Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Absolutely Getting Rid of Formatting.

Absolutely Getting Rid of Formatting

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated May 4, 2019)

3

If you are working with a document that is highly formatted, and you are looking for a quick and easy way to get rid of any and all formatting for a selection of text, here is a quick way to do it:

  1. Highlight your text selection.
  2. Cut or copy the selection to the Clipboard.
  3. In Windows, start the Notepad accessory.
  4. Paste the Clipboard contents (your selection) into the Notepad.

Since the Notepad accessory can only work with unformatted text, all formatting for your text selection is removed. You can then either save your selection as a text file or copy it back to the Clipboard and paste it back into Word.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (7065) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Absolutely Getting Rid of Formatting.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Extracting INCLUDEPICTURE File Names

If you use the INCLUDEPICTURE field to add images to your document, you may love the macro in this tip. It allows you to ...

Discover More

Turning Off Dynamic Menus

You may want to adjust the way that Excel displays its various menus. This tip explains how you can turn off the dynamic ...

Discover More

Putting Something in Every Cell of a Table

Need to make sure that all the cells of a table have something in them? It's easy to do with a handy little macro.

Discover More

Learning Made Easy! Quickly teach yourself how to format, publish, and share your content using Word 2013. With Step by Step, you set the pace, building and practicing the skills you need, just when you need them! Check out Microsoft Word 2013 Step by Step today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Automatic AutoCorrect Exceptions for Beginning Sentences

When automatically capitalizing the beginning of sentences, Word relies on how you historically have done your typing. ...

Discover More

Understanding Mirror Margins

Rather than have the margins of your documents always be the same, you can use what Word calls "mirror margins." Here's ...

Discover More

Adding a Background to Your Document

Document backgrounds come in handy if you plan on converting the document to a Web page. Here's how you can add a ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 6 + 8?

2019-05-23 14:05:09

STEVEN BENEFIELD

If you copy and paste, text only, in another Word document, does it also get rid of all formatting?


2019-05-04 21:29:09

George Sutton

One thing which bothers me from time to time in many blogs and posts is the use of the word "Highlight" to describe selecting text or other data. The correct word to use is "Select". Highlight and Select mean two totally different things.

To highlight means to use the highlighter tool and change the background colour of a piece of text. All it does is add colour. You cannot copy, delete or change font when you do this. It is the same as grabbing a highlighter pen and highlighting a passage in a book or other printed medium.

To Select means just that: you select some text so you can perform some action on it like copy, delete, change font and so on.

Cheers to all.


2019-05-04 10:32:48

Erik Eilertsen

I imagine an easier way (for me) would be to open an email and format it for plaintext then paste my copy into it. Then agree to the warning that you will lose all formatting? You now have your text in plaintext and can copy it back to wherever you want it and reformat it as you like


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.