How to Change Font Color

Most computer text comes in black on a white background by default . However, if you want to change the text color for artistic or functional reasons, it's usually easy to do. Nearly all fonts support color changes, and nearly all computer applications -- including word processors and email clients -- offer an easy, fast way to implement color changes.

Man working on laptop
Changing the font color can emphasize key points.
credit: BartekSzewczyk/iStock/Getty Images

Changing Existing Text Color in a Word Processor

Word processors make it easy to change font colors. Highlight the text you want to change. Then locate the font color icon, which usually looks like a colored letter "A" or a letter "A" with coloring around it. Sometimes the coloring is black. Otherwise, blue and red are common. If you aren't sure which is which, hover your mouse cursor over the icon. In most word processors, including Microsoft Word, mouseover text pops up and announces the name of the icon, which should be "Font Color." Click on this icon and choose from the drop-down box of color options to change the selected text.

Changing New Text Color in a Word Processor

To pick a new color for text that you haven't written yet, don't highlight anything. Just set your text cursor at the point in the document where you want the color change to begin. Then, click on the font color icon and choose the color you want. When you resume typing, your text will appear in the new color.

Changing Font Color in an Email or IM Window

Web email and instant message interfaces evolved from word processor interfaces, so the steps to change font color are virtually identical. To change the color of something you've already written, highlight it and click on the font color icon -- which once again usually looks like a colored letter "A." To set a new color for future text, just go straight to the font color icon and pick what you want. In emails and instant messages, your color options are usually limited.

Changing Font Color When Designing a Website

If you're using a website template to build your site, the color-changing process is similar to that for a word processor. To change the color on existing text, select the text you want to recolor, click on the font color icon -- which usually looks like a colored letter -- and choose from the available color listings. You can also press the button proactively to select a font color for text you are about to write. You can also change or set the text color directly in the markup, using the CSS "color" property. The website W3Schools offers thorough, novice-level instructional pages on this process.