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Just because you have a spreadsheet full of data doesn’t mean you want to see it all at once. You can hide columns in Microsoft Excel that you don’t need at the moment. Then simply unhide them when you’re ready.

Hide Columns in Microsoft Excel

Hiding columns in Excel is super easy. And, you can select the columns you want to hide in a few different ways.

  • To select a single column, click the column header.
  • To select multiple adjacent columns, drag through them. Or you can click the first column header, hold Shift, and click the last column header in the range.
  • To select multiple non-adjacent columns, click the first column header, hold Ctrl, and click the remaining column headers.

Once you choose the columns you want to hide, they’ll be highlighted. Right-click one of them and pick “Hide” in the shortcut menu.

After you hide columns in Excel, you’ll see a thick white line indicator between the remaining column headers. If you’re using a Mac, this indicator may appear as a bold green line. This is a good thing to keep in mind if you’re looking for data you don’t see.

Hidden columns on Windows and Mac

If you’d like to keep certain columns on screen while you scroll through your spreadsheet, learn how to freeze columns and rows in Excel.

RELATED: How to Freeze and Unfreeze Rows and Columns in Excel

Unhide Columns in Microsoft Excel

When you’re ready to view those hidden columns, unhiding them is just as simple as hiding them. Select the columns on each side of the hidden column(s). You can do this easily by dragging through them. Then, right-click and pick “Unhide” in the shortcut menu.

Another way to unhide columns is by double-clicking the line indicator for the hidden columns.

White line indicator for hidden columns

Keep in mind that you can hide rows in Excel the same way as hiding columns. And if you have an older version of the application, the process is the same, but the appearance differs. Take a look at the screenshots in our how-to for hiding and unhiding rows and columns in Excel 2013.

Profile Photo for Sandy Writtenhouse Sandy Writtenhouse
With her B.S. in Information Technology, Sandy worked for many years in the IT industry as a Project Manager, Department Manager, and PMO Lead. She learned how technology can enrich both professional and personal lives by using the right tools. And, she has shared those suggestions and how-tos on many websites over time. With thousands of articles under her belt, Sandy strives to help others use technology to their advantage.
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