How to Hide & Unhide Cells in Excel

by Stephanie Ellen
Comstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images

Microsoft Excel is powerful spreadsheet software that allows you to use up to 16,000 columns of data. With the ability to have vast amounts of data in one spreadsheet, there may be times when you just don't need to display all the data at once. For example, you may want to print just a small portion of the worksheet; hiding the cells you don't want to print will enable you to print only the cells that are unhidden. Hide and unhide cells in Excel through the Format Cells dialog box.

Hide Cells

Step 1

Select the cells you want to hide.

Step 2

Click the "Format" tab and then click "Format Cells."

Step 3

Click the "Number" tab.

Step 4

Click "Custom" from the Category List.

Type three semicolons ";;;" into the "Type" text box and then click "OK." The cell data will be hidden.

Unhide Cells

Step 1

Reopen the Format Cells dialog box.

Step 2

Delete the semicolons in the Type box.

Click "OK."


  • To hide entire rows, columns or sheets, click the "Format" button on the Home tab and then click "Hide and Unhide." Click the option you would like: "Hide Rows," "Hide Columns" or "Hide sheet."


Photo Credits

  • Comstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images

About the Author

Stephanie Ellen teaches mathematics and statistics at the university and college level. She coauthored a statistics textbook published by Houghton-Mifflin. She has been writing professionally since 2008. Ellen holds a Bachelor of Science in health science from State University New York, a master's degree in math education from Jacksonville University and a Master of Arts in creative writing from National University.

More Articles