50 Inspiring Resume Designs: And What You Can Learn From Them

Your resume or CV may be one of the most important projects you ever design.

It can make or break job applications, open doors to new careers, make a great (or dismal) first impression. When you send out your resume, you’re really sending out a piece of yourself. So make sure it’s representing you to your best advantage. Just like how you dress your best for an interview, it’s important to give your resume the same treatment — to make sure it’s polished and presentable.

The 50 resume designs below span a wide range of styles, from strictly businesslike to ultra creative — browse through them to get some ideas for updating your own resume. Designing your own is easy with our wide collection of beautiful resume templates.

01. Start It Right

Starting off your resume strong with a bold header, like in this design by Shed Labs for Loft Résumés, draws attention to your name and makes it more memorable. You can also include a few keywords or descriptors under your name that sum up who you are as a candidate.

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02. Space It Out

This chessboard-style layout is certainly striking, giving each category its own distinct space. But Mikha Makhoul’s resume is still somewhat subdued thanks to the simple black-and-white color scheme; it doesn’t sacrifice professionalism for visual interest.

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03. Make It Pop

Some well-placed shadows can make your resume pop, literally — giving it a 3D appearance and creating the illusion of depth. Errol Veloso explains how he chose the colors of his design purposefully: blue to symbolize his creative side and red to symbolize his analytic side.

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04. Emphasize What’s Important

Try using shapes and frames for emphasis. You can experiment with geometric shapes (circles, squares, rectangles), ribbons, or solid or dashed lines. Here, Michael Long frames his name and his role to help them stand out.

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05. Coordinate Your Colors

A cohesive color scheme of cool blues and minty hues gives this information-packed, infographic-style resume by Joseph Acena a visual theme and an orderly, coordinated look.

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06. Flip It

Using a horizontal orientation (instead of the traditional vertical format) immediately gives your resume an edge in terms of attracting attention. Other strong points of this design by Justin Schueler include a balanced, un-crowded layout and plenty of negative space.

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07. Start a Conversation

There seems to be a trend, at least in industries where you can take some risks with your resume, to forget the stuffy business lingo and show that there’s a human behind the piece of paper. Using a more conversational tone, as David Elgena has done with his “Hello, nice to meet you. Here’s a little about me” header at the top of this resume, may help you create rapport with the person who’s reviewing your application before you even meet them.

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08. Brand Yourself

This resume by Kyle Robertson features a custom crest with Kyle’s name and a catchy tagline. Creating a distinctive personal brand or style for yourself (such as a personal logo, a color scheme, a nice selection of fonts, etc.) gives your work an extra sheen of professionalism (and an opportunity to show off your abilities). Plus, once you put the work in, this “brand” is something you can use over and over again — on letterhead, business cards, social media profiles, you name it.

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09. Reverse It

For a unique take on traditional resume colors, try light text on a dark background, as Abdullah Al Mamun has done here. Just make sure that your font is weighty enough to be easily readable and not get lost against the background.

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10. Go Back to Basics

This clean resume by Patrick Rogan uses a bright splash of color and whittles down the information to only the basics (skills and past positions). Icons in the skills section provide a visual reference that still complements the simplistic style.

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11. Try Textured Paper

Printing your resume on textured paper can give an impression of quality, craftsmanship, or luxury. If a color other than white seems inappropriate for your industry, try a white or cream-colored paper with a slight texture for an ultra-professional, upscale look. This example by S.N. Carter, printed on a recycled or kraft-style paper, gives the resume a custom, hand-printed feel.

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12. Keep It Clean

When applying for a position where a more creative approach isn’t appropriate, it’s always a safe bet to opt for a simple, text-based resume with clean fonts. Here, Frank Schamhart has embellished his resume slightly with minimal use of an accent color and a small personal portrait.

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13. Illustrate Your Skills

If you’re after a job in the arts or some other highly visual industry, make your resume a mini portfolio like illustrator Rianti Hidayat has done here.

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14. Make It Modular

Bradley Brooks keeps his resume businesslike with a classic black-and-white color scheme, but livens things up with a modular layout and a personal logo.

