How to Hide Cells in Excel: A Step-by-Step Guide

Excel is a powerful tool, but sometimes you don't want everyone to see everything. Maybe you have sensitive data, maybe you just want to present an easier-to-read version of your worksheet. Whatever the reason, hiding cells in Excel is an essential skill for anyone who wants more control over their spreadsheet. In this step-by-step guide, I'll show you how it's done.

Step 1: Select the Cells You Want to Hide

The first step is to select the cells you want to hide. You can do this by clicking and dragging your mouse over the cells, or by pressing Ctrl and clicking on each cell individually. Once you've selected the cells, right-click and select "Format Cells" from the drop-down menu.

Step 2: Choose the "Hidden" Option

Under the "Format Cells" menu, select the "Protection" tab. You should see a checkbox that says "Hidden". Check this box and click "OK".

Step 3: Hide Your Cells

Now that you've set your cells to be hidden, you need to actually hide them. You can do this in a couple of ways:

  • Right-Click and Select "Hide": Once you've selected your cells, right-click and select "Hide" from the drop-down menu.
  • Use the Ribbon: If you prefer to use Excel's ribbon, click on the "Home" tab at the top of the screen, then click "Format" and choose "Hide & Unhide" from that drop-down menu. Select "Hide Rows" or "Hide Columns" depending on which you need to hide.

Voila! Your cells are now hidden from view.

Step 4: Unhide Your Cells

If you need to unhide your cells, it's as easy as selecting the cells before right-clicking and selecting "Unhide". Alternatively, you can use the ribbon again by clicking on the "Home" tab, then clicking "Format" and choosing "Hide & Unhide" from the drop-down menu. Then select "Unhide Columns" or "Unhide Rows" to reveal your hidden cells.

Step 5: Protect Your Worksheet

If you want to prevent others from unhiding your hidden cells, you can protect your worksheet by going to the "Review" tab, clicking "Protect Sheet", and setting a password. This way, only those who know the password can modify your worksheet.


Now that you know how to hide cells in Excel, you have more control over your spreadsheets. Whether you're working with sensitive data or just want a cleaner view, this skill is one you're sure to use again and again.

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