Remove the Background of a Picture with Microsoft Word

Strange, but I just learned about the feature of removing the background of a picture directly, in Microsoft Office and found it worth sharing here with the readers of TWC. This feature helps remove the background in just a few clicks and can help highlight the subject of the picture, by removing the background. You can remove the background of any picture using Word, PowerPoint or even Excel.remove background from picture

Remove the background from an image

Paste the picture in Microsoft Word, PowerPoint or Excel. I am using Microsoft Word here.

  • Go to the ‘Format Painter’ and then click the picture. This will open the ‘Format’ tab in your Word.
  • Click on ‘Remove Background’ and you will get the marquee lines on the picture. Use the handles to select the area you want to keep and exclude the areas you want to remove. The deselected areas will turn purple.
  • Check out this picture showing the marquee line handles and background removal lines.reomove background from picture 1
  • Click on ‘Keep the changes’, once you are done with the selection. If you have done it wrong, you can always reset the picture and do it once again. You can also discard all the changes by clicking ‘Discard all changes’.remove background from picture 2

Furthermore, you can also add different color effects and reflections in your edited picture. You can add these effects on the original pictures, as well as on the picture with the removed background.remove background from picture

  • Corrections: This feature includes almost every effect commonly used in the photo editor apps like adding shadows, glows, brightness, contrast, and sharpness.
  • Color: This feature allows you to add different color tone, color saturation and recolor option to your picture.
  • Artistic effects: This tab allows you to add different artistic effects to your picture.

Before you remove the background from the picture, it is very important to compress the picture, to retain the details in the original picture.

TIP: lets you remove background from Images & Photos online free.

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Posted by on , in Category Office with Tags
Shiwangi is a qualified writer and a blogger, who loves to dabble with and write about computers. While focusing on and writing on technology topics, her varied skills and experience enables her to write on any topics which may interest her. Creating a System Restore Point first before installing a new software, and being careful about any third-party offers while installing freeware is recommended.


  1. Wow. That is amazing. I had no idea Microsoft Word had that capability. Very cool. I tried it out on a few pictures, and it’s pretty spot on when it comes to knowing what’s foreground and background.

    Thanks for the post! I’ll be using that feature quite a bit!

  2. Paultx

    Which Office versions can do that?

  3. I can verify it works fine with Office 2010 with no issues. Works a lot better than I expected it to. Obviously not as good as someone that is an expert at Photoshop (better than a novice like me can do with Photoshop, though!), but it really does get the job done for an Word document.

  4. Nick

    It’s not an exact science… I used your picture above and tried to closely match your same selection. I either lost the legs of both of the skaters, or lost the left leg of the girl. I had to then use the other two options: Mark Areas to Remove/Keep and that got me a whole lot closer. Very handy tip never the less!

  5. Netpilot

    Specifically what do you mean by: “Before you remove the background from the picture it is very important to compress the picture so as to retain the details in the original picture.”?
    Does that help the selection algorithm or are you just saying not to manipulate the original picture?

  6. thuya199

    I can’t find remove background in word 2013. help

  7. thuya199

    I am ok with the remove background.Tks

  8. shiwangi peswani

    Yeah Paultx Office 2010 has this feature of removing the background and thnq Dustin 🙂

  9. shiwangi peswani

    Lol I agree Dustin it works great and certainly helpful for someone not good at Photoshop 🙂

  10. shiwangi peswani

    Hey Nick even I faced such issues initially but after resting the picture once it worked fine for me..well, the Mark Areas to Remove/ Keep options also help.

  11. Gary N

    “Qualified writer,”? This article is filled with errors. Please learn English.

  12. stan

    I have word 2013, I am using a surface pro. I have previously used this function (in other word versions), with this version, I can only “remove background” and “keep changes” the options of mark areas to keep or remove does not appear at all….. not even shadowed out like it might be there but with no access,,, it’s not there at all, which makes this useless to me. any suggestions on how to find it or access it?