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15. Picture It

Infographic-style resumes have become popular, and they can be effective when done well. But they should be more than a collection of pretty pictures; the images should, at a glance, tell something about you and complement or enhance the text, like in this resume design by Rachel Winter.

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16. Personalize It

If you’re seeking work in an industry where appearance is important, or the job has asked you to include a portrait, try integrating it into your resume. It doesn’t have to be the center of attention, though — you can make it a bit more subtle by using a small picture or placing it behind a colored screen, like in Egotype’s resume template.

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17. Make It Memorable

Mailing out some resumes? Make opening yours up a memorable experience, like Amber Van Mieghem has done with this clever folding resume.

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18. Use a Monogram

Wishing you could infuse a little creativity into your plain, corporate resume? Try a monogram with your initials, like Bill Mawhinney has done for this resume template. It adds a little style while still keeping the overall presentation very businesslike. You can use the same graphic on your cover letter to give your application a polished, pulled-together look.

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19. Shape Up

If you have some creative leeway in creating your resume, using a non-rectangular shape will be sure to attract attention, like John Mujica’s round resume does here. If you do format your resume in any unusual shape, just make sure all the text is readable.

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20. Highlight Your Name

You’ve only got one name. Make it memorable. If it’s unique, highlight it. Make it big and bold, like Fredrik Andresen did on his resume. Give the hiring manager something to zero in on.

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21. Choose Fonts Carefully

Your font choices can change the whole character of your resume. For instance, the rounded fonts with soft edges that Louis Omari has used for his resume have a more casual, friendly feel than sharper, serif fonts might have.

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22. Go Mobile

Need to show your qualifications on the run? Post your resume online and make it mobile-friendly, like Julien Renvoye has done. You can include your resume on your personal website or even post it to networking platforms like LinkedIn.

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23. Play with Blocks

Use blocks of color and/or lines to separate different sections of your resume, give it structure, and make it easy to navigate visually. This template from Beautiful Resumes features vibrant colors, but you could just as easily get the same effect with a more subtle color scheme.

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24. Get Graphical

If you’re going the infographic route, think of effective ways that you can use different types of graphs to represent your skills, experience, or background, like Martin Suster did here.

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25. Stay Organized

Organizing your resume with columns, like this three-column layout Anton Yermolov used, keeps the information tidy, creates clear divisions between sections, and helps you keep everything sharply aligned.

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26. Include a Sidebar

Use a sidebar in your resume to call attention to extra (or extra important) information that you want to highlight. Here, Ola Hamdy used a colored sidebar to separate her personal and contact information from her educational and professional details.

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27. Get Creative

Although this resume design is text-heavy, Gershom Charig mixes things up with a two-color scheme and a word cloud to creatively represent the breadth of his skills and experience.

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28. Get Creative: Part 2

Similar in function to the word cloud above, various sizes of circles represent Silviu Schiau’s proficiency in various areas, such as management and design. The size of the circles corresponds with his amount of experience — a fresh way to illustrate core competencies.

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29. Encourage Interaction

Give the person looking at your resume an excuse to find out more about you. Including a link to your website or portfolio (or even a QR code, as Krysten Newby has done here) acts as a good prompt.

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30. Brag a Little

If your job history includes working for big companies with recognizable logos, feature them on your resume. Tamás Léb has included space to do so on this resume template, and it makes an impressive statement, even at a glance.

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31. Pick a Theme

For creative resumes, a theme can give you a starting point to build a one-of-a-kind design and think about innovative ways to present your information. Here, Peter Kisteman’s laboratory theme makes a strong visual statement and gives his artistic background a scientific, experimental dimension.

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32. Fold It Up

Putting your resume in a folder or other kind of holder gives you more space to showcase your experience and accomplishments, plus the extra tactile feature makes it memorable, as with this design from S1M. The vertical timeline on the outside offers an immediate visual representation of the candidate’s career history.

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33. Use an Accent Color

This traditional black, white, and gray design by Brice Séraphin brightens up quite nicely with some turquoise as an accent. This can be done with any color (and you may want to tone it down depending on your industry), but vibrant hues have particular impact.

