How to Remove Background from Picture in Microsoft Word

By Blake Published June 16, 2023

How to Remove Background from Picture in Microsoft Word
How to Remove Background from Picture in Microsoft Word

Microsoft Word, widely recognized as the premier text editing software, houses an impressive variety of features. These not only include an extensive set of text formatting tools but also rich image editing options. One such feature allows users to remove background from pictures directly within Word, providing a level of convenience that eliminates the need for additional graphic editing software.

Delving Into Word's Image Capabilities

To understand the importance of being able to remove a picture's background within Word, it's essential to grasp the role of images within a document. Here's why you might need to do this:

• Clarity: Removing an image's background can reduce distractions and help focus on the object or person in the image.
• Aesthetics: Pictures with removed backgrounds blend more smoothly with the text and overall design of the document.
• Versatility: Without a background, an image becomes more versatile and can be used in various contexts within the document.

In this comprehensive guide, you'll learn how to remove background from a picture in Word.

Removing Background from Picture in Word

Here are the step-by-step instructions:

1. Insert the Picture

Firstly, open your Word document and place your cursor where you want the image to appear. Go to the 'Insert' tab and click on the 'Pictures' button. Locate your image in your files and insert it into your document.

2. Select the Picture

After inserting the image, click on it to select it. This action activates the 'Picture Tools' and shows the 'Format' tab in the ribbon.

3. Select Remove Background

Under the 'Format' tab, locate and click the 'Remove Background' button. Word will then try to guess what part of your picture is the foreground (the part you want to keep) and select it in color, while tinting the background area in magenta to mark it for removal.

4. Adjust the Selection

If Word doesn't perfectly select the part of the image you want to keep, don't worry! You can manually adjust it by dragging the bounding box's handles.

5. Mark Areas to Keep or Remove

For a more detailed adjustment, use the 'Mark Areas to Keep' and 'Mark Areas to Remove' tools. These allow you to draw lines on areas of the image that Word may have overlooked or incorrectly marked.

6. Finalize the Removal

Once you're satisfied with the selection, click 'Keep Changes' to remove the background. It's as simple as that! With a few clicks, you can remove the background from any picture in Word.

How to Remove Background from Picture on Other Processors

  • How to Remove Background from Picture in Google Docs: Google Docs doesn't natively support the removal of background from images directly within a document. Users typically need to edit the image using an external photo editing tool to remove the background before uploading the edited image to their Google Docs document. This process emphasizes the use of third-party applications or web services designed for image editing.
  • How to Remove the Background of a Picture in Pages: Apple's Pages document processor provides a more integrated solution for Mac and iOS users. While not as straightforward as some dedicated image editing tools, Pages offers a workaround by adjusting image settings and using shapes to mask the background of images. Users often need to get creative with the available tools to achieve the desired effect.
  • How to Remove the Background of a Picture in PowerPoint: PowerPoint is known for its robust presentation tools, including advanced image editing features. Among these features is the ability to remove the background of a picture directly within a PowerPoint slide. This functionality allows users to select and delete the background of an image, making it easier to integrate images seamlessly into presentations without the need for external editing software.


Knowing how to remove a background from a picture in Word can drastically improve the professional appearance and aesthetic versatility of your documents. The feature to remove background in documents and presentations is not just a testament to Word's versatility but also to its role as a one-stop solution for comprehensive document creation and refinement.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I remove the background of any picture in Word?

Word does a good job of removing backgrounds from most pictures, but it might struggle with complex images or those where the foreground and background colors are very similar. For such cases, dedicated graphic editing software might be a better option.

Why can't I find the 'Remove Background' button in Word?

The 'Remove Background' feature is available in Microsoft Word 2010 and later versions. If you're using an older version of Word, consider updating to access this feature.

Can I undo the background removal if I'm not satisfied with the results?

Absolutely. You can either press 'Ctrl + Z' to undo the action immediately or use the 'Discard All Changes' button in the 'Background Removal' tab if you haven't finalized the changes.

Can I save the picture with the background removed to use in other documents?

Once the background is removed in Word, the change is only applicable in the current document. To use the picture with the background removed in other documents, consider using graphic editing software.

Can I remove backgrounds from multiple images at once in Word?

No, Word doesn't support batch background removal. You'll have to manually remove the background from each picture.