How to Hide Duplicates in Excel: A Step-by-Step Guide

Are you tired of scrolling through your Excel spreadsheet only to see duplicate entries cluttering up your data? Fear not, as there’s a simple way to hide those pesky duplicates and make your worksheet look clean and organized. In this article, I’ll walk you through the steps to quickly and easily hide duplicates in Excel, so let’s dive in!

Step by Step Tutorial on How to Hide Duplicates in Excel

First things first, let’s talk about what we’re going to achieve here. By following these steps, you’ll be able to identify and hide duplicate values in your Excel worksheet, making it much easier to analyze your data.

Step 1: Select Your Data Range

Click and drag to highlight the cells that you want to check for duplicates.
Selecting the correct data range is crucial because it determines which cells Excel will scan for duplicates. Make sure you include all the relevant cells but avoid selecting any headers or irrelevant data.

Step 2: Open Conditional Formatting

Go to the ‘Home’ tab, click on ‘Conditional Formatting’, and then select ‘Highlight Cells Rules’.
Conditional Formatting is a powerful tool in Excel that allows you to format cells based on specific criteria, such as whether they contain duplicate values.

Step 3: Choose ‘Duplicate Values’

In the ‘Highlight Cells Rules’ menu, click on ‘Duplicate Values’.
This will open a dialog box where you can specify how you want the duplicates to be formatted.

Step 4: Set the Format for Duplicates

Choose a format that will make the duplicates easy to identify, such as a different font color.
You can choose from a variety of formats, including font color, cell fill color, and bold or italic text. This step is all about making those duplicates stand out.

Step 5: Hide the Duplicates

Right-click on one of the formatted duplicate cells, select ‘Hide’, and Excel will hide the row containing the duplicate.
Hiding the duplicates doesn’t delete them; it simply makes them invisible in the worksheet. If you need to access the hidden data later on, you can easily unhide the rows.

After completing these steps, your Excel worksheet will look much cleaner, with all the duplicates neatly hidden away. This will make it easier to focus on the unique data and perform any necessary analysis.

Tips for Hiding Duplicates in Excel

  • Always make sure to save a copy of your original data before making any changes, just in case you need to revert back.
  • Use Conditional Formatting to highlight duplicates in different colors if you have multiple types of duplicates.
  • If you’re working with a large data set, consider using filters to hide duplicates instead of hiding rows, as this can be more efficient.
  • Remember that hiding duplicates does not remove them from your data. If you need to delete duplicates, you’ll need to use a different process.
  • Use the ‘Find & Select’ feature in Excel to quickly locate hidden rows if you need to unhide them later.

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the difference between hiding and removing duplicates in Excel?

Hiding duplicates merely conceals them from view, while removing duplicates deletes the extra entries from your dataset.

Can I hide duplicates across multiple columns?

Yes, you can apply Conditional Formatting to multiple columns to identify and hide duplicates throughout your worksheet.

Will hiding duplicates affect my formulas or calculations?

No, hiding duplicates won’t impact any formulas or calculations in your spreadsheet, as the data is still present, just not visible.

How can I unhide the rows with hidden duplicates?

To unhide rows, simply select the rows above and below the hidden ones, right-click, and choose ‘Unhide’.

Is there a way to prevent duplicates from being entered in the first place?

Yes, you can use data validation rules in Excel to restrict users from entering duplicate values in a range of cells.


  1. Select the data range with potential duplicates.
  2. Open Conditional Formatting from the Home tab.
  3. Choose the ‘Duplicate Values’ option.
  4. Set a distinct format for duplicates.
  5. Hide the rows with duplicates by right-clicking and selecting ‘Hide’.


There you have it, a simple yet effective method to hide duplicates in Excel. With this knowledge, you can now maintain a clean and organized dataset, ensuring that you’re only working with unique values. Remember, hiding duplicates is just one of the many tools Excel offers to manage your data effectively. As you get more comfortable with Excel’s features, you’ll find that it’s an incredibly versatile program that can make data analysis a breeze. So, go ahead and give these steps a try the next time you’re dealing with duplicate data. Happy Excel-ing!

Join Our Free Newsletter

Featured guides and deals

You may opt out at any time. Read our Privacy Policy