How to Use Different Colored Fonts & Sizes in Apple Notes for ios

Updated May 2018

I used to use Evernote exclusively until ios 9 when Apple revamped their ios  Notes App. Back then Evernote for ios only used one font size and color. So I created a workaround that I used a lot up until Evernote 8 came out for ios last fall (2016.) This is a sample font sheet I created for a post I wrote about how to use different colors and sizes of fonts in Evernote for ios.

Evernote Font Cheat Sheet


When ios 9 came out and I learned about all the new features of Apple Notes I began using the app more. Especially because using split screen multitasking view was also a brand new feature, and the ability to take notes while I was researching things ended up saving me a lot of time.

I loved the new fonts sizes and I discovered one odd quirk to their system which allowed me to used even more fonts than were normally allowed by using an iPad mini. For some odd reason the font weights are different on the mini…so the regular font is lighter and the bold is less bold…which effectively gives me 4 font weights instead of the normal 2. This was about a year before Evernote came out with Evernote 8, their huge upgrade which gives ios users 8 different font colors and 3 sizes. Evernote’s news was a huge one for the note taking world!

It appeared to me that there was absolutely no way to use a greater variety of fonts and sizes than in Evernote…but I was wrong!

You Can Add Colored & Different Sized Fonts Using an Apple Computer

We have a Mac computer that we don’t really use very much and just basically got to backup our iCloud photos and data. One day I was searching for a note on my iPad which I found, but there were several other notes in the same folder and I couldn’t figure out which folder they were in. I still haven’t figured out if there’s a way to determine which folder a note is located in…because on the Mac I couldn’t find out anything more than I could on my iPad.

Update:  November 2017

I finally figured out how to identify the Folder a note is in. The way to do it is to begin the process of moving that note…and then look at all the folders to see which one is ‘greyed out.’ The ‘preyed out’  out Folder is the note’s current home.

While I didn’t answer my primary question I did make a different discovery. I figured out that I could select some text and change the font itself, the size and color of it. That was an exciting discovery! So I spent about 15 minutes creating a Font note that contained a variety of fonts, colors, and sizes. Then I went back to my iPad to see how the note looked.  It looked the same as it did on the Mac computer!

Even more exciting is that those different colors and sizes can be pasted into other Apple notes and they retain the same formatting!

This was exciting because any other method I used to paste fonts into Apple Notes, the fonts wouldn’t be retained…the words pasted in would revert to one of the standard Apple note fonts.

Below is an example of the note I created on the Mac computer.

Colored fonts

My Best Idea to Share Some of My Different Sized Colored Fonts in an Apple Note

I used a similar method for getting different font colors and sizes into Evernote. You can read about that here and see the colored font cheat sheets I created for that post. The problem is that Apple Notes doesn’t export in it’s own format to anything that can be used for uploading to my website. I can convert to a PDF but then the fonts won’t retain their formatting. So I finally came up with trying to create one note with a sampling of some of my different sized colored fonts. Below is a screenshot of it and here’s a link to it.

My Sample Note with Various Colors and Sizes

Image 1449

Colored Highlights

Since Apple Notes doesn’t use any kind of highlighters this trick isn’t possible for Notes. But it does work for Evernote and it’s still pretty helpful because even with the advent of Evernote 8 there is only one highlighter color…yellow. Here’s a link to my post about how to use many different colors for highlighting in Evernote. The post includes some downloadable highlight sheet sheets to save you time.

All My Guides to Using Different Sizes and Colors for Fonts in Mobile Evernote

The Exact Method I Used to Create a Colored Font Sheet for Apple Notes

I used a Mac Mini and created a new note I called ‘Colored Fonts Cheat Sheet.’ When that note synced to my iPad I select the color and font size from that sheet that I need, and copy paste a word that uses those specific color and size properties into the note in which I want to include a new color.  Where I place the pasted word is important…because anything that I type that immediately follows the pasted word will display in the same size and color.

If I want to stop using that color at some point…I need to paste in another word in one of the standard sizes and then begin typing immediately after it. So this workaround works under the following conditions:

1. If you have a Mac computer that you can use to create the Cheat Sheet on. (Because you can use Notes with iCloud on PC’s, it may be possible to use the same concept that way…but I don’t have a Windows machine  to check that out, so  I don’t know for sure.)

2. After creating your Cheat Sheet in the Mac you need to make sure you have iCloud syncing for Notes turned on in settings for both ios devices.

3.  Only the words that you type immediately after the pasted in word will display in the different color.

My Posts About How to Use This Same Method with Evernote

Here’s a list to the 4 guides I’ve written to using different colored fonts, different sized fonts, different fonts, and different colored highlights for my 2 favorite notes apps…Evernote and Apple Notes. They are listed from most current to oldest.

How to Change Font Colors and Sizes in Evernote 8 for ios

How to Use Different Colored Fonts and Sizes in Apple Notes for ios

How to Change Fonts, Fonts Colors and Sizes in Evernote Apps on Mobile Devices

How to Use Different Colored Highlights in Mobile Evernote


I received a comment recently that I can’t display because I had comments setup incorrectly for this post. But it was asking me to spell out exactly what method I employed to use colored and various sized fonts with Apple notes on ios. So I’m adding a brief section right above the Evernote Links section called  ‘The Exact Method I Used to Create a Colored Font Sheet for Apple Notes.’

I have the comments problem fixed now I think, so please feel free to leave any comments for me below. The comment box is found by scrolling down further the screen.

About vsajewel

Hi...I'm the author of 2 main blogs on WordPress...vsatips...where I write tech tips for mobile devices...primarily ios...2nd is vsatrends...where I write less about tech things and more about everything else. I also host a YouTube channel which I use to better illustrate some of the 'how to's' in my posts. I love everything about technology. Currently, my main interests/platforms are ios, Windows and Amazon Echo. Recently I decided we were spending way too much money with our local cable provider. So I decided to cut the cord. There is a definite learning curve, especially the antennae part, but we successfully did that and are now saving a boatload of money, so I write some about that. I also am extremely conscientious about security because of an event my family endured , so I write a lot about that too. Two sub-categories of security I tend to focus on are the password manager Dashlane and Hardware Firewalls. Last, I take a lot of notes and have been a beta tester for Evernote for many years. I love Evernote! In recent years Apple has beefed up Apple Notes a it’s become a fairly serious note long as its OK if you lose or mess up all your Apple note data. I write about those 2 note platforms primarily.
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