Paste Special Unformatted Text (Ms Word 2010)

I believe one of the most frequent functions used in Ms Word by the users is Copy and Paste. Why people love this function s much because it is extremely useful to save our time and energy. But to me, rather than pasting a text with the format (e.g. font type, size and color) I would prefer to have the plain text because usually I already have my custom format that different from the source text so I don’t want the source format overwrites my specified format in the target location. So whenever possible I avoid using the paste shortcut (Ctrl+V), instead to use the paste special + unformatted text menu. Although it is not practical, but it is less effort than fixing the text format if I use the regular paste shortcut.

Recently I had an idea to create a macro by recording the paste special steps and then assigned the macro to a shortcut key.


This article is the revision of the earlier one. Last time I wrote it for MS Word 2003 because there was an application bug and we should do some trick to make the paste special steps work in that version. But apparently the bug has been fixed in Ms Word 2010 and the macro works well without the trick.


Here are the steps that you want to follow:

  1. Open a new Ms Word document. In the blank document just type any text, and then copy it. We need to do this early step because later we want to run the Paste Special menu – so anyhow we must something in the clipboard.
  2. Now we start to create the macro. Run the menu View –> Macros –> Record New Macro.
  3. In the Record Macro dialog box:
    • Give the macro name as PasteUnformatted.
    • Assign the macro to Keyboard because later we want the macro runs based on a shortcut key.
    • Ensure the store is stored in the file because we want it to be accessible in all documents.


Click OK to continue.

  1. In the next dialog window, assign the shortcut key. In my example I use Ctrl+1 because this key is not used by any menu in Ms Word. We are free to use other key so long it has not been used by the other menu/macro.


Click Assign and then click Close to start recording.

  1. While the macro is recording, run the menu Paste –> Paste Special –> Unformatted Text anywhere in the document.
  2. Now stop the macro, View –> Macros –> Stop Recording.


Creating the macro is done. Quite easy, isn’t it?

Now we want to test the macro.

  1. Create a few sample texts and then set the font style (e.g. bold, italic, underline), enlarge the font size, give color, so forth. Now select and copy the text.
  2. Go to another blank area in the document, or open a new one – and then do the Ctrl+1.

Congratulation, the “paste special + unformatted text” shortcut now makes your life easier!



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