How To Rotate Text in Excel Quickly

When your column headings are too long for them to be horizontal, you can rotate them to save more space. Here’s how to rotate text in Excel quickly.

rotate cell in excel

There are times when text inside a cell costs too much space, especially if the cells are column headings. Normally, you would widen the cell size to make them fit while being readable horizontally, but it will cost a wider paper size. Here’s how to rotate text in Excel to make it fit the paper size.

You can rotate text by 180 degrees, 45 degrees, 90 degrees, or any degree with custom alignment or orientation which can be done later. The steps are easy and you can rotate text in just a few clicks, and they can be applied in Excel 2013, Excel 2016, Excel 2019, Excel 2021, or Excel from Microsoft 365.

How to rotate text in Excel

Simply open the Microsoft Excel spreadsheet which contains the text you want to rotate. Select them, and then click the Orientation button (with rotated ab icon on it), and select any orientation you want to apply to rotate the text.

normal text in excel

In this example, angle counterclockwise is selected. You would see the text change its look and rotate counterclockwise, with the default angle of 45 degrees. If you wish to change the degree, simply click the Alignment Settings.

changing alignment in excel

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On the Alignment tab, there you can see the Orientation sidebar with its degree textbox that you can fill on your own to change its rotation degree. You can also drag it on the graph using your mouse cursor to visually customize it. Select OK to save.

changing the degree of text rotation in excel

For more examples, you can also set the angle clockwise by clicking the Angle clockwise button. Vertical text and rotating text up/down are possible too.

rotating text vertically on excel

How to cancel text rotation

If you want to go back to the normal horizontal text, you can simply click the last option you chose on the Orientation menu. For example, if you chose Angle Counterclockwise, you can go back to normal by clicking Angle Counterclockwise again.


Rotating text can be done easily on Excel, and it can be useful to save more space especially if your column headings are too long while still making it easy to read.

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