Removing formatting in Excel can significantly reduce file size and boost spreadsheet performance.
You can use the classic method of removing cell formats from the Home ribbon.
Alternatively, you can take the unconventional route by clearing formats using the Format Painter and Paste Special
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Use Shortcuts to Remove Formatting in Excel
If you’re a fan of using shortcuts, there are a few ways to remove formatting in Excel. Refer to these shortcuts to remove formatting in Excel:
Use the Clear Tool to Remove Formatting in Excel
As the name suggests, the Clear tool in Excel is responsible for clearing almost anything in Excel. This includes hyperlinks, comments, and formats. You can use this tool to clear any formatting from the active cell.
Windows users of Excel have an additional feature of accessing this tool using ribbon shortcuts.
Unlike regular shortcuts, you don’t have to hold down on each key when using ribbon shortcuts. Instead, you can press one key, let go, then press on the next key.
If you’re on Windows, try using the following shortcut to clear formatting from the selected cell:
Alt, H, E, F
You can locate and use the tool from the Home ribbon using these steps:
- Select the cell/range with the formatting. If you wish to clear formatting from the entire sheet, use Ctrl + A.
- From the Editing section of the Home tab, select Clear.
- Choose Clear Formats.
Remove Conditional Formatting Rules in Excel
If you’ve applied conditional formatting on your cell, you can remove formatting by deleting the formatting rule that you’ve applied. Otherwise, the above-mentioned method will also work when removing conditional formatting in Excel.
Follow these steps to remove conditional formatting in Excel:
- Select the cell or range with conditional formatting.
- From the Home ribbon, click on Conditional Formatting from the Styles section.
- Head to Clear Rules.
- If you wish to clear rules from the selected range, choose Clear Rules from Selected Cells.
- To clear from entire sheet, choose Clear Rules from Entire Sheet.
Use Format Painter
You can also use the format painter in Excel to remove all formatting from your Excel cell. You can use the format painter to paste the format of an empty to the cell with your formatted cell.
- Open your worksheet.
- Select an empty cell from the Excel grid.
- From the Home tab, select Format Painter from the Clipboard section.
- Select the formatted cell or range.
Paste Formats from a Blank Cell
Excel has multiple paste options, including the feature to only paste formats. You can copy an empty cell with no formatting and, use the paste formats option to remove all formatting
Additionally, if you were looking to remove formatting to copy a different format, you can use this feature instead.
- Copy an empty cell (Ctrl + C)
- Select then right-click the target cell/range.
- On your keyboard, press R.
Use Paste Special
If you’re on Excel 365, you can also use paste special in the grid to remove formatting.
- Select your content from the grid, then copy it (Ctrl + C).
- Right-click on the grid, then choose Paste Special.
- Under Paste, select the box next to Formats.
- Click OK.
Remove Formatting while Pasting Values
When you copy-paste content directly from the web to your Excel grid, your text may still have the formatting from the website. In cases such as this, you can use Paste Options to ensure that the format of the pasted content matches your current Excel format.
However, you must be sure that your workbook has no format or else, this method will format your worksheet currently has.
- Copy your desired content from the web.
- Open your workbook and right-click on the Excel grid.
- Under the Paste Options, select Match Destination Formatting or press M.