A Systematic Guide to Eliminating Gridlines in Excel

how to Eliminate Gridlines in Excel

Excel is the data visualization Swiss Army knife for businesses. With its powerful tools to organize, analyze, and share information, Excel enables insightful, data-driven decisions.

But even the sharpest knives need honing for optimal performance. In Excel, a straightforward way to hone your Excel is by removing gridlines, those faint gray lines between cells disrupting the sheet's aesthetic flow.

Just like how Peter Parker from Spider-Man had to declutter his chaotic room and workspace to focus on his superhero mission, removing gridlines eliminates visual distractions for a streamlined data workspace.

Eliminating Gridlines in Excel

With fewer obstructions, insights and trends become more accessible to spot as your data moves into the spotlight.

This comprehensive guide will teach us to remove Excel gridlines with just a few clicks. We will cover this simple tweak's immense benefits for aesthetics and analysis. With expert tips ranging from tweaking settings to custom formatting, one can tailor gridline removal to their unique needs.

Let's start honing Excel's knife by clearing away unnecessary gridline clutter!

Revolutionizing Excel Aesthetics: The Art of Gridline Elegance!

Before jumping into the how, let's first understand why one might want to remove gridlines in Excel.

Improved Document Aesthetics

One of the biggest reasons to remove gridlines is to improve the overall look of the Excel documents. Gridlines are visual clutter that can make Excel look messy and unprofessional. Removing them gives the worksheets a cleaner, streamlined appearance, preventing the content from looking crowded.

A gridline-free look for formal reports, client presentations, financial statements, and other important documents enhances the aesthetic appeal and makes them appear polished and visually appealing. The content becomes the hero without the gridlines competing for attention.

Enhanced Data Readability

In addition to improving aesthetics, removing gridlines enhances the readability of data in Excel. Gridlines make it slightly more challenging to read cell contents as the eyes are drawn to the lines instead of the text or numbers in the cells.

Getting rid of the gridlines reduces visual distractions and allows one to better focus on the actual data. This improved readability and focus can, in turn, help with data analysis and interpretation. Removing gridlines declutters the view so the essential data becomes the focal point.


Gridlines serve an on-screen purpose to provide structure but become unnecessary clutter when printing reports. Printed Excel documents with gridlines tend to look messy. Removing them makes the printed Excel worksheets look clean, professional, and presentable - ideal for official reports, financial statements, client invoices, and more.

Impactful Charts and Graphs

Gridlines can interfere with charts and graphs created in Excel by adding unnecessary lines and visual noise. Removing them creates a cleaner backdrop that helps the actual chart or graph stand out better visually. Eliminating gridlines allows for a more seamless and minimalistic integration of charts in Excel Excels.

Now that we've covered the key benefits let's look at the various ways to remove gridlines in Excel.

There are several easy methods for getting rid of gridlines in Excel worksheets. Here are the top three approaches:

Method 1: Changing Excel Settings

The most straightforward way is to simply adjust the global display settings in Excel, which controls the visibility of gridlines. Turning off the "Show gridlines" option removes them throughout the application.

Method 2: Using Excel Functions

One can use Excel functions like the VBA macro code to programmatically turn off the display of gridlines in a specific worksheet. This automates the process using Excel's functionality.

Method 3: Applying Cell Formatting

Rather than removing the gridlines, this method keeps them but obscures them from view by applying background formatting like white fill color to the cells.

Now, let's look at these methods and the steps to implement them in greater detail.

Dance of the Data: A Whimsical Walkthrough on Bidding Farewell to Gridlines in Excel

This method involves tweaking Excel's global settings to turn off the gridlines displayed across all worksheets.

Changing Excel Settings
  • Open the Excel file containing the worksheet while ensuring one has admin access.
  • Click on the File tab in the top-left corner and select Options from the sidebar menu. Alternatively, use the keyboard shortcut Alt + F, T.
  • In the Excel Options dialog box, click on Advanced in the left sidebar.
  • In the Advanced section, scroll down to find the Display options for the worksheet settings.
  • Uncheck the box next to the Show Gridlines option.
  • Click OK at the bottom to apply the changes.
  • The gridlines should now be hidden from the active worksheet. Repeat the steps for other sheets.

This approach is recommended because it allows you to toggle the gridlines on/off application-wide with a simple settings change. It takes effect on all worksheets, so you don't have to remove gridlines sheet by sheet.

Method 2: Using Excel Functions

This method relies on Excel functions and VBA macro code to programmatically turn off the display of gridlines.

