Change the color, size, or format of bullets or numbers in a list

To change the formatting of the bullets or numbers in a list, click any bullet or number to select all the bullets or numbers in the list. If you select the text, the formatting of both the text and the bullets or numbering changes.

Choose a new bullet or numbering format

  1. Click a bullet or number in the list that you want to change.

    In a multiple-level list, you can change the formatting one level at a time by clicking one bullet or number at that level in the list.

  2. On the Home tab, under Paragraph, click the arrow next to Bullets or Numbering.

    World paragraph ribbon with bullets highlighted

  3. Click the bullet or numbering list format that you want in the Bullet Library or the Numbering Library.

    Chosing a new bullet style

Define a new bullet character, font, or picture

Bullets shown in the bullet library are a subset of the Word font libraries. This means you can choose a different character for your bullets. For example, you can change your dot bullets to arrows or even something like a Euro or Dollar character. You can also use an image either found through the internet, or on your computer.

  1. Click a bullet in a list to select all the bullets.

    selected list

  2. Click the down arrow next to the bullet icon. Bullets button image .

  3. At the bottom of the pop up panel, click Define New Bullet.

    Bullet drop down with Define New Bullet highlihted
  4. In the Define New Bullet panel, do one of the following:

    • To change or add a character, click Symbol. From the symbol library, choose a character and click OK.

      To change the font attributes after picking a new character, click Font. Change the style, size, and font, and then click OK.

      Define New Bullet screen with arrows
    • To add a picture, click Picture. In the Insert Pictures window, click either From a file for images on your computer, or Bing Image Search to find a picture online.

      Choose the image you want to use from your computer, or a Bing search, and then click Open or Insert.

      New bullet screen with Picture selected
  5. If your new bullets look good in the Preview, then click OK.

Change the font format, color, or size for bullets or numbers in a list

Bullet and number fonts, colors, and size are all controlled by the Font attributes. You can change the text formatting of bullets or numbers in a list without making changes to the text in the list. For example, you can format numbers or bullets with a different font color than the text in the list.

  1. Click a bullet or number in a list.

    All the bullets or numbers in the list are selected.

    selected list

  2. On the Home tab, in the Font group, make the changes that you want.

    Font ribbon on the home tab

    For example, click the arrow next to Font Color, and then click the color that you want.

You can easily change the level of a list item.

  1. Click the bullet or number that has moved out of position.

  2. On the Home tab, under Paragraph, click the arrow next to Bullets or Numbering.

    World paragraph ribbon with bullets highlighted

  3. Point to Change List Level, and then click the level that you want.

    Change the list level on your bulleted or numbered lists

  1. Click a bullet or number in the list that you want to change.

    By clicking a bullet or number in an automatically recognized bulleted or numbered list, you select the entire list.

  2. On the Home tab, in the Paragraph group, click Bullets or Numbering.

    Click Bullets or Numbers to switch between the two

    To change the list back, click either Bullets Bullets button image or Numbering Button image .

A multilevel list shows the list items at several levels rather than at one level.

outline numbered list

  1. Click a bullet or number in the list at the level that you want to change.

    By clicking a bullet or number in an automatically recognized bulleted or numbered list, you select all of the list items that are at that particular level.

    To convert the entire multilevel list to bullets or numbers, select the entire list.

  2. On the Home tab, in the Paragraph group, click Bullets or Numbering.

    Click Bullets or Numbers to switch between the two

    To change the list back, click Bullets Bullets button image or Numbering Button image .

Related topics

Create a bulleted or numbered list

Turn on or off automatic bullets or numbering

Define new bullets, numbers, and multilevel lists

Change the indent between a list bullet or number and text

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Updated May 11, 2017 thanks to customer feedback.

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