How to Strike Through on Google Docs

600143 How to Strike Through on Google Docs

Strikethrough is a useful text formatting option to indicate text that is outdated, incorrect, or should be deleted. When text is struck through, a horizontal line runs through the center of the text. Here is everything you need to know about using strikethrough formatting in Google Docs.

Accessing the Strikethrough Option

There are two main ways to apply strikethrough formatting in Google Docs:

  • Using the Menu:
    1. Highlight the text you want to strike through
    2. Click Format > Text > Strikethrough
  • Using Keyboard Shortcuts:
    • Windows: Ctrl + Alt + 5
    • Mac: ⌘ + Shift + X

Advantages of Keyboard Shortcuts

The keyboard shortcuts provide the fastest way to apply strikethrough formatting. Once you memorize them, you can quickly strike through text without taking your hands off the keyboard or clicking through menus. This improves efficiency when editing documents.

Removing Strikethrough

Removing strikethrough formatting is just as easy as adding it:

  • Using the Menu:
    1. Highlight the struck through text
    2. Click Format > Text > Strikethrough
  • Using Keyboard Shortcuts:
    • Windows: Ctrl + Alt + 5
    • Mac: ⌘ + Shift + X

The same keyboard shortcuts used for applying strikethrough will remove it when used on text that already has the formatting.

Use Cases for Strikethrough

There are several common reasons to use strikethrough formatting:

Indicating Deletions and Changes

Strikethrough allows you to show deletions, corrections, or changes without losing the original text. This helps when:

  • Tracking changes in collaborative documents
  • Preserving information that may still be relevant
  • Showing an edit history

For example:

The population of Los Angeles is 3.5 4 million people.

Crossing Out To-Do List Items

Strike through completed items on task lists and to-do lists:

  • [x] Write first draft
  • [ ] Revise sections 1 and 2
  • [ ] Fact check details

This allows you to digitally replicate crossing off tasks with a pen.

Showing Humor or Sarcasm

A strikethrough can add humor or irony:

My friend is just an awful delightful person to be around.

Modifying Strikethrough Appearance

You can customize the way strikethrough looks in Google Docs by modifying the text color and strikethrough style.

Change Text Color

To change the color of struck through text:

  1. Highlight the text
  2. Click Format > Text color
  3. Choose a color

For example, you may want red strikethrough to emphasize text that is outdated or no longer accurate.

Change Strikethrough Style

To modify the style of the strikethrough line:

  1. Highlight the text
  2. Click Format > Text > Strikethrough options
  3. Select single or double line

A double strikethrough can make the formatting stand out more.

Strikethrough in Tables and Lists

The strikethrough option works for text in tables, bulleted lists, and numbered lists in the same way. Simply highlight the text you want to strike through and use the menu or keyboard shortcuts.

For example, you may want to strike through table rows or list items that are no longer needed. The flexibility to use strikethrough across tables, lists, and normal text makes it easy to indicate changes directly within your content.

Collaborating with Strikethrough

When collaborating on Google Docs with multiple people, consider using strikethrough for tracking changes and revisions. The visual indicator makes it easy for collaborators to see where edits have occurred.

However, keep in mind that excessive use of formatting like strikethrough can make documents messy and difficult to read. Use it judiciously when collaborating.

Troubleshooting Strikethrough Issues

In some cases, applying strikethrough can be tricky:

  • If the keyboard shortcuts don’t work, make sure formatting shortcuts are enabled in your Google Docs settings
  • Problems may occur if multiple formatting options like bold, italic, and underline are applied in combination with strikethrough
  • Try clearing all formatting and starting over with just strikethrough if you run into issues
  • Consider whether an add-on or extension could be interfering with the formatting

Reaching out to Google support or the Google Docs community may help troubleshoot persistent strikethrough problems.


With the strikethrough option, Google Docs provides an easy way to indicate outdated, unnecessary, or deleted text—making it a versatile formatting tool.

The keyboard shortcuts offer the fastest way to strike through text, while the menu options provide more customization for changing colors and styles.

So whether you’re managing task lists, tracking changes, making edits, or adding humor, use strikethrough formatting to enhance your Google Docs workflow.