How to Label Outgoing Emails While Composing Them in Gmail

Organize your messages before they get out of hand

Labels for Art vs Craft Show

Allison McDonald / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Gmail makes it fast and easy to apply labels to the emails you get so that those belonging together stay together, even when their subjects and senders and conversations do not.

What about the emails you send, though? To make them appear together with the other labeled messages (even when their subjects and conversations do not belong), you'll have to go to the Sent Mail label after delivery, check the messages and apply all desired tags or stars.

Fortunately, that's only one way to label or star outgoing mail. Gmail also allows you to tag and apply stars as you compose.

Label Outgoing Emails While Composing Them in Gmail

To add labels to an email you are composing in Gmail or star it (and have the labels or starring retained for all replies and other messages in the conversation):

  1. Start with a new message in Gmail (Select Compose or press C on the keyboard).

    Gmail compose message
  2. Select the More options icon in the toolbar at the bottom of the compose window. It's three stacked dots toward the right side.

  3. A new menu will open. Choose Labels from that menu.

    Gmail compose more options
  4. Another menu will pop up with the available labels on your Gmail account. Check off the one that you want to use.

    Gmail compose label options
  5. If you'd rather start a new label, you can do that too. Select Create new, and enter your new label.

    Gmail create new label
  6. Before you're done, you can also choose to Star the message as well from the same menu.

    Gmail star message
  7. When you are done, select the body of your message again to close the menus.

  8. Write your message and send it the way you normally would. The label(s) that you applied will be applied to the message itself and the conversation that it spawns.