How to Capitalize Each Word in Excel: A Step-by-Step Guide

Capitalize Each Word in Excel

Ever found yourself staring at a long list of text in Excel wishing you could make each word start with a capital letter without having to retype everything? Well, you’re in luck! Excel has a nifty formula called ‘PROPER’ that can transform your text in just a few clicks. Let’s dive into how you can capitalize each word in your Excel spreadsheet.

Step by Step Tutorial on How to Capitalize Each Word in Excel

Before we get started, let’s understand what we’re going to achieve. By following these steps, you’ll be able to capitalize the first letter of each word in a cell or range of cells in your Excel spreadsheet.

Step 1: Select the Cells You Want to Capitalize

Select the cell or range of cells where you want the capitalized words to appear.

This step is pretty straightforward, just click on the cell or drag your mouse to highlight a range.

Step 2: Enter the PROPER Formula

Type in the PROPER formula in the formula bar.

The formula looks like this: =PROPER(A1). Replace ‘A1’ with the cell reference that contains the text you want to capitalize.

Step 3: Press Enter and Drag the Fill Handle

After entering the formula, press Enter and then drag the fill handle to apply the formula to additional cells if needed.

The fill handle is the small square at the bottom right corner of the cell. When you click and drag it across other cells, it copies the formula to those cells.

After completing these steps, the text in the selected cells will have each word capitalized. It’s that simple!

What Happens After You Capitalize Each Word in Excel

Once you’ve applied the PROPER formula, the text in your selected cells will display each word with a capitalized first letter. This change is instant and will apply to all the text within the cell, making your data look more professional and easier to read.

Tips for Capitalizing Each Word in Excel

  • Remember that the PROPER function won’t capitalize words following a number or punctuation mark.
  • Use the ‘Paste Special’ feature to convert the formula results into static text if you don’t want them linked to the original cells.
  • The PROPER function also capitalizes letters following an apostrophe, which can be useful for names like O’Brien.
  • Combine the PROPER function with other text functions like TRIM to remove any extra spaces before capitalizing.
  • If you have acronyms or specific words that need to remain in uppercase, you’ll need to adjust these manually after using the PROPER function.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the PROPER Function?

The PROPER function is a formula in Excel that changes the first letter of each word in a text string to uppercase.

Can I Capitalize Just the First Letter of a Sentence?

Yes, to capitalize just the first letter of a sentence, use the UPPER function on the first letter and combine it with the LOWER function for the rest of the sentence.

Does the PROPER Function Change Numbers or Punctuation?

No, the PROPER function does not affect numbers or punctuation. It only changes letters to uppercase.

Can I Use the PROPER Function on Multiple Cells at Once?

Absolutely! Just select the range of cells you want to apply the function to, and use the fill handle to copy the formula across.

What if I Want to Undo the Capitalization?

If you want to undo the capitalization, simply remove the PROPER function from the cells or use the ‘Undo’ feature (Ctrl + Z).


  1. Select the cells you want to capitalize.
  2. Enter the PROPER formula.
  3. Press Enter and use the fill handle if necessary.


Mastering the art of capitalizing each word in Excel can save you a colossal amount of time and effort, especially when dealing with large datasets. With the PROPER function at your disposal, you can ensure consistent text formatting across your spreadsheets. Remember, while the PROPER function is powerful, it’s not perfect. You’ll still need to double-check for any special cases like acronyms or specific terms that don’t follow the standard capitalization rules.

In the vast world of Excel functions, PROPER might seem like just a small player, but it’s these little tools that make Excel such a versatile and indispensable software for data management. So go ahead, give it a try, and watch your text transform from the mundane to the magnificent. And if you ever forget, just come back to this guide on how to capitalize each word in Excel for a quick refresher. Happy capitalizing!

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