Skip to content

Less

Using Less as a CSS preprocessor in your project? No problemo, Font Awesome has a Less version if you’d prefer to import our styling into your workflow.

We’ll cover the basics of getting all the files you’ll need from the directory, adding Font Awesome to your compile, tools for referencing icons with ease, and more!

Grab the Files

You’ll find everything you need in the fontawesome6 directory of the Font Awesome download. Below is the list of files made specifically for Less. You can add them all to your project or pick just the ones you need.

FilesWhat They Do
fontawesome.lessMain Font Awesome compile
brands.lessBrand icon styles
solid.lessSolid icon styles
regular.lessRegular icon styles
light.lessLight icon styles
thin.lessThin icon styles
sharp-solid.lessSharp Solid icon styles
sharp-regular.lessSharp Regular icon styles
sharp-light.lessSharp Light icon styles
sharp-thin.lessSharp Thin icon styles
duotone.lessDuotone icon styles
_variables.lessWhere variables are defined that are used throughout styling
_mixins.lessUtilities used throughout styling/icon definitions
_core.lessBase icon reference class syntax and definitions
_duotone-icons.lessDuotone icon classes
_sizing.lessicon sizing support styling
_fixed-width.lessfixed-width icon support styling
_list.lessicons in a list support styling
_bordered-pulled.lessbordered + pulled icon support styling
_animated.lessanimated icon support styling
_rotated-flipped.lessrotating icons support styling
_stacked.lessstacking icons support styling
_icons.lessAll icon definitions
_screen-reader.lessscreen-reader specific and accessibility support styling
_custom-icons.lessincludes Custom Icons in a Kit Download (if you’re using one)

Adding Font Awesome to Your Compile

Copy the less folder into your project. Then copy the entire webfonts folder into your project, where your static files get served.

Open your project’s less/variables.less and edit the @fa-font-path variable to point to where you placed the webfonts folder.

@fa-font-path: '../webfonts';

In your main Less compile file, import Font Awesome by adding the core styles file, @import "less/fontawesome.less". Then import one or more styles.

// importing core styling file
@import './fontawesome/less/fontawesome.less';
@import './fontawesome/less/solid.less';
@import './fontawesome/less/brands.less';

If you wanted to use more styles, add more style imports:

// importing core styling file
@import './fontawesome/less/fontawesome.less';
// our project needs Classic Solid, Brands, and Sharp Solid
@import './fontawesome/less/solid.less';
@import './fontawesome/less/brands.less';
@import './fontawesome/less/sharp-solid.less';

Using Duotone Icons

If a project uses Duotone icons, you’ll need to @import two separate files.

// importing core styling file
@import './fontawesome/less/fontawesome.less';
// our project needs Duotone - which requires both of the following files
@import './fontawesome/less/duotone.less';
@import './fontawesome/less/\_duotone-icons.less';

Using a Downloaded Kit

Starting with version 6.4, you can now download a Kit to compile and host yourself just like you do with Font Awesome! To download your Kit, make sure the Kit’s version in Settings is set to “Latest 6.x” or if you selected a specific version, it needs to be at least 6.4. Then from the Set Up tab in your Kit, you’ll see the options for downloading. Your kit download will contain all of the Less files noted above.

Custom Icons in Downloaded Kits

If you have custom icons in your Kit, they will be included as an additional files in your Kit download.

Path to the filesWhat the files do
/webfonts/custom-icons.woff
/webfonts/custom-icons.ttf
Custom icon font in WOFF2 and TTF formats
/less/custom-icons.lessLess Preprocessor partial that handles the display of custom icons using Web Fonts

Here’s a simple example that follows the compile steps above along with custom icons:

// importing core styling file
@import './fontawesome/less/fontawesome.less';
// importing Font Awesome styles
@import './fontawesome/less/solid.less';
@import './fontawesome/less/brands.less';
// importing a kit's custom icons
@import './fontawesome/less/custom-icons.less';

Adding Icons

Once you’ve added the imports above and have your compiled CSS that includes Font Awesome set up and referenced in your project, you can add icons to your project’s HTML.