Using Excel Functions
  • Open the Visual Basic Editor in Excel by pressing Alt + F11 on your keyboard or navigating to Developer > Visual Basic.
  • Insert a new module into the project explorer pane.
  • Paste the following VBA macro code into the module:

Sub HideGridlines()

 ActiveWindow.DisplayGridlines = False

End Sub

  • Run the macro by pressing the F5 shortcut key or clicking Run in the toolbar.
  • This will execute the code and disable the gridline display for the active worksheet window.
  • To re-enable gridlines, modify the code to set DisplayGridlines to True.

The advantage of this method is that one can add extra logic and parameters to control the gridline visibility more granularly across specific worksheet tabs or cell ranges.

Method 3: Applying Cell Formatting

Applying Cell Formatting

Rather than removing the gridlines entirely, this method retains them but obscures them from view using background cell formatting:

  • Select the worksheet cells from which you want to hide the gridlines.
  • Right-click and choose Format Cells from the context menu.
  • In the Format Cells dialog box, go to the Fill tab.
  • Select the white background fill color.
  • Click OK to apply the formatting.
  • The white background will mask the gridlines for those cells, blending them into the background.
  • Repeat for other cell ranges as needed.

The benefit of this approach is its flexibility. One can hide gridlines from specific parts of a worksheet rather than the entire thing.

When to Use Each Method

The best method depends on one's specific needs:

  • Use Method 1 to remove gridlines application-wide if they are not needed at all.
  • Use Method 2 to toggle the gridlines programmatically via VBA macros.
  • Use Method 3 to hide gridlines from specific cells or ranges selectively.

As we can see, Excel provides ample options to eliminate gridlines. Let's look at why we may want to eliminate them in the first place.

Unshackling Your Excel: The Marvelous Perks of Setting Excel Gridlines Free! 

Removing the gridlines from your Excel worksheets and workbooks comes with several benefits:

Enhanced Visuality and Readability

Clean Excel documents command more professional appeal. As discussed earlier, the removal of gridlines enhances the aesthetics of Excel documents and reduces visual clutter. This makes it easier to process and analyze data with improved readability. 

Better Printing and Presentation

The elimination of gridlines enables Excel worksheets to be printed and presented more effectively in formal business settings. Printed Excel documents appear clutter-free and polished without the oft-unnecessary gridlines getting in the way. Even during in-person presentations, gridline-free worksheets project a more visually impressive image.

Streamlined Charting

Charts and graphs represent data visually, but if included in the chart's backdrop, Excel's default gridlines can interfere with this visual representation. Removing them creates a cleaner foundation for presenting charts and graphs, thus making the Excel charts easier to interpret and more impactful without competing gridlines.

Enhanced Collaboration

For collaborative projects involving multiple stakeholders, removing non-essential elements like gridlines helps streamline the focus on what matters most, i.e., the data. Viewers can better collaborate on analyzing and interpreting the data without visual clutter getting in the way.

As you can see, removing Excel gridlines has tangible benefits for presentation, readability, interpretations, and collaboration.

Funky Queries on Gridline Liberation: Sorting Out the Whimsical Woes of a Grid-Free Excel Adventure! 

Some common concerns about removing gridlines include:

Loss of Structure

Gridlines provide a visual structure for locating cells in Excel. Removing them can cause some loss of positioning support.

Reduced Readability

For some Excel users, gridlines improve readability by separating data into cells. Removing them may reduce readability for specific use cases.

Layout Challenges

Designing aligned layouts can be trickier without gridlines to follow. They provide guides that can aid in layout and formatting.

Difficulty Locating Cells

Locating specific cells to input or update data can be more complex without gridline guides, especially in large Excels.

Extra Formatting Needed

Removing gridlines may require additional formatting, like borders for separation. This extra work can be tedious.

However, these concerns are usually outweighed by the benefits in most business use cases. Strategic use of borders, background colors, or bands can help mitigate the potential downsides of removing gridlines in Excel.

Decoding the Gridline Dilemma: When to Keep Those Straight-Laced Lines and When to Set Your Data Free to Party!

While removing gridlines is recommended in most scenarios, there are some cases where retaining them makes sense:

  • For everyday data entry and calculations, gridlines provide helpful structure.
  • During Excel design and layout, gridlines can help guide positioning.
  • For troubleshooting or auditing formulas, gridlines help identify cell locations.
  • When working with children or students, gridlines provide helpful separation.
  • On lower-resolution screens, gridlines improve clarity between cells.
  • For formal business documents, the cleaner look gained by removing gridlines is worth the minor loss of visual structure.

Gridlines on Autopilot: Let Your Virtual Sidekick Master the Art of Spontaneous Gridline Vanishing!

Removing gridlines from multiple Excel worksheets and documents can be tedious and time-consuming. A more straightforward solution is outsourcing this task to a skilled virtual assistant.

