How To Put Borders On Excel

Productivity Software

Putting borders on Excel is a simple yet effective way to make your spreadsheet stand out and look more organized. As someone who has spent countless hours working with Excel, I’ve found that adding borders not only enhances the visual appeal of the data but also makes it easier to read and understand. In this article, I’ll guide you through the various methods of adding borders to cells and ranges in Excel, along with some personal tips and tricks.

Using the Ribbon to Add Borders

To add borders to cells using the Ribbon, simply select the cells or range that you want to apply the borders to. Then, navigate to the “Home” tab on the Excel Ribbon. Look for the “Font” group, and you’ll see the “Borders” button with a drop-down arrow. Click on the arrow to reveal the border options such as “All Borders,” “Outline,” or “Inside,” among others. Select the desired border style, and voila! Your borders are applied.

Customizing Border Styles

Excel offers a plethora of options to customize border styles. You can choose from a variety of line styles such as thin, medium, thick, and double lines. Additionally, you can customize the color of the borders by selecting from the color palette. I often like to use different border styles for different types of data to make them visually distinct and stand out. For example, I typically use a thick outline border for totals and a double-line bottom border for headers.

Using Keyboard Shortcuts for Efficiency

For the keyboard enthusiasts out there (like myself), using Excel’s keyboard shortcuts can significantly speed up the process of adding borders. Once you select the cells or range, you can use the shortcut Ctrl + Shift + & to apply a border. This can be a real time-saver, especially when working with large datasets and needing to quickly add or remove borders.

Conditional Formatting with Borders

When it comes to adding a bit of flair to your Excel spreadsheets, conditional formatting can be a game-changer. You can use conditional formatting to automatically apply borders based on certain conditions. For instance, you could set up a rule to add a thick border to cells that contain the highest or lowest values in a range. This not only enhances the visual appeal but can also draw attention to critical data points.


Adding borders to your Excel spreadsheets is a simple yet powerful way to improve their visual appeal and readability. Whether you prefer using the Ribbon, customizing border styles, leveraging keyboard shortcuts, or getting creative with conditional formatting, there are numerous ways to make your data stand out. By incorporating borders effectively, you can elevate the presentation of your data and make it more intuitive for yourself and others to interpret.