Software & Apps MS Office How to Make an Image Background Transparent in PowerPoint Use PowerPoint's built-in background remover by Wendy Russell Writer Former Lifewire writer Wendy Russell is an experienced teacher specializing in live communications, graphics design, and PowerPoint software. our editorial process Wendy Russell Updated on October 23, 2020 reviewed by Jon Fisher Lifewire Tech Review Board Member Jonathan Fisher is a CompTIA certified technologist with more than 6 years' experience writing for publications like TechNorms and Help Desk Geek. our review board Article reviewed on Mar 27, 2020 Jon Fisher MS Office Powerpoint Word Excel Outlook Tweet Share Email Removing the background of an image in PowerPoint makes that portion of the picture transparent, allowing whatever is behind the picture, such as text or another color or picture, to show. This is handy if you want to blend your photos into the slide background seamlessly. Learn how to add clip art and pictures to PowerPoint slides Instructions in this article apply to PowerPoint 2019, PowerPoint 2016, PowerPoint 2013, PowerPoint 2010, PowerPoint for Microsoft 365, PowerPoint 2016 for Mac, and PowerPoint for Mac 2011. Ellen Liundner / Lifewire How to Use PowerPoint's Background Remover When the background in a picture is a solid color, it's easy to remove the background so that only the main image appears in the picture. Open the PowerPoint presentation and go to the slide with the image to which you want to apply a transparent background. Select the image. A new tab, Picture Tools Format, is added to PowerPoint. Lifewire If you have multiple images on a slide and can't select the one you want to work with, right-click any pictures that are on top of it and select Send to Back to temporarily move them out of the way. Go to Picture Tools Format and select Remove Background. In PowerPoint for Mac, go to Picture Format and choose Remove Background. Lifewire PowerPoint colors the image pink to indicate the parts that it thinks is the background. To customize which areas of the picture are kept and which are made transparent, choose either Mark Areas to Keep or Mark Areas to Remove to designate parts of the photo that should remain or be deleted. Then, draw a line around the area on the picture. In PowerPoint for Mac, use What to keep or What to remove. Lifewire Select Keep Changes to apply the edits. Sometimes, the image ends up with more or less transparency than you'd like it to have. If so, just repeat the steps above. PowerPoint saves all your changes and even lets you revert back to the original, non-transparent version. To save the edited image to use elsewhere, right-click the image and select Save as Picture to save the picture with the transparent background on your computer. Make a Single Color Transparent There is another way to make a solid color in the image transparent. For instance, you can make a white background see-through. Select the image and go to Picture Tools Format. Mac users need to press Picture Format. In Mac 2011, it's called Format Picture. Select Color to display a list of color variations and choose Set Transparent Color. Mac 2011 users must choose Recolor first, and then Set Transparent Color. Lifewire Select an area of the picture that is the color you want to make transparent. Removing objects from a picture or deleting a solid color works best on images that are made up of simple colors, like clip art or cartoon-like photos. Photos and other complex images with multiple objects and similar color shades are difficult to edit in this way.