Virtual assistants are independent contractors who remotely provide administrative and clerical support to businesses.

May the Force (of virtual assistance) be with you! Your VA light saber will slice through those gridlines with ease.

virtual assistants for excel

Hiring one to handle removing your Excel gridlines offers many benefits:

Saves You Time and Effort

Delegating the gridline removal task saves one the hassle and allows one to invest time in higher-value work. Time savings is one of the most significant benefits of outsourcing.

Expert Help On-Demand

A virtual assistant specializing in Excel provides expert-level assistance. They handle the cleanup and optimization expertly and efficiently.

Enhanced Productivity

Not getting bogged down by mundane formatting tasks enhances workforce productivity. The team can stay focused on core business objectives.

Cost Savings

Virtual assistants are more affordable than hiring full-time employees for administrative tasks, ensuring an optimal balance of quality and cost.


Virtual assistance is easy to scale up or down as the needs change and helps handle fluctuating workloads.

Custom Expertise

Hire VAs with specialized expertise in Excel, data processing, and document formatting to fit one's needs ideally.

Finding the right virtual assistant takes care and research. Review portfolios, skills, and experience levels carefully before hiring. Reputable firms like Wishup can match you with pre-vetted candidates optimized for your requirements.

Unlocking the Virtual Wonderland: Why Wishup is the Ultimate VIP Lounge for Your Virtual Assistant Shenanigans!

Wishup offers top-quality virtual assistants and manages the hiring process for you. Here are some key benefits of using Wishup:

wishup virtual assistants
  • Wishup is a reputed virtual assistant company that provides dedicated virtual assistants trained in tools like Asana, Google Workspace, Office 365, and Dropbox. Here's how we can help:
  • Our VAs are available for as low as $799 monthly without hidden fees. You pay-as-you-go based on your needs.
  • We ensure reliability with time tracking, random screen monitoring, quality analysis, and guaranteed SLAs(Service Level Agreements).
  • Our 0.1% selection rate ensures you get the best English-speaking college graduates with proven skills.
  • Once you sign up, your VA can start to work within 24 hours for quick assistance.
  • There's no need to allocate a budget for training.
  • We conduct rigorous 400+ hours of training before deployment. You get job-ready VAs.
  • We offer a replacement guarantee within 15 days if you are not satisfied.
  • Sign up for a no-strings-attached 7-day free trial to evaluate our services.


Like decluttering a messy workspace, eliminating Excel gridlines clears away visual distractions. This spotlights your data for enhanced readability and presentation. While gridlines provide some structure, in most cases, removing them improves clarity and focus. 

Cleaning up gridlines manually in multiple sheets is tedious. For an easy solution, hire a skilled virtual assistant to optimize your Excel expertly. With platforms like Wishup, get access to Excel experts dedicated to decluttering your documents.

Don't settle for disorganized Excels cluttered with unnecessary lines. Implement these tips to transform Excel into a clean, visually impressive data workspace. Remove clutter for a refreshing upgrade that makes your information pop.

Ready to eliminate gridline distractions? Contact Wishup today for the perfect virtual assistant match to level up your Excel game. With refreshed Excels that showcase your data, you'll be ready to dive into nimble analysis and decision-making.


Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get rid of grid lines in sheets?

Uncheck the "Show gridlines" option in the Excel Options menu. Or apply white-fill formatting to obscure them.

How Do I Reapply Gridlines if Needed?

Return to the Excel Options menu and check the "Show gridlines" box to turn them back on.

Can I Remove Gridlines for Specific Sections Only?

Yes, select the cells where you want to remove gridlines first. Then, apply formatting like white fill just to those cells.

Is There an Easy Way to Remove Gridlines from Multiple Sheets?

Use Method 1 to toggle the global Excel settings and disable gridlines application-wide. This removes them in one click across all sheets.

Will Removing Gridlines Mess Up My Formatting?

Removing gridlines does not affect cell formatting, colors, or borders. Only the lines between cells are removed.

Can I Create Custom Gridlines on Certain Sheets?

You can customize gridline colors and styles for specific sheets while removing them from others.

Do Gridlines Print or Show in PDF Exports?

Gridlines will print and export to PDF unless explicitly removed. Use one of the methods in this guide before printing.

Is There a Way to Temporarily Toggle Gridlines On/Off?

Create a macro to show/hide gridlines on demand quickly. This allows temporary visibility control.

Will Data Visibility Be Reduced Without Gridlines?

Slightly, but the enhanced readability outweighs this concern in most cases. Strategically use borders or bands for separation.

Can I Get Gridlines Back in Their Original Default Style?

Use Excel Options to restore the built-in gridline style if you want consistency across sheets.