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How can I change the look of a message in my Inbox or other folder in Outlook?

Conditional formatting can be used to change the look of messages given a specific set of circumstances. Eg messages set to a particular category type, from a specific address,  containing certain text in the title and many other circumstances.

Below are specific instructions on how to create a new rule to be applied to a message of a chosen category

  1. Click to select a folder (such as your Inbox), then click the View menu tab.
  2. In the Current View tool group, click on View Settings.
  3. In the Advanced View settings dialogue box, click the Conditional Formatting... button.
    A set of standard formatting rules appears.
  4. Click on Add
  5. Enter the Rule Name eg Action Category
  6. Click on the Condition… button, More Choices tab
  7. Click on Categories… button and select the category
  8. Click OK
    That sets the what/when now to set how you want it to look.
  9. Click the Font... button.
  10. For example, select the Unread messages rule.
  11. Change the font and colour settings as desired, then click OK.
  12. Click on OK and then OK again, to close the View Settings dialogue.
    You should see the current folder showing the chosen new display characteristics.

Specific information for changing unread emails can be found in FAQ 2293

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This is question number 2725, which appears in the following categories:

Created by Samantha Jane Elmer on 5 June 2015 and last updated by Richard Byrom-Colburn on 20 October 2016