Customize your email message in Outlook.com

Customize a new email message in Outlook.com by using the many options Outlook offers. No matter what type of message—personal or business —you're writing, you can always find a way to add your unique style.

You can add an attachment or an image (a picture, texture, or graphic), change fonts, insert a list, a signature, and more.

Choose your version for instructions

The instructions are slightly different depending on whether or not you're using the Outlook.com beta. Choose which version of Outlook.com you're using to see the troubleshooting steps that apply to you.

IF YOUR MAILBOX LOOKS LIKE...

A screenshot of the top left corner of the Outlook.com beta mailbox

See Instructions for the Outlook.com beta.

IF YOUR MAILBOX LOOKS LIKE...

A screenshot of the top left corner of the classic Outlook.com mailbox

See Instructions for classic Outlook.com.

Instructions for the Outlook.com beta

To start writing a new email message, sign in to Outlook.com and then select New message.

You can set the level of importance for a message so that recipients can see the indicator in their Inbox before they open it. Setting the level of importance also lets recipients sort their messages by importance.

To change the importance of your message, select the three dots at the top of the new message you're writing More actions and then select Set importance. You can choose High, Normal, or Low.

  1. Select the Attach icon Attach at the bottom of the email message box.

  2. Choose whether you want to attach a file from Computer or from Cloud locations.

  3. Navigate to the location of the file, select the file, and then select Open.

If you want to add an image that displays in the body of your email, you can add an inline image.

  1. Select Insert pictures inline Insert pictures inline next to Send at the bottom of the email message box.

  2. Browse to the location of the picture file on your computer, select the file, and then select Open.

Emoticons, also known as emoji, are graphics that convey an emotion. You can add a variety of emoticons to your messages. You can also choose from popular GIFs to add to your messages.

  • To insert an emoticon, select the Emoji icon Choose this icon to add an emoticon in your email message at the bottom of the email message, scroll to Popular emojis, and then choose an emoticon.

  • To insert a GIF, select the Emoji icon Choose this icon to add an emoticon in your email message at the bottom of the email message, scroll to Popular GIFs, and then choose a GIF.

Note: Not all email programs display emoticons the same way. An emoticon that is colorful on one client might be translated into its symbols in another. For example, Choose this icon to add an emoticon in your email message might show up in the recipient's message as :-).

You can give your email message some flair by changing the text font, size, color, and style.

  1. Select Show formatting options Show formatting options next to Send at the bottom of the email message box. The formatting ribbon appears.

  2. Select Font Font and choose the font you prefer to write in. You can also change the font size, font color, make the text bold, or underline, or italicize, or even highlight part of your email message.

You can use bulleted or numbered lists to show steps, action items, or key takeaways in your email message.

  • To add a bulleted list in your email message, select Show formatting options Show formatting options next to Send at the bottom of the email message, and then select Bullets Bullets .

  • To add a numbered list in your email message, select Show formatting options Show formatting options next to Send at the bottom of the email message, and then select Numbering Numbering .

Insert a table to add structured information in rows and columns in your email message.

  1. Create a new message or reply to an existing message.

  2. At the bottom of the compose pane, select More formatting options Outlook.com icon > Insert table .

    A screenshot of the Insert table button

  3. Drag the pointer to choose the number of columns and rows you want in your table.

Create an email signature that appears at the end of your email messages.

  1. At the top of the page, select Settings Settings > View all Outlook settings.

  2. Select Mail > Compose and reply.

  3. In the text box, type your email signature. You can change the font, size, color, and the appearance of your signature from the options available in the ribbon on top of the text box.

  4. If you want to include your signature in new messages only, select the check box next to Automatically include my signature on new messages I compose. If you want to add your signature to the messages you forward or reply to, select Automatically include my signature on messages I forward or reply to. If you prefer both options, select both the check boxes.

  5. Choose Save when done. Your email signature will now appear on new messages, or on your replies, or on both depending on your selection.

For more ways to customize your email messages, see Customize actions on your messages in Outlook.com.

Instructions for classic Outlook.com

To start writing a new email, sign in to Outlook.com and then choose New.

You can set the level of importance for a message so that recipients can see the indicator in their Inbox before they open it. Setting the level of importance also lets recipients sort their messages by importance.

To change the importance of your message, choose the three dots at the top of the new message you're writing More actions , and then select Set importance. You can choose High, Normal, or Low.

  1. Select the Attach icon The Attach button at the bottom of the email message box.

  2. Choose whether you want to attach a file from your Computer or Cloud locations.

  3. Browse to the location of the file, select the file, and then select Open.

  4. If you want to share the file with the recipients of your email so that everyone can work on the file together, select Upload and attach as a OneDrive file. Otherwise, select Attach as a copy.

If you want to add an image that displays in the body of your email, you can add an inline image.

  1. Select Insert pictures inline Choose this icon to add an image to your email message next to Send at the bottom of the email message box.

  2. Navigate to the location of the picture file on your computer or on OneDrive, and then select Open.

    Tip: In addition to your own pictures, you can also choose from images provided via Bing. Select Bing image search and then select an image from the categories shown or type a search word or phrase in the Search box. When you find an image you like, select it and then click Insert.

Emoticons, also known as emoji, are graphics that convey an emotion. You can add a variety of emoticons to your messages.

To insert an emoticon, select the Emoji icon Choose this icon to add an emoticon in your email message at the bottom of the email message and select an emoticon.

Note: Not all email programs display emoticons in the same way. An emoticon that is colorful on one client might be translated into its symbols in another. For example, Choose this icon to add an emoticon in your email message might show up in the recipient's message as :-).

You can give your email message some flair by changing the text font, size, color, and style.

  1. Select the Formatting options The Formatting options icon next to Send at the bottom of the email message box. The formatting ribbon appears.

  2. Select Font Font , and select the font you prefer to write in. You can also change the font size, font color, make the text bold, or underline, or italicize, or even highlight part of your email message.

You can use bulleted or numbered lists to show steps, action items, or key takeaways in your email message.

  • To add a bulleted list in your email message, select Bullets Bullets .

  • To add a numbered list in your email message, select Numbering Numbering .

Insert a table to add structured information in rows and columns in your email message.

  1. Create a new message or reply to an existing message.

  2. At the bottom of the compose pane, select Insert table . If you don't see the icon, select More > Insert table .

    A screenshot of the Insert table button

  3. Drag the pointer to choose the number of columns and rows you want in your table.

Create an email signature that appears at the end of your email messages.

  1. At the top of the page, select Settings Settings > Options.

  2. In the list of Options, under Layout, select Email signature.

  3. If you want to include your signature in new messages only, select the check box next to Automatically include my signature on new messages I compose. If you want to add your signature to the messages you forward or reply to, then select Automatically include my signature on messages I forward or reply to. If you prefer both options, select both the check boxes.

  4. In the text box write your email signature. You can change the font, size, color, and the appearance of your signature from the options available in the ribbon on top of the text box. You can also add an image.

  5. Select Save when done. Your email signature will now appear on new messages, or on your replies, or on both depending on your selection.

Still need help?

Community Forum button Contact Support button

See Also

Create, reply to, or forward email messages in Outlook.com

Expand your Office skills
Explore training
Get new features first
Join Office Insiders

Was this information helpful?

Thank you for your feedback!

Thank you for your feedback! It sounds like it might be helpful to connect you to one of our Office support agents.

×