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When you’re giving a presentation, you want to keep your audience focused on one message at a time to prevent confusion. Dimming the text’s appearance that’s not being discussed can help you achieve this goal. Here’s how in PowerPoint.

First, open PowerPoint on your Windows PC or Mac and navigate to the slide that contains the text that you want to dim. In this example, we’ll use a slide with five bullet points.

Slide with text to be dimmed

Now, we need to give the text an entrance animation. Be sure to give each point that you want to cover its own animation—don’t group them.

RELATED: How to Make Animated Characters in PowerPoint

Highlight the text you want to animate by clicking and dragging the cursor over the text.

Next, select the “Animations” tab and choose your entrance animation from the “Animation” group.

Select the appear animation from the animations tab in PowerPoint


You’ll know the animation has been successfully applied if you see a number appear next to the text.

Number next to text showing animation

Repeat these steps until you have applied an animation to all of the bullet points.

All animations have been applied

Open the Animation Pane by selecting “Animation Pane” in the “Advanced Animation” group of the “Animations” tab.

Select animation pane

Select all of the animations by holding Ctrl on Windows or Command on Mac and clicking each animation. Click the arrow next to the right of the animations and select “Effect Options.”

The “Appear” window will emerge. In the “Effect” tab, you’ll notice “Don’t Dim” is selected by default next to the “After Animation” option. Change this by clicking the arrow next to the item and selecting a color that’s a little different (but still similar, as to not draw too much attention) from the slide’s background. You can also select “More Colors” if you don’t see your color in the commonly used group. In this example, we’ll use a light gray.

Select “OK” to save your changes and proceed.

dim after animation option

With the changes applied, check out the presentation to make sure it works. You should have something that looks a bit like this.

That’s all there is to it!

Marshall Gunnell
Marshall Gunnell is a writer with experience in the data storage industry. He worked at Synology, and most recently as CMO and technical staff writer at StorageReview. He's currently an API/Software Technical Writer at LINE Corporation in Tokyo, Japan, runs ITEnterpriser, a data-storage and cybersecurity-focused online media, and plays with development, with his RAID calculator being his first public project.
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