When I compose a new Gmail message, the text defaults to a small font size.
How do I reverse this and make it use the normal-sized font again?
I'm not sure what I've done to cause it to use the small font in the first place.
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Under "Settings" on the "General" tab, you should see something like this:
This allows you to define how your default text looks: which font is used*, font size (Small, Normal, Large, Huge), and font color. (There is an additional button to remove existing formatting you may have applied.)
If that doesn't do what you need you may need to increase the font in your browser. (Ctrl+mousewheel is probably the quickest way to do that.)
* currently Sans Serif, Serif, Wide, Narrow, Comic Sans MS, Courier New, Garamond, Georgia, Tahoma, Trebuchet MS, or Verdana
Use the icons in the formatting toolbar above the compose window to enhance your messages.
Rich formatting is not available in Gmail's basic HTML view or in your signature settings. If you decide you'd like to write a message in plain text format, just click Plain text along the top of the compose window.
If you wanted to change the font, size, or color of your messages in Gmail, you normally have to do so on a mail-by-mail basis. Not so anymore, if you enable a new default text styling option from the Labs.
After enabling the new feature in the Labs menu from Gmail's settings, head back to the "General" tab and look for the new text box. Set your font, size, color, and other options there, and they'll stick from message to message.
Hope this helps.