How to Remove the Background of a Picture in Word: A Step-by-Step Guide

Removing the background of a picture in Word is a straightforward process that can greatly enhance the visual appeal of your documents. By following a few simple steps, you can make your images stand out or blend seamlessly with your text. This guide will walk you through each step to achieve a clean background removal using Microsoft Word.

How to Remove the Background of a Picture in Word

This step-by-step tutorial details how to remove the background of an image in Microsoft Word, ensuring your document looks polished and professional.

Step 1: Insert the Picture

To start, insert the picture you want to edit into your Word document.
First, go to the "Insert" tab, click on "Pictures," and select the image from your device. This will place the image into your document, ready for editing.

Step 2: Select the Picture

Double-click the picture to select it.
When you double-click on the picture, the "Picture Format" tab will appear in the top toolbar, providing you with various editing options.

Step 3: Click on "Remove Background"

In the "Picture Format" tab, click on "Remove Background."
This will highlight the areas Word automatically detects as background in a magenta color. Sometimes, Word’s initial guess isn’t perfect, so you’ll need to adjust it.

Step 4: Adjust Selection

Use the "Mark Areas to Keep" and "Mark Areas to Remove" tools to refine the selection.
Click and drag over areas you want to keep or remove. Be patient; precise adjustments ensure a cleaner final result.

Step 5: Confirm Changes

Once satisfied with your selection, click "Keep Changes."
This will remove the highlighted background areas and leave you with a cleaner image.

After completing these steps, your picture will have a transparent background. This is useful for making your images blend well with various background colors or other content within your document.

Tips for Removing the Background of a Picture in Word

  • High-Contrast Images Work Best: Pictures with clear distinctions between the subject and background are easier to edit.
  • Zoom In for Precision: When marking areas to keep or remove, zoom in to make more precise selections.
  • Use Undo: Don’t be afraid to use the undo function (Ctrl + Z) if you make a mistake.
  • Save Your Document: Save your work frequently to avoid losing any progress.
  • Experiment with Different Images: Practice with various pictures to get a feel for the tool’s capabilities and limitations.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I re-edit the background after making changes?

Yes, you can reselect the picture, go to the "Picture Format" tab, and click "Remove Background" again to make further adjustments.

Does this work with all versions of Word?

The background removal tool is available in recent versions of Word, starting from Word 2010. Check your version if you can’t find the tool.

What if Word removes part of the subject?

You can use the "Mark Areas to Keep" tool to highlight any part of the subject that was mistakenly removed.

Are there limits to the size of the image I can use?

Large images can sometimes slow down Word. If you experience performance issues, try resizing the image before inserting it.

Will this work with all types of images?

While it works with most image formats, high-contrast images with distinct edges between the subject and background produce the best results.


  1. Insert the picture
  2. Select the picture
  3. Click on "Remove Background"
  4. Adjust selection
  5. Confirm changes


Removing the background of a picture in Word can significantly enhance the visual presentation of your documents. By following these straightforward steps—insert, select, remove background, adjust, and confirm—you can achieve a professional look with minimal effort. Whether you’re working on a school project, a business report, or a personal document, learning to utilize this tool can make your content more engaging and visually appealing.

Take your time to explore other editing features in Word, as mastering these tools can elevate the quality of your work. If you found this guide helpful, consider exploring more advanced features or even experimenting with other image-editing software for more complex projects. The key is practice and experimentation, so don’t be afraid to try new things. Happy editing!