option in 2018 and will find the attention they once had.

The great thing about typography is that it can stand alone, without supporting graphics, to underline your statement. However, it's difficult to execute properly. Typo alone has a strong effect—bold, italic, serif or sans-serif, symmetrical or asymmetrical. One new eye-catching 2018 trend is incomplete letters. Logically, this is rather inappropriate for continuous texts, as it makes readability difficult and should be avoided in general, but a single word or a short headline with incomplete letters can be interesting and eye-catching.

Even negative spacing is a great effect that will make it into the New Year as well. The empty space between (or inside of) letters and words is indeed a design element that must be considered. What is often desired in logos is therefore also excellent in typography. It gives a term, such as a pure word mark, an exciting "a-ha!" effect. Two well-known logos that have done this well are are FedEx and Formula One.


The negative spacing in the text is analogous the double exposure of photos and graphics. In this technique, two graphics are merged into one. The silhouette of a wolf, for example, is superimposed over a picture of its habitat. We have frequently seen this kind of design on CD covers and movie posters, but it will also accompany us in the corporate design sphere into the new year.

Another eye-catcher that will be in vogue in the new year is the combination of photo material and illustration. Here, reality is mixed with fantasy, and elaborate photo ideas are made easier to execute. Mainly, however, it offers an exciting new way to design advertising for all media.


Funny doodles such as those on the product packages of the brand Xucker look refreshingly personal, even a little cheeky, and serve as a model for other young startups with organic products. This personal touch pleases the eye and looks good not only in drawings, but also in words. Sketches and manuscripts will therefore be successful in the coming year.


As the number of consumers using smartphones will only increase, so will the demands on the adaptability of graphics (especially logos). What works on desktop should also work on mobile, even if that means making additional assets. One version of the design is no longer enough.



With their "handmade" style, illustrations add a personal, fun touch to differentiate your brand from its competitors. In many contexts, illustrations are preferred to digital graphics to explain complex problems or give instructions. The illustration will be used more and more in content packaging to tell a story and make products more accessible to consumers.

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Inspired by Scandinavian design, this trend is characterized by the use of basic shapes, clean layouts and simple typography. The famous expression "Less is more", associated with the German architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, is a perfect representation of this trend.

This trend will be all the more true for packaging that wants to be simple and elegant, in order to highlight the product. When you choose the principle "What you see is what you get", the consumer knows exactly what they're buying. In 2018, 60% of the industry's food packaging will leave room for transparent materials and easily readable ingredients, as today's consumers are more concerned about the origin of food and the manufacturing process.


This year, we recommend the vibrant colors, used alone, duo or gradient. Leave out the pastels and unsaturated colors. Remember that a few months ago, Pantone crowned Greenery the color of the year: a refreshing yellow-green that "symbolizes new beginnings, vitality and the pursuit of personal passions."


The final trend this year, is logos that rely on text: letters cut out, spaced or superimposed, handwritten typography, combinations of letters and/or characters drawn by hand and then transposed to a computer etc.

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