How to Underline in Word: A Step-by-Step Guide for Easy Formatting

How to Underline in Word

Underlining text in Microsoft Word is a straightforward task that enhances the readability and emphasis of your content. Here’s a quick breakdown: First, select the text you want to underline. Then, navigate to the ‘Home’ tab on the ribbon. Finally, click the underline button (it looks like a "U" with a line beneath it). Alternatively, you can use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+U. These steps will instantly add an underline to your selected text.

How to Underline in Word

By following these steps, you will be able to easily underline any text in your Word document. Let’s dive into the details.

Step 1: Open Your Document

Open the document in Microsoft Word where you want to underline text.

Having the document open is essential because you need to see the text to select it. Navigate to the specific area where you want to add the underline.

Step 2: Select the Text

Select the portion of text you want to underline.

Click and drag your mouse over the text to highlight it. Make sure you have the exact text selected that you want to apply the underline to.

Step 3: Go to the ‘Home’ Tab

Navigate to the ‘Home’ tab on the ribbon at the top of the screen.

The ‘Home’ tab contains the majority of text formatting options, including the underline button, so it’s a one-stop shop for your needs.

Step 4: Click the Underline Button

Click the underline button, which looks like a "U" with a line beneath it.

Once clicked, this button will instantly apply an underline to the selected text, making it stand out.

Step 5: Use the Keyboard Shortcut (Optional)

Alternatively, press Ctrl+U on your keyboard.

This keyboard shortcut is a quick alternative that achieves the same result without having to navigate through the ribbon.

After completing these steps, the selected text will be underlined. This simple formatting change can make a big difference in how your document looks and feels.

Tips for Underlining in Word

  • If you want to remove the underline, simply select the underlined text and click the underline button again, or use the Ctrl+U shortcut.
  • You can combine underlining with other formatting options like bold or italics by selecting the text and clicking the respective buttons.
  • For more underline styles, click the small arrow next to the underline button to choose from different line types and colors.
  • Use underlining sparingly. Too much underlined text can make a document harder to read.
  • If you’re underlining hyperlinks, Word automatically formats them in blue and underlined.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if the underline button is grayed out?

Ensure that you have selected some text to underline. The underline option will be unavailable if no text is selected.

Can I underline only part of a word?

Yes, simply select the specific characters within the word that you want to underline.

How do I underline spaces in my text?

Use the underline tool while typing. This way, spaces between underlined words will also be underlined.

Can I change the color of the underline?

Yes, select the text, click the arrow next to the underline button, and choose "Underline Color" to pick your desired color.

How can I underline text on a Mac?

On a Mac, the process is similar. Select the text, then press Command+U or use the underline button in the ‘Home’ tab.


  1. Open Your Document
  2. Select the Text
  3. Go to the ‘Home’ Tab
  4. Click the Underline Button
  5. Use the Keyboard Shortcut (Optional)


Underlining text in Word is incredibly simple and can add a layer of emphasis to your documents that other formatting options might not provide. Whether you’re drafting a report, creating a flyer, or preparing a presentation, knowing how to underline in Word is a skill that can enhance your work’s clarity and attractiveness.

Remember to use underlining judiciously. Overuse can lead to cluttered and hard-to-read documents. Play around with different underline styles and colors to suit your needs, and take advantage of Word’s other formatting tools to create polished, professional documents.

If you’re new to Word or just looking to brush up on your skills, Microsoft’s support pages and numerous tutorial videos can offer more in-depth guidance. Keep experimenting, and you’ll find the best ways to make your text stand out. Happy formatting!