How to Remove the Background Color on a Picture in Microsoft Word

Removing the background color from a picture in Microsoft Word is a simple process that involves using the ‘Remove Background’ tool. This tool is found under the ‘Format’ tab when an image is selected. The process involves selecting the areas you want to keep and discard, then refining the edges to ensure a clean cutout. Once complete, the image will have a transparent background, ready for use in your document.

After you complete the action, the image in your Word document will be free of its original background, leaving only the subject of the image. This allows for more flexibility in designing your document, as the image can now overlay text or other images without the distraction of a background.


Ever found yourself in a situation where you needed a perfect image for your Word document, but the background just wouldn’t do? Fear not, for Microsoft Word has a nifty feature that lets you remove unwanted backgrounds with ease. This feature is particularly useful for those who aren’t adept at complex image editing software. Whether you’re creating a flyer, a presentation, or just sprucing up a document, knowing how to remove the background color on a picture can be a game-changer.

It’s important because it allows for a more professional and polished look, free from the distractions that backgrounds can sometimes bring. For educators, marketers, students, or anyone looking to enhance the visual quality of their Word documents, this is a skill worth mastering. With a few simple clicks, you can isolate your subject and make it stand out, all without leaving the comfort of your Word processor. Let’s dive in and learn how this is done.

Step by Step Tutorial on Removing Background Color on a Picture in Microsoft Word

The following steps will guide you through the process of removing the background color from a picture in Microsoft Word.

Step 1: Insert the image into your Word document.

Insert the image you want to modify into your Word document by clicking the ‘Insert’ tab and then ‘Pictures.’

Once you have your image in the document, ensure it’s selected so that the ‘Format’ tab appears in the toolbar.

Step 2: Click on the ‘Remove Background’ option.

Under the ‘Format’ tab, you will find the ‘Remove Background’ tool on the far-left side. Click it to begin the background removal process.

The tool will try to guess which part of the image is the background and which is not. It will highlight the area it thinks you want to keep in purple.

Step 3: Adjust the selection.

If the automatic selection isn’t perfect, use the ‘Mark Areas to Keep’ and ‘Mark Areas to Remove’ tools to adjust what you want to be kept or discarded.

You can refine your selection by drawing lines within your image. Use small strokes for a more accurate selection.

Step 4: Keep Changes.

Once you’re satisfied with the selection, click ‘Keep Changes’ located on the toolbar above the image.

The background will be removed, and any areas not marked will be transparent.


Enhanced FlexibilityWith the background removed, your image can be overlaid on top of other elements without clashing.
Professional AppealImages without backgrounds blend seamlessly into your document, giving it a clean, professional look.
Saves TimeRather than using complex editing software, this quick method saves time while still providing great results.


Limited PrecisionThe ‘Remove Background’ tool may not be as precise as professional software, which could result in less than perfect edges.
Possible Learning CurveFor those not familiar with Word’s formatting tools, there may be a slight learning curve to use the ‘Remove Background’ feature effectively.
Dependent on Image QualityThe effectiveness of the background removal is highly dependent on the quality and clarity of the original image.

Additional Information

When working with the ‘Remove Background’ tool in Microsoft Word, it’s important to remember that not all images are created equal. For the best results, use high-contrast images where the subject is clearly defined against the background. If you’re dealing with a particularly complex image, don’t be afraid to zoom in and take your time marking the areas to keep and remove. After all, the devil is in the details.

Another tip is to use the tool in a well-lit environment as it can help you see the edges and fine details more clearly. Also, remember that you can undo any changes you’re not happy with by pressing ‘Ctrl + Z.’ Lastly, if you plan on using the image outside of Word, make sure to save it in a format that supports transparency, such as PNG.


  1. Insert the image into Word.
  2. Select ‘Remove Background’ under the ‘Format’ tab.
  3. Adjust the selection using ‘Mark Areas to Keep’ and ‘Mark Areas to Remove.’
  4. Click ‘Keep Changes’ to remove the background.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I remove the background from any image in Word?

Yes, you can remove the background from most images, but the success depends on the image’s contrast and complexity.

What happens if I make a mistake while removing the background?

You can simply undo the action by pressing ‘Ctrl + Z’ or re-adjust your selection using the tools provided.

Can I save the image with a transparent background outside of Word?

Yes, but ensure you save the image in a format that supports transparency, like PNG.

Is this feature available on all versions of Microsoft Word?

The ‘Remove Background’ feature is available in Word 2010 and later versions.

Will removing the background affect the quality of my image?

No, the quality of the subject in the image will remain unchanged, only the background is removed.


Mastering how to remove the background color on a picture in Microsoft Word can elevate the quality of your documents and presentations. It’s a straightforward process that, once learned, can save you time and enhance the overall aesthetic of your work. Remember, a picture speaks a thousand words, and by removing the background, you’re ensuring that the words it speaks are loud and clear.

For further exploration, consider experimenting with different images and backgrounds to hone your skills. Happy editing!

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