Redo tricks in Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook

Redo is the often-forgotten partner to Undo.  It’s mostly used to ‘undo an undo’ or reverse the last ‘Undo’ action but ‘Redo’ has other uses in Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook.

In most cases, you use the redo button to revert to a previous state. For example, if you used the undo button within your Word document but decided to redo what you’ve undone.

Redo = Repeat Previous Action

Redo is also a great way to quickly repeat the previous action in other locations within your document.

For instance, if you need to highlight, strikethrough and change the colour of certain areas of your text.

First, right-click on the word and select Font from the drop-down list.

Make your preferred changes to the Font Formatting, in our example we have changed the colour of the font, increased size to 16, and put a strikethrough effect and bold formatting style.

That’s multiple changes but because they are done in the Font dialog (not the ribbon), Word treats them as a single action.

Once you’ve selected OK – you should see the change within your text.

From here, straight away after making this change, highlight other areas of text that you would like to apply the formatting to.

Click Redo to apply the same formatting to the selected text.

Redo shortcuts

There are a few different ways to apply Redo.

First, you can press the F4 key at the top of the keyboard to apply your last action to the highlighted text. If F4 doesn’t seem to be working on your keyboard, you may need to press the Fn or F-Lock key then F4.

Alternatively, you can also press Ctrl + Y or… the Redo button is usually already in our Quick Toolbar.

If you can’t see it, just make sure it has been ticked under the Customize Quick Access Toolbar pull down list.

Now the font settings have been applied to the highlighted text. But you can repeat this as many times as you like, as long as you don’t make any other changes to the text in-between.

The feature can be used in different ways, instead of copying and pasting the word you’ve last typed, you could simply use the Redo button to paste the clipboard contents into different locations.

Beyond simple Undo in Microsoft Office
Why Word has a problem with an open dialog box
Get into the basics of Styles in Word
Inside the new look and defaults in Office 365

Don't miss out!
Join Office for Mere Mortals

Office for Mere Mortals is where thousands pick up useful tips and tricks for Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook.

Invalid email address
Give it a try. You can unsubscribe at any time.  We've never spammed or sold addresses since we started over twenty years ago.