How to change the selection colors in Office 2010

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In previous versions of Office people complained that the mouse cursor reverted to some default one when using Office products. This seems to have been addressed. My issue is that not only is the Aero menu select color (very light blue) in Windows 7 seemingly unchangeable and way too light, but they used only a slightly darker blue for highlighting e-mails, text, etc. Is there a way to change these to colors that are more masculine and with more contrast?

Ruchi Bisht

Try the following steps:

1. Close Outlook

2. Right click on Desktop

3. Select Personalize > click on Window color > Advanced appearance settings

4. Click on the dropdown list under Items and click on Select Items

5. Set the required color for Selected Items

6. Apply and Save the changes

Note: text selection is a feature of Windows therefore the above changes will apply to all applications.

Ruchi Bisht


I've tried that. My "Windows" colors have been set. In Outlook 2010, however, the highlight selection is a very light blue, which is not the "selection" color I have in Windows. Windows colors don't apply to Office 2010 applications, and may other applications. In fact, changing the colors in Windows doesn't even have an effect on a lot of Windows items, when running in Aero mode. I can't get my selections in Windows Explorer or the Start menu to change from an even lighter blue than Office. Aero colors and Office 2010 colors should be changeable too, but their not.

Milly Staples [MVP]

AFAIK, the selection color for items cannot be changed. However, if you change your Office color to the Silver choice, the selection will have more contrast than if using the default Blue Office colors.

To change the Office color, select File->Options->General tab and use the dropdown to select either Silver or Black. See if using one of the other Office color schemes allows a greater contrast when viewing the selection.



This really, really, really needs to be fixed. I'm colorblind and cannot see the highlight at all. It is just not there. And 10% of the male population is colorblind as well. This default must change or you will lose a full 10% of your user base.


Indeed this REALLY needs to be changed! I was surprised about the very, very bad UI design the first time I opened Outlook 2010. The color contrast of the folders pane is way to low! It looks like the entire pane is grayed-out! This is ridiculous and really disappoints me!

I tried all the color schemes and none of them is sufficient.

Besides my 'grayed-out' issue: after a new message arrives in a folder, the number of unread messages next to the folder name is one of the most important things on the screen. How could the designers choose for blue characters on a lightblue / -gray background for number of unread messages?
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