Here’s an example of how to reference icons with your compiled and hosted CSS:

<head>
<!--load your compiled CSS (including Font Awesome) -->
<link
href="/your-path-to-your-compiled-css-including-fontawesome/file.css"
rel="stylesheet"
/>
</head>
<body>
<!-- This example uses <i> element with:
1. the `fa-solid` style class for solid style
2. the `user` icon with the `fa-` prefix -->
<i class="fa-solid fa-user"></i>
<!-- Or you can use a <span> element, with classes applied in the same way -->
<span class="fa-solid fa-user"></span>
</body>

Custom Less-based CSS Rules

If you want to use any of our Less mixins or utilities, you can leverage our CSS Pseudo-elements method of adding icons to your project to do. This method is also useful when changing the HTML on your project is not an option.

Using our .fa-icon- and .fa-family- style mixins, you can easily generate custom CSS Pseudo-element rules with CSS selectors specific to your project.

// Solid style of user
.user {
.fa-icon-solid(@fa-var-user);
}
// Regular style of triangle-exclamation
.triangle-exclamation {
.fa-icon-regular(@fa-var-triangle-exclamation);
}
// Light style of newspaper
.newspaper {
.fa-icon-light(@fa-var-newspaper);
}
// Thin style of paintbrush-fine
.paintbrush-fine {
.fa-icon-thin(@fa-var-paintbrush-fine);
}
// Duotone style of camera-retro
.camera-retro {
.fa-icon-duotone(@fa-var-camera-retro);
}
// Twitter brand icon
.twitter {
.fa-icon-brands(@fa-var-twitter);
}
// Sharp Solid style of trash
.trash {
.fa-icon-solid(@fa-var-trash);
.fa-family-sharp(); // define Sharp family
}
// Sharp Regular style of trash
.trash {
.fa-icon-regular(@fa-var-trash);
.fa-family-sharp(); // define Sharp family
}
// Classic Solid style of trash
.trash {
.fa-icon-solid(@fa-var-trash);
.fa-family-classic(); // explicity setting Classic family (optional since this is Font Awesome's default)
}

Style Mixins

To use the style mixins, you’ll want to:

  1. Choose the right mixin for your desired style style.
  2. Pass in the Less variable for the icon you want to display.
Style MixinAvailabilityWhat Style Renders
fa-icon-brands()Free PlanBrands
fa-icon-solid()Free PlanSolid
fa-icon-regular()Pro onlyRegular
fa-icon-light()Pro onlyLight
fa-icon-thin()Pro onlyThin
fa-icon-duotone()Pro onlyDuotone

Family Mixins

If you’re using our mixins to render an icon in a specific family, like our Sharp family of styles, you’ll need to reference the right family mixin (e.g. .fa-family-sharp). Classic is our default family of styles, so there’s no need to set it with a family mixin unless you’re trying to explicitly set to override a previous family.

Family MixinAvailabilityWhat Style Renders
fa-family-classic()Free PlanClassic when used with other style mixins
fa-family-sharp()Pro onlySharp when used with other style mixins

A More Manual Custom CSS Approach

If you’d rather a more customizable approach when right your styling rules, we’ve made the utilties used in the style mixins available to get the same rendering results.

To write manual rules, you’ll want to:

