How to Alternate White and Gray Cells in Excel

By Kathryn Hatashita-Lee

Microsoft Excel enables you to change your worksheet to a table style to improve readability for you and your clients. For example, a table's row colors may help your viewers distinguish each row or field of data, especially useful for working with large worksheets. Excel’s table styles include alternate shading or banding in various intensities. Selecting a gray and white combination helps separate each row without the distraction of bright colors.

Click and drag to select the cells that you want to format.

Click the “Home” tab on the command ribbon, and then click the “Format as Table” button in the Styles group to display a gallery of styles.

Mouse over the thumbnails of samples to preview the color changes to your worksheet.

Click a gray and white table style. For example, the first column of samples includes gray and white in the Light, Medium and Dark sections. Your worksheet data displays with alternating bands.

Save this worksheet.


To convert the table to a range of data and still keep the color bands, right-click a cell, mouse over “Table” and click “Convert to Range.”


Information in this article applies to Microsoft Excel 2010. It may vary slightly or significantly with other versions or products.