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34. Stick with Simple

Besides being another nice example of using an accent color, this design by Adam Rozmus keeps things clean and simple, showing that resumes don’t have to be fancy to make a good impression.

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35. Package It Up

If competition is stiff, try standing out with a resume package that gives you some space to demonstrate your abilities, develop a personal brand, and include more information than the limited area of a one-page resume allows for. Here, Sabraé Precure uses a distinct color scheme and custom illustrations to stand out from the crowd.

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36. Combine Styles

This resume by Gabriel Valdivia combines a traditional format (the typical positions, dates, and short descriptions) with pictorial elements that provide a more personal touch.

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37. Be Clever

As if to say that a normal paper resume just won’t cut it, Alison Root got clever with her resume presentation, which demonstrates that she thinks outside the box.

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38. Be Bold

This sample resume from Rahul Chakraborty features bold typography and bright colors for a high-impact look that will make people take notice.

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39. Have a Laugh

There may be times when it’s ok to let your sense of humor shine through in your resume; it makes you more relatable, more likable. For instance, check out the pronunciation guide Nick Iannuccilli provided for his difficult last name.

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40. Frame It

Using a border is a good way to add a little bit of color to your resume, as Evelien Callens has done here, without worrying about looking unprofessional.

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41. Compromise & Coordinate

Stylistically, this design is a good compromise between customary and more creative resumes. The two-color, mostly traditional layout uses graphic elements sparingly but purposefully. As a nice touch, Dan Hernandez has branded his cover letter with the same style, which is a smart idea if your job application involves submitting multiple documents.

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42. Stand Out

Sometimes you have to do what you can to get noticed. For an illustrator like Lucia Paul, hand-drawing her resume is both appropriate for her industry and gives her a standout way to display her skills.

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43. Go Big or Go Home

Big, bold typography, a high-contrast color scheme, and a well-organized presentation all combine to make sure João Andrade’s resume gets looked at.

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44. Get to the Point

No long-winded explanations of job roles here. Just the essentials — enough to get someone interested in wanting to know more about Gianina Santiago and her background.

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45. Make It Minimal

Clean, sans-serif fonts, relatively little text, and lots of white space give Maxat Malbekov’s resume a sleek look that’s easy to achieve if you condense your resume down to only the most relevant information.

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46. Pack It In

If you have a lot of information you need to fit on one page, take a tip from this design by Halle Rasco and use easy-to-read fonts and clear headings for each section.

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47. Be Conservative

Need to keep your resume fairly conservative? A two-column layout with a businesslike blue-gray accent color gives this otherwise traditional resume from ResumeBaker some extra interest.

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48. Be Yourself

Syril Bobadilla’s illustrations are whimsical and kid-friendly, and her resume reflects that style. Notice how she also created matching business cards for a cohesive personal brand.

Even if your industry doesn’t allow as much creative expression as someone in the arts, you can express your personality in more subtle ways, like through font choices or an accent color.

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49. Experiment with Layout

Resumes don’t always have to read from left to right, top to bottom. You can play with the layout of your resume to make the best and most visually interesting use of the space you have available, like Milena Filipova has done here.

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50. Go on the Grid

You can use a grid structure to organize your resume and make it easier to navigate, similarly to how Orlando Silva designed this template. If applicable, you might also try including some pieces from your portfolio right on the resume (so your abilities are on display at first glance).

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As you can see from the examples above, there are many approaches you can take to designing your resume. But no matter what style or format you choose, there are a few things you want to make sure to get right:

  • Readable text
  • Industry-appropriate style (if unsure, play it safe with a conservative design.)
  • Updated and accurate information
  • No spelling/grammar errors

Now it’s your turn. Put these skills into action!

Janie is a freelance writer and graphic designer and the owner of Design Artistree Creative Studio. After college, she built on her background in art to explore design...and loved it. Now, she enjoys finding ways to combine the craftsmanship of traditional fine arts with the digital possibilities of graphic design.