Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. 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: Changing the Highlighting Color.

Changing the Highlighting Color

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated December 27, 2014)

4

The Highlight tool is very helpful when you want to draw attention to different areas of a document. The highlighter works in much the same way that a highlighter pen works with a paper document. The default color used for the highlighter is yellow, but this can be easily changed to any other color you desire. This is particularly helpful if you are using a color printer and some colors print better than others.

You change the color of your highlighting by displaying the Home tab of the ribbon and then clicking the down arrow at the right of the Highlight tool (Word 2007) or the Text Highlight Color tool (later versions of Word) in the Font group. You can then select from any of fifteen different colors for your highlighting.

When you change the highlight color, it does not affect any highlighting you have already done in the document. Old highlighting remains the old color; only new highlighting assumes the new color.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (9384) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Changing the Highlighting Color.

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

Forcing Dates Forward

Want to push a date to some pre-defined day of the month? Here's some ways to force the issue.

Discover More

Printing Columns and Rows

If you want to print just the contents of a number of rows and columns, it can be challenging to get the output you want. ...

Discover More

Making PROPER Skip Certain Words

The PROPER worksheet function is used to change the case of text so that only the first letter of each word is uppercase. ...

Discover More

Do More in Less Time! Are you ready to harness the full power of Word 2013 to create professional documents? In this comprehensive guide you'll learn the skills and techniques for efficiently building the documents you need for your professional and your personal life. Check out Word 2013 In Depth today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Losing All Formatting in a Document

Have you ever made a formatting change to a couple of characters or to a paragraph, only to see those changes affect text ...

Discover More

Adjusting Bottoms of Pages

When you allow Word to naturally flow your text through a document, you may find that the text on each page ends at a ...

Discover More

Stubborn Highlighting

When you make extensive edits to a document and those edits include changing the formatting of numbered or bulleted lists, ...

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. 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 3 + 4?

2016-07-19 22:36:44

Jann

I have been asking MS Word for YEARS to PLEASE give us a choice of lighter highlight colors. EVERYONE wants light colors to highLIGHT. NO ONE wants to obliterate words with the dark color options you have provided.

PLEASE??????????? Has anyone at Microsoft tried out the pallet of high"lighting" color options provided by Word?

Please?


2016-04-30 09:33:52

Alan

Alison, I forgot to mention that (again in Word 2010) using the Borders and Shading dialog box, if I click on the down triangle at the right of the fill textbox, I get Theme Colors, Standard Colors and More Colors...
This last option opens the Colors dialog box where I can select from a hexagon shaped palette of colours or use the Custom tab to enter RGB or HSL numbers to generate loads of colours.


2016-04-30 09:27:14

Alan

Alison, I use Word 2010.
In this, when I select a word or words and then use Borders and Shading, all I have to do is remember to go to the 'Apply to' box at the bottom of the Preview pane and change it to Text rather than Paragraph.
Word then applies shading to just the word or words that I selected.


2016-03-29 10:36:30

Alison

Change to "any color you desire" means "any of 15 violent neon colors you desire" right? I want to do some more gentle highlighting to indicate a different kind of information in a document. Borders and Shading is the obvious solution but I cant stop it from taking a whole paragraph. Is there a way to highlight in something other than the 15 colours?


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.