  1. Get the core set up styling of icons by adding .fa-icon;
  2. Use .fa-solid; to include the styling to render the icon in the Solid style (similar syntax for other styles)
  3. Use .fa-classic; or .fa-sharp; to include the styling to render the icon in a specific family (Classic is set by default)
  4. In a ::before pseudo-element rule, use icon variable names to make including an icon’s Unicode values a little easier. This is similar in syntax to adding icons via pseudo-elements
// Solid style of user
.user {
.fa-icon;
.fa-solid;
&::before {
content: @fa-var-user;
}
}
// Regular style of triangle-exclamation
.triangle-exclamation {
.fa-icon;
.fa-regular;
&::before {
content: @fa-var-triangle-exclamation;
}
}
// Light style of newspaper
.newspaper {
.fa-icon;
.fa-light;
&::before {
content: @fa-var-newspaper;
}
}
// Thin style of paintbrush-fine
.paintbrush-fine {
.fa-icon;
.fa-thin;
&::before {
content: @fa-var-paintbrush-fine;
}
}
// Duotone style of camera-retro
.camera-retro {
.fa-icon;
.fa-duotone;
&::before {
content: @fa-var-camera-retro;
}
}
// Twitter brand icon
.twitter {
.fa-icon;
.fa-brands;
&::before {
content: @fa-var-twitter;
}
}
// Sharp Solid style of trash
.trash {
.fa-icon;
.fa-solid;
.fa-sharp; // define Sharp family
&::before {
content: @fa-var-trash;
}
}
// Classic Solid style of trash
.trash {
.fa-icon;
.fa-solid;
.fa-classic; // explicity setting Classic family (optional since this is Font Awesome's default)
&::before {
content: @fa-var-trash;
}
}

Included Mixins

What It Does
.fa-icon()A mixin that contains all of the base style set up for an icon (minus an icon’s style and specific name/unicode) compile
.fa-icon-solid()
.fa-icon-regular()
.fa-icon-light()
.fa-icon-thin()
.fa-icon-duotone()
.fa-icon-brands()
Mixins that contain all of the base style set up for an icon along with a specific style to render the icon in
.fa-family-sharp()
.fa-family-classic()
Mixins that, when combined with .fa-icon- style mixins, define the family of styles to be used.
.fa-size()A mixin that calculates font size and vertical alignment for the relative sizing scale
.fa-sr-only()A mixin that visually hides an element containing a text-equivalent for an icon while keeping it accessible to assistive technologies
.fa-sr-only-focusable()A mixin that is used alongside .fa-sr-only() to show the element again when it’s focused (e.g. by a keyboard-only user)

Variables

Font Awesome’s Less version also leverages several Less variables that allow for easier set-up and customization of our styling toolkit.

VariableWhat It Does
@fa-css-prefixSets the prefix (default set to fa) used on all styling toolkit CSS rules (e.g. fa-lg) + icon reference classes (e.g. fa-user)
@fa-styleSets the default icon style (using @font-face weight)
@fa-style-familySets the default font-family used
@fa-displaySets the display property (default set to inline-block) for rendered icons
@fa-font-displaySets the font-display property for Font Awesome’s icon fonts
@fa-fw-widthSets the width property for all fixed-width icons
@fa-inverseSets the color property of .fa-inverse
@fa-border-colorSets the border-color property used in bordered icons
@fa-border-paddingSets the padding property used in bordered icons
@fa-border-radiusSets the border-radius property used in bordered icons
@fa-border-styleSets the border-style property used in bordered icons
@fa-border-widthSets the border-width property used in bordered icons
@fa-li-widthSets the width property for fa-li elements when styling icons in a list icons
@fa-li-marginSets the margin-right property for fa-li elements when styling icons in a list icons
@fa-pull-marginSets the margin-left/margin-right property for pulled icons icons
@fa-primary-opacity Sets the opacity of a duotone icon’s primary layer
@fa-secondary-opacitySets the opacity of a duotone icon’s secondary layer
@fa-size-scale-baseSets the base step size that all other relative sizing steps are based on
@fa-size-scale-2xsSets the size of step used when relatively sizing icons with .fa-2xs
@fa-size-scale-xsSets the size of step used when relatively sizing icons with .fa-xs
@fa-size-scale-smSets the size of step used when relatively sizing icons with .fa-sm
@fa-size-scale-lgSets the size of step used when relatively sizing icons with .fa-lg
@fa-size-scale-xlSets the size of step used when relatively sizing icons with .fa-xl
@fa-size-scale-2xlSets the size of step used when relatively sizing icons with .fa-2xl
@fa-stack-vertical-alignSets the vertical-align property of stacked icons
@fa-stack-widthSets the width property of stacked icons
@fa-stack-z-indexSets the z-index property of stacked icons
@fa-font-pathSets the location of Font Awesome’s webfonts folder and assets.