What to do with Styles now the toolbars are gone

The loss of the toolbars for applying most commonly used styles has created major headaches for experienced users of Word.

This is my personal solution. It is messy to set up but works well once you are used to it.

Place your most commonly used styles on the Styles Gallery
  1. Establish how many styles display in the Styles Gallery without using the More arrows. On my screen this is 8.
  2. Assign these a value of 1 using the Manage Styles option. They will then be permanently visible when you have the Home tab selected.
I use the Styles Group much of the time if I am only using a few styles. I have these styles on the top row (Body Text, Bullet 1, Exercise Text, Exercise bullet, Heading 1, 2, 3, 4) which takes care of the bulk of the formatting I do on my books for example.

Place your most commonly used styles on the Styles Pane
  1. Establish how many styles display in the Styles Pane without scrolling. For me this is 28 if the Pane is fixed and 36 if it is floating.
  2. Give the next 20 most important styles a value of 2. This way your most important 28 are always visible with the Styles Pane open.
I keep the Styles Pane open all the time and if I am using my lesser used styles, I tend to work from it and ignore the Styles Group.

Place the Style dropdown on the Quick Access Toolbar

I use the Style dropdown, placed to the left of the Quick Access Toolbar.
  • if I have two documents side by side and so do not have room for the Styles pane.
  • when I am doing some kind of search with the Navigation Pane open. I can easily see what style is applied to the selected Search result.
You will find it under Popular Commands.


  1. I'm inclined to a solution that minimizes the amount of on-screen real estate consumed so I'd prefer the Style dropdown. I really dislike the Style pane as it consumes so much of the screen. In my Word 2003 templates, I have custom toolbar buttons for a bunch of styles that I typically use in the documents I create. I'm about to install Word 2010 to see what I can do with it to make it as easy to use as Word 2003. I installed Word 2007 but never took to it as they welded on the training wheels. My understanding is that Word 2010 is much better.

  2. I like the look of your page.