MS Office: Format Painter saves a ton of time


I like my workpapers and reports to look nice, but I don’t like spending valuable time doing so. With the Format Painter function in Word, Excel, and Powerpoint, you can copy the format of one section, cell, row, column, etc. and apply it to another.

Here’s how:

  1. Select a section of your document. In Word, it could be a paragraph, whole page, etc. In Excel, it could be a cell, range of cells, column(s), row(s), a whole sheet, etc.
  2. Click the Format Painter button on the Home ribbon:

  3. Click and drag (if necessary) over the section you want to reformat.
    1. In Excel, click on a row or column heading to format the entire row or column.
    2. In Word, you can click on the area to the left of your content where the mouse cursor flips to format entire lines at a time:
  4. To format multiple incongruent sections, double-click the Format Painter button to keep it selected. Press ESC to deselect it.
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