How to Change Image Color in Microsoft Office

Change the appearance of images when they are already inserted in Word, PowerPoint or Excel

What there is to know

  • Open the document and navigate to the image whose color you are adjusting, then try out various predefined correction presets.
  • The presets you see vary by program and version, but most will have Saturation, color toneand Recolor presets to try.
  • Otherwise, select Color > Image color optionsthen adjust via dial or digital input to Saturation, color toneand Recolor.

This article explains how to customize the image color or recolor options in Microsoft Office, giving you greater control over saturation, tone, and transparency. Instructions cover Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) 2019, 2016, 2013, Microsoft 365 and Office for Mac.

Change Picture Color in Microsoft Office

When you want to correct or change the color of an image or apply a sepia or grayscale effect, follow these steps:

Open the Microsoft Office program as well as a document with inserted pictures.

If you haven’t inserted any images yet, go to Insert > artworkselect either Pictures or Pictures online.

Insert picture options in Word.

To change the color, you can use the predefined correction presets or use the image color options for fine adjustment. (Shown in step 7.)

The presets you see vary depending on the program and version you are working in, but should include Saturation, color toneand Recolor.

Saturation refers to the color depth applied to your image. Notice how these presets span a spectrum of color depths. If you see one that would work for your project, select it here, from values ​​between 0% and 400%.

Saturation settings in Word.

color tone refers to the warmth or coolness of the color of the image, and this preset also offers choices along a spectrum. You will notice that these values ​​have different temperature ratings, indicating how warm or cold the tone of the image is.

Color tone settings in Word.

Recolor refers to a wash of color placed over an image. This means that your image will be processed in black and white, but with other options for “white”. This means that the fill or background color, as well as certain tones of the line art itself, will take on this color. Presets usually include Sepia, Shades of grey, Washingand other options.

Recolor settings in Word.

Otherwise, select Color > Image color options.

Selecting picture color options in Word.

Adjust it Saturation using the dial or numeric input.

Saturation settings in Word.

Adjust it color tone using the dial or numeric input, remembering that color tone is adjusted in terms of temperature and refers to how warm or cool hues in the image appear.

Temperature settings highlighted in Word.

If you wish it, Recolor the entire image using the drop-down menu.

Highlighted recolor settings in Word.

Additional tips

  • If you want more Recolor options, try selecting Format > Color > More variants. This allows you to customize the color shade more precisely.
  • An interesting tool to use which can be found at Format > Color > Set transparent color, allows you to make a color of the selected image transparent. After selecting this tool, when you select a specific color in the image, all other pixels of that color will also become transparent.

Occasionally, we encountered a few images that simply did not respond to these tools. If you’re having a lot of trouble, try testing another image to see if that might be the problem. You may need to find another image format or use another image if the problem persists.


More information about How to Change Image Color in Microsoft Office

Switch up how pictures look when already inserted in Word, PowerPoint, or Excel

What to Know
Open the document and go to the image whose color you’re adjusting, and then try out various pre-made correction presets.
The presets you see will vary by program and version, but most will have Saturation, Color Tone, and Recolor presets to try out.
Alternatively, select Color > Picture Color Options, and then adjust via the dial or numerical input for Saturation, Color Tone, and Recolor.

This article explains how to customize image color or recolor options in Microsoft Office, giving you greater control over saturation, tone, and transparency. Instructions cover Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) 2019, 2016, 2013, Microsoft 365, and Office for Mac.

Changing Image Color in Microsoft Office

When you want to fix or change the color of a picture or apply a sepia or grayscale effect, follow these steps:

Open the Microsoft Office program as well as a document with images inserted.

If you do not yet have images inserted, go to Insert > Illustrations, select either Pictures or Online Pictures.

To change the color, you can use the pre-made correction presets or use Picture Color Options for fine-tuning. (Shown in step 7.)

The presets you see will vary depending on which program and version you are working in, but should include Saturation, Color Tone, and Recolor.

Saturation refers to the depth of color applied to your image. Notice how these presets range across a spectrum of color depths. If you see one that would work well for your project, select it here, among values between 0% and 400%.

Color Tone refers to the warmth or coolness of the image color, and this preset also offers choices along a spectrum. You will notice these values have different temperature ratings, denoting how warm or cool the image tone is. 

Recolor refers to a color wash placed over an image. This means your image will be treated as black and white, but with other options for the “white”. It means the fill or background color, as well as some tones in the line art itself, will take on that color. Presets typically include Sepia, Grayscale, Washout, and other options. 

Alternatively, select Color > Picture Color Options.

Adjust the Saturation using the dial or numerical input.

Adjust the Color Tone using the dial or numerical input, remembering that Color Tone is adjusted in terms of temperature and refers to how warm or cool the image hues appear.

If you wish, Recolor the entire image using the drop-down menu.

Additional Tips
If you want additional Recolor options, try selecting Format > Color > More Variations. This allows you to customize the color shade more precisely.
 An interesting tool to use that’s located at Format > Color > Set Transparent Color, allows you to make a color in the selected image transparent. After selecting this tool, when you select a specific color in the image, all other pixels with that color will become transparent as well.
From time to time, we have run into a couple of images that just would not respond to these tools. If you are running into a lot of trouble, try testing another image to see if this could be the problem. You may need to find another image format or use another image if the problem persists.

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