  13. Johny

    I would have been very impressed with this writers attempt to provide such an interesting tip if she had bothered to mention WHICH VERSION OF WORD. After being frustrated as to why I could not get it to work, I reset my browser to allow comments only to find the answer listed by readers. A simple mention from the writer would have saved me the wasted time.

  14. MikeMurdock

    This “article” looks like an email sent between English as a Second
    Language classmates. “If you have done it wrongly” made me depressed for
    the future of blogs (translation: I sadly thinking abouts info-future)

    Very informative, but so poorly written I cringed; the writers description is riddled with errors as well. Please proofread.

  15. Aimee

    She has learned your mother tongue. Rather than criticizing her language, I suggest you losers take time to learn her mother tongue!

  16. Aimee

    Thanks for the useful tip. But would like to know which all versions of Office this tip works on.

  17. shiwangi peswani

    Hey Aimee I am using Word 2010 and it works fine for me. The comments below somehow tell that the feature is not supported by other versions of MS Word.

  18. shiwangi peswani

    Oh ! Johny I sincerely apologize for my mistake of not mentioning the version here..I should have mentioned in the post that I am using Word 2010. Sorry for the inconvenience caused.

  19. shiwangi peswani

    Hey Stan this picture tools works only with Excel 2010, PowerPoint 2010 and Word 2010.

  20. ann

    I really like this feature but then when I save the picture it becomes a .docx and then I can’t open it in any other program such as Paint. What do I do so that I can further edit it in Paint, Picasa, etc. ?

  21. synapse

    If you do not have Office, you can remove background using PhotoScissors

  22. Its pretty easy to remove background from any image in Microsoft word. But I am thinking about the quality of the work. Is it really good technique to adopt for all kinds of images?

  23. Dee

    My Word doesn’t have a “Remove Background” in the “Adjust” area. I tried to “add” it in the customize bar, but it still doesn’t show up in the “Adjust” area. Help please.

  24. Eliza

    You can select the picture
    Go to format picture
    Then recolor
    Click set transparent color
    Then click the parts of the picture you don’t want.

  25. djsinging

    I agree with Mike (Y)

    English for most Indians is a first language and we have had the privilege to educate ourselves in convent schools from nursery.

    Schools that do not have English as primary medium of education start with ABC from 5th grade or so and hence the same reflects in correspondence and posts as above…

    I am comfortable taking dictation in English before the local dialects or national language. It is inappropriate to make and excuse silly mistakes like the ones highlighted.

    Neither is it acceptable for the protectors of culture and spirit of the country to object western education because where we are today is because of our commitments to accept and learn cultures worldwide and hence you find Indians well settled and accepted internationally.

    PS: “send me your blogs to proofread (free) ”


  26. djsinging

    Look at the status ‘Message’

    “I am a party girl and I don’t need a reason to party, I do it be…” ??? what the hell does that mean???

  27. Thanks for Sharing. It will help in clipping path

  28. laura

    what about in windows 8?

  29. laura

    u cant do that on windows 8! Is there another way?

  30. soxx

    Has this featured been removed from Office 2013? I used it a lot but can’t find this and a lot of the other picture editing tools on my new pc.

  31. SomeGuy

    You are correct – you can’t do this in Windows, as Windows is not a word processor. Suggest you use Word instead.

  32. SomeGuy

    Scroll up one screen.

  33. So till now I have used Photoshop only to remove the background from any image, and haven’t tried Microsoft word yet for this. After seeing your post now I am kind of interested to try this process now, thank you for the tutorial.

  34. Hey !!! I don’t know about that we can do background remove by MSW. Previews day I’m using Photoshop.

  35. I really enjoyed this awesome photo editing technique. thanks for sharing this good idea

  36. I never knew Microsoft words can do this. I guess most of the people are unaware about this feature of Microsoft word. This article is really good. Thanks a lot for this wonderful article with broad description and tutorial for MS Word. I really found it helpful. Definitely going to use it next time. Really appreciate your work. Thanks again.

  37. Michael Peterson

    Yes, it’s really so amazing. I am so happy to find your blog. Many many thanks for sharing with us.

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