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 Existing Highlighting.

Changing Existing Highlighting

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 13, 2018)

2

Do you have a document that has lots of highlighting already applied in it? Do you want to change all that highlighting from the current color to a different color? If you answered yes to these questions, you can use the find and replace capabilities of Word to achieve the desired results. Follow these steps:

  1. Use the Highlight tool to specify the color you want as the "after" color; the one you want to change to. (Click the drop-down arrow at the right of the Highlight tool and select the color you want.)
  2. Press Ctrl+H to display the Replace tab of the Find and Replace dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Replace tab of the Find and Replace dialog box.

  4. With the insertion point in the Find What box, click Format | Highlight. (You may need to click the More button to see the Format button.)
  5. With the insertion point in the Replace With box, again click Format | Highlight.
  6. Click Replace All.

All of the highlighting in the document should change to whatever color you selected in step 1.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (9504) 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 Existing Highlighting.

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

Using the Organizer to Manage Toolbars

The Organizer is a great tool for managing different elements that can be stored in documents and templates. This tip ...

Discover More

Embedding an Excel Chart in a Word Document

Word and Excel usually work pretty well together. This means that you can easily paste charts from Excel into your Word ...

Discover More

Controlling the Italic Text Attribute

If you are formatting your document by using a macro, you may need to make some of your text italics. You do that by ...

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)

Resetting Default Character Formatting

If you need to remove any explicit character formatting from some text, you'll want to commit the shortcut in this tip to ...

Discover More

Smushing Text Together

Word gives you control over how your text appears on the page. This includes adjusting how close letters are to each ...

Discover More

X-ing Out Text

You can easily use strikethrough formatting to show deleted text in a document. What if you want to actually overprint ...

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 5 + 3?

2017-10-11 13:13:35

Guy

I have a document with passages highlighted in two different colors. Now I want to replace words in one specific highlight color with a bold format, but no highlighting anymore. Is there a way to do this and keeping the rest of highlighted passages?


2014-09-23 16:31:43

Peter Buxton

You may have to modify a style if it invokes highlighting.


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.