Copy formatting using the Format Painter

Use the Format Painter to quickly copy formatting from one thing in a document to another. Just select the thing you like the look of, click Format Painter, and then click the thing you want to change to look the same. Format Painter picks up all the formatting from your first thing, whether it’s a shape, cell, picture border, or piece of text, and applies it to the second. The steps and options vary slightly depending on which app you're using. Pick your app to learn more:

My app is:

Excel

Outlook

PowerPoint

Publisher

Word

Note: Format Painter features may be unavailable or limited in Office Online. For full functionality, edit your document using the desktop version of your app.

Excel

  1. Select the shape, text, picture, or worksheet cell with the formatting you want to copy.

  2. Click Home, and in the Clipboard group, click Format Painter.

    Shows the Format Painter button in Excel

  3. After the pointer changes to a paintbrush, click and drag to select the shape, text, or worksheet cell that you want to format, and then release the mouse button.

    Dragging across text to apply copied formatting

    To copy the formatting to a single cell, several cells, or a range or ranges of cells, drag the mouse pointer across the cells or ranges of cells that you want to format.

Tips: If you want to copy the formatting to more than one thing, double-click Format Painter instead of single-clicking it. Your copied formatting will be applied to everything you click until you press Esc.

To quickly copy the width of one column or row to a second column or row, select the heading of the first column or row, click Format Painter, and then click the heading of the second column or row. You can’t copy the width if the column or row contains a merged cell.

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Outlook

  1. In an email message, select the text, shape, or picture with the formatting you want to copy.

    To copy text formatting, select a portion of a paragraph. To copy text and paragraph formatting, select an entire paragraph, including the paragraph mark.

  2. Click Message, and in the Clipboard group, click Format Painter.

    Shows Format Painter button in a new message in Outlook

  3. After the pointer changes to a paintbrush icon, click and drag to select the text, shape, or picture you want to format, and then release the mouse button.

    Dragging across text to apply copied formatting

Tips:  The Format Painter is also available in appointments, meetings, and tasks. You can find it on the Format Text tab in the Clipboardgroup.

If you want to copy the formatting to more than one thing, double-click Format Painter instead of single-clicking it. Your copied formatting will be applied to everything you click until you press Esc.

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PowerPoint

  1. Select the text, shape, or picture with the formatting you want to copy.

  2. Click Home, and in the Clipboard group, click Format Painter.

    Shows the Format Painter button in PowerPoint

  3. After the pointer changes to a paintbrush icon, click and drag to select the text, shape, or picture you want to format, and then release the mouse button.

    Dragging across text to apply copied formatting

Tips:  If you've added an animation, you can use the Animation Painter on the Animations pane to quickly copy the animation to another object or slide.

Animation Painter

If you want to copy the formatting to more than one thing, double-click Format Painter instead of single-clicking it. Your copied formatting will be applied to everything you click until you press Esc.

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Publisher

  1. Select the text, shape, or picture with the formatting you want to copy.

  2. Click Home, and in the Clipboard group, click Format Painter.

    Shows the Format Painter button in Publisher

  3. After the pointer changes to a paintbrush icon, click and drag to select the text, shape, or picture, you want to format, and then release the mouse button.

    Dragging across text to apply copied formatting

Tip: If you want to copy the formatting to more than one thing, double-click Format Painter instead of single-clicking it. Your copied formatting will be applied to everything you click until you press Esc.

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Word

  1. Select the text or graphic that has the formatting you want to copy.

    To copy text formatting, select a portion of a paragraph. To copy text and paragraph formatting, select all of a paragraph, including the paragraph mark.

  2. Click Home, and in the Clipboard group, click Format Painter.

    Shows the Format Painter button in the Home tab in Word

  3. After the pointer changes to a paintbrush icon, click and drag to select the text or graphic that you want to format, and then release the mouse button.

    Dragging across text to apply copied formatting

Tip: If you want to copy the formatting to more than one thing, double-click Format Painter instead of single-clicking it. Your copied formatting will be applied to everything you click until you press Esc.

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