How to Have Outlook Highlight Mail Sent to You Only

Highlighter marker pen

Microsoft Outlook makes it really easy to force messages to stand out at a glance if they were sent to just you. This is really helpful if you get lots of emails sent to more addresses than just yours.

For example, if you're often in group messages, and your reply isn't necessarily required, you might find it annoying to have to open each of those messages only to find out that it was sent to lots of other people too.

With this little trick explained below, you can force all messages addressed to just you to be formatted a unique way so that it's easy to simply glance at your email and know which emails you need to open.

Have Outlook Highlight Mail Sent to You Only

  1. Open the view settings

    • Outlook 2016/2013: Go to View > View Settings
    • Outlook 2007: Navigate to View > Current View > Customize Current View...
    • Outlook 2003: Open the View > Arrange By > Current View > Customize Current View menu
  2. Choose Conditional Formatting... or Automatic Formatting (depending on your version of MS Office).

  3. Click or tap the Add button.

  4. Name the rule whatever you like, such as Highlight my messages.

  5. Open the Font... menu and select the desired formatting style for these messages. These are the settings that explain what emails addressed to just you will look like when they arrive.

  6. Hit OK to save those settings.

  7. Make sure your rule (which was created in set 4) is selected, and then open the Condition... menu.

  8. Put a check in the box next to Where I am:, and then choose the only person on the To line from that drop-down menu.

  9. If you only want to apply this formatting style to messages that you have yet to open (so that read messages will look just like other messages), go into the More Choices tab and put a check next to Only items that are:, and then choose unread

  10. Choose OK a few times to save and exit the screens you opened.