How to Use Curved Text in PowerPoint

Bend words around objects and create interesting lines with your text

What to Know

  • Curving text around a shape or graphic maximizes space and adds creativity to your presentation.
  • Text is initially added using WordArt options, but can then be adjusted with other tools.
  • Manipulate the text with Drawing, Path, and Warp tools to create curves and add depth to your text.

This article shows you how to bend text to your will in PowerPoint using the WordArt function of PowerPoint along with Path and Warp tools.

Instructions in this article apply to PowerPoint 2019, PowerPoint 2016, PowerPoint 2013, PowerPoint 2010, PowerPoint for Microsoft 365, and PowerPoint for Mac.

Add Your Text Using WordArt

The first step to creating bent or curved text is to insert WordArt into your presentation.

  1. Go to Insert.

  2. In the Text group, select WordArt.

    Inserting WordArt in PowerPoint
  3. Choose the style of text to add to your document. You'll customize or change the text style after it's been inserted.

  4. Highlight the sample text provided and enter your text.

Alter the Text Path

Once your WordArt is inserted, you will highlight the text and alter the text path.

  1. Select the WordArt text box.

  2. Go to Drawing Tools Format.

    Selecting the text to activate the Format tab in PowerPoint
  3. Select Text Effects.

  4. Point to Transform.

    Transform text effects in PowerPoint
  5. Choose an effect from the Follow Path section or Warp section. To see how the effect will look with your text, point to it to preview the effect on the slide.

Each Transform option may be adjusted to scale your text and preserve readability. A control handle appears at different locations within the text box (sometimes the border, sometimes in the center). Drag the control handle to adjust the path so that your text is just right for your presentation. On a PC, the control handle is a yellow circle; on a Mac, it's a pink square.

Use Follow Path to Create Bent or Circular Text

The Follow Path option allows you to manipulate the text in a curve, either an arc or a full circle. The shape of the curve may be determined by the size of your text box. For example, a perfectly square text box will give a perfect circle as the path.

Follow Path text effect in PowerPoint

To adjust the curve of the path, drag the control handle.

Use Warp to Bend and Enhance Text

By contrast, the Warp option bends and stretches text with a variety of pre-programmed options.

The image below illustrates the Fade Up style, which may be adjusted using the control handle.

Fade Up text effect in PowerPoint

Change the Style of Curved Text in PowerPoint

WordArt can be adjusted and customized easily. Highlight the WordArt text box, go to Drawing Tools Format and select a different Shape Style. Choose Text Fill or Text Outline to customize the colors. To change the font, go to Home and choose a different font style.