Remove and cleanup formatting in Microsoft Word

By January 5, 2015 February 1st, 2019 Business Productivity, Tech Tip

Sometimes the simplest features are the most helpful! Have you ever struggled with a Word document filled with crazy formatting that changes from one section to another? Have you copied text from a webpage to a document, but could never remove the bad line spacing?

Microsoft Word’s Clear Formatting option comes to the rescue!

  1. Highlight all the text you want to remove formatting from. If you want to clean up an entire document, hit Ctrl + A on your keyboard to select all.
  2. On the Home tab of the Ribbon, look for the Styles group on the right side.
  3. Click the down arrow button next to the styles.
  4. Choose Clear Formatting.

All the text in your document should have varying styles removed, and default to the “Normal” style.

At this point, you can select various portions of the text and apply styles such as “Heading 1”, “Heading 2”, and so on.

Switching styles

If you don’t like the particular styles in the default style set, you can quickly switch to another style set by…

  1. Going to the Home tab and looking for the Styles section on the Ribbon.
  2. Click Change Styles, and then go to Style Set.(Your Word program may be set up to have Style Set instead of Change Styles on the Ribbon, in which case, just click Style Set.)
  3. Choose a built-in or custom style set.

It’s that easy!


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