Crop a picture in Office

Crop a picture to trim away outer edges that are unnecessary.

Important: Cropped parts of the picture are not removed from the file, and can potentially be seen by others; including search engines if the cropped image is posted online. If there is sensitive information in the area you're cropping out make sure you delete the cropped areas (see below) then save the file. 

In addition to basic margin-cropping, you can also crop pictures to specific shapes and aspect ratios, or crop picture fills inside a shape (in Office for Mac and in Office 2010 and later).

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Office can help with you with basic image editing as illustrated in the video above, but for more advanced tasks, you may need a dedicated image-editing app. Digital Trends has recommendations for free photo-editing software.

Crop the margins of a picture

  1. Use Insert > Picture to add the image to an Office file (such as a Word document, PowerPoint presentation, or Excel workbook).

  2. Right-click the picture. A pop-up menu appears with two buttons either immediately above or below the menu. Crop is one of the buttons.

    The Crop button appears above or below the pop-up menu
  3. Select the Crop  The Crop button button.

    Black crop handles appear on the edges and corners of the picture.

    Crop handles appear on the sides and corners of the picture
  4. Crop the image by doing one of the following:

    Description

    Action

    Crop one side

    Drag inward on the side cropping handle

    Crop two adjacent sides at the same time

    Drag inward on the corner cropping handle

    Crop equally on two parallel sides at once

    Press and hold Ctrl while dragging inward on the side cropping handle

    You can also outcrop, or add a margin around a picture, by dragging the cropping handles outward rather than inward.

  5. (Optional) To reposition the crop area, either change the crop area by dragging the edges or corners of the crop rectangle, or move the picture.

  6. When you're finished, press Esc or click anywhere outside the picture within the document.

Note: Cropping tools are not available for shapes, but in Office 2010 and later, you can resize a shape and use the Edit Points tool to achieve an effect similar to cropping or to customize the shape. See Use edit points to edit or crop the shape for more information.

Crop to a shape, such as a circle

See Crop a picture to fit in a shape.

Other kinds of cropping

Select a heading below to open it and see the detailed instructions.

Cropping a picture to a common photo size or aspect ratio lets it easily fit into a standard picture frame. You can also use this tool to preview how a picture will fit into a specific aspect ratio before cropping.

  1. Use Insert > Picture to add the image to an Office file (such as a Word document, PowerPoint presentation, or an Excel workbook).

  2. Click the picture.

  3. Click Picture Tools > Format, and in the Size group, click the arrow under Crop.

    Crop button found on the Picture Tools Format tab

  4. From the menu that appears, select Aspect Ratio, then click the ratio that you want.

    A crop rectangle appears, showing you how the picture will appear when cropped to the selected aspect ratio.

  5. If desired, adjust the crop area using the cropping handles as described under Crop a picture.

  6. When you're finished, press Esc or click anywhere outside the picture within the document.

Both the Paint (in several versions of Windows) and Paint 3D (in Windows 10) apps help you crop a picture. Open your picture in the app, and you'll see a Crop button on the toolbar. See this quick video overview about some features in the Paint 3D app.

After you crop a picture, the cropped areas remain part of the file, hidden from view. You can reduce file size by removing the cropped areas from the picture file. This also helps prevent other people from viewing the parts of the picture that you have removed.

Important: If you delete cropped areas and later change your mind, you can click the Undo  Button Image button to restore them. Deletions can be undone until the file is saved.

  1. Select the picture or pictures from which you want to delete cropped areas.

  2. Click Picture Tools > Format, and in the Adjust group, click Compress Pictures. A dialog box appears showing compression options.

    Compress Pictures button on the Picture Tools Format tab

    If you don't see the Picture Tools and Format tabs, make sure that you've selected a picture. You might have to double-click the picture to select it and open the Format tab. Also, if your screen size is reduced, you might only see the Compress Pictures icon.

    Compress Pictures icon with no label

  3. Under Compression Options, be sure that the Delete cropped areas of pictures check box is selected.

    Compress Pictures dialog box

    To remove croppings for the selected picture or pictures only and not all pictures in the file, select the Apply only to this picture check box.

    Select a Resolution option, if desired.

  4. Click OK.

Tip: For more information about reducing the file size of pictures and compressing pictures, see Reduce the file size of a picture.

See Also

Insert pictures

Add a drawing to a Word document

Reduce the file size of a picture

Use Word Layout Options to move pictures

Wrap text around pictures in Word

Crop the margins of a picture

  1. Use Insert > Pictures to add the image to an Office file (such as a Word document, PowerPoint presentation, or Excel workbook).

  2. Click the picture, then click the Picture Format tab on the toolbar ribbon.

    The Crop option on the Picture Format tab in Word 2019.

  3. On the Picture Format tab, select Crop.

    Black crop handles appear on the edges and corners of the picture.

    Crop handles appear on the sides and corners of the picture
  4. Crop the image by dragging any crop handle inward. If you drag one of the corner handles, it crops two adjacent sides at the same time.

  5. Click away from the picture to see the cropped image.

Note: After you crop a picture, the cropped parts are hidden but remain as part of the picture file. To permanently remove the cropped portion and reduce your picture size, see the section further down this page named Delete cropped areas of a picture.

Crop to a specific shape

See Crop a picture to fit in a shape.

Delete cropped areas of a picture

Even after you crop parts of a picture, the cropped parts remain as part of the picture file. You can reduce the file size by removing the croppings from the picture file. This also helps prevent other people from viewing the parts of the picture that you have removed.

Important: Deleting cropped areas of a picture can't be undone. Therefore, you should only do this after you are sure that you have made all the crops and changes that you want.

  1. Click the picture or pictures from which you want to delete cropped areas.

  2. On the Picture Format tab, click Compress Pictures  Compress Pictures button .

    (If you don't see the Picture Format tab, make sure that you've selected a picture.)

  3. Select the Delete cropped areas of pictures check box.

    To remove croppings for the selected picture or pictures only and not all of the pictures in the file, select Selected pictures only.

See Also

Insert pictures in Office for Mac

Move, rotate, or group a picture, text box, or other object in Office for Mac

Change the size of a picture, shape, text box, or WordArt

Control text wrapping around objects in Word for Mac

In Word for the web and PowerPoint for the web you can do basic picture cropping—trimming away unwanted margins of a picture. Only the desktop apps can delete the cropped areas from the image, however.

Crop a picture

  1. Right-click the picture, and then select Crop from the toolbar floating above the picture.

    Right-click a picture, the select Crop on the toolbar that appears over the picture.

    The Crop option in Word

    Right-click a picture, the select Crop on the toolbar that appears over the picture.

    The Crop option in PowerPoint

  2. With your mouse, point at one of the black cropping handles that appear on the edges of the picture.

    When you do so, your mouse pointer will look something like the following:

    • Corner cropping handle: Corner crop sizing handle

    • Side cropping handle: Side crop sizing handle

  3. To crop each side, drag the black cropping handle inward.

  4. When you are finished cropping, right-click the picture again and select Crop once more to save the change.

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