How to Unhide Columns in Excel (8 Methods)

In this article, we are going to illustrate 7+ methods with examples to unhide columns in Excel. The feature to hide a column in Excel makes columns disappear from the display. You may have a lot of columns but don’t need to work with them all at once. To hide and unhide columns in Excel is important to make your worksheet looks clean.


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8 Suitable Methods to Unhide Columns in Excel

Our dataset is a list of the States in the U.S, their two-letter abbreviations, and their capital cities that are represented by Column A, Column B, and Column C consequently.

 Unhide Columns in Excel


1. Unhide Columns in Excel Using Context Menu

The first method shows how to show hidden columns in Excel using the context menu. In our example dataset, we have got one of the three columns hidden (Column B). Let’s make it visible by using the context menu.

  •  Firstly, we have to select the columns (Column A and Column C) to the left and right of Column B.

Unhide Columns in Excel

  • Then, we have to Right Click the mouse and choose Unhide.

Unhide Columns in Excel

  • Finally, we’ve got our hidden column revealed.


2. Show Hidden Columns with Home Tab of Excel Ribbon

The Home Tab of Excel provides the option to hide and unhide columns. In this method, we are going to explore that option.

  • At first, we need to select columns A to C.

Unhide Columns in Excel using Home Tab

  • Then, from the Excel Ribbon:
    • Select Home tab
    • Click Format option
    • From Visibility hover on the Hide & Unhide
    • Finally, choose Unhide Columns option

Unhide Columns in Excel using Home Tab

As a result, we’ll have our hidden column B unhidden.


3. Keyboard Shortcut to Unhide Columns in Excel

Keyboard shortcuts can perform a task easily and quickly. Excel provides keyboard shortcuts to unhide columns. Let’s dive in:

  • In the first step, we have to select the columns (Column A, Column C)  to the left and right of the column (Column B) we want to unhide.

Unhide Columns in Excel Keyboard Shortcut

  • Now, on your keyboard press Alt + H + O + L and see the output.

Unhide Columns in Excel


4. Reveal Hidden Columns by Setting Column Width in Excel

The context menu (Right-Click Menu) has the option to define a column width that can be used to make hidden columns visible. In our dataset:

  •  After selecting columns A and C, right-click the mouse to pop up the context menu and, then click on Column Width.

Unhide Columns in Excel column width

  • The above step will show up in the Column Width window. Put any desired value as we put 20, in this instance. At the end of the process, hit OK.

Unhide Columns in Excel Using Column Width

  • Finally, the output shows Column B visible.


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5. Use the Go To Command to Disclose Hidden Columns in Excel

In this example, we hide column A, the first column of the dataset. As a result, there is nothing to select to the left of the hidden column. So, we’ll use Go To command to first select a cell of the hidden column and then reveal the whole column A.

  • Press Ctrl + G to open up the Go To window. Put A2 in the Reference input box and hit OK. Now, cell A2 is selected in the worksheet although it is not visible.

Unhide Columns in Excel using Go To Method

  • Now, from the Excel Ribbon:
    • Select Home tab
    • Click Format option
    • From Visibility hover on the Hide & Unhide
    • Finally, choose Unhide Columns option

Unhide Columns in Excel using Go To Method

  • The final result is here:


6. Use Find and Select to Show Hidden Columns in Excel

Using the Find & Select method, we can disclose a column in Excel. At first, we have to find and select a cell of that hidden column by using Find & Select. Using the same dataset, we have got column B as hidden. Let’s follow the guide:

  • From the Home tab of Excel Ribbon, click Find & Select and then choose Find.

Unhide Columns in Excel Using Find & Replace

  • In the Find and Replace window:
    • Put a value (Here we put AL, the value of B2 Cell of the hidden column  B) of any of the hidden column’s cells in the Find what input box
    • Check Match entire cell contents option
    • Click the Find Next button
    • Then, Close the window.

This will get cell B2 of column B selected.

Unhide Columns in Excel Using Find & Replace

  • Now, from the Excel Ribbon:
    • Select Home tab
    • Click Format option
    • From Visibility hover on the Hide & Unhide
    • Finally, choose Unhide Columns option.

Unhide Columns in Excel using Go To Method

That’ll unhide the hidden column successfully.


7. Show Hidden Columns by Double Clicking the Hidden Column Indicator

  • In Excel, when we hide a column it shows a double line indicator.

Unhide Columns in Excel Using Doble Click

  • Double click the indicator; it’ll bring our hidden column into the light.


8. VBA Code to Disclose Hidden Columns in Excel

Using simple VBA code is also an easy solution to unhide a hidden column in MS Excel. Let’s see how we can perform this:

  • Go to the Developer tab and click the Visual Basic option.

Unhide Columns in Excel using VBA

  • It would open up the Visual Basic editor. From here, create a new Module from the Insert tab option.

  • Finally, we need to put the code and run (F5) it.
Sub UnhideCols()
    Columns.EntireColumn.Hidden = False
End Sub

Things to Remember

Hiding a column in Excel makes a column disappear from the view, that’s it. The hidden column still remains with all of its values. While sharing a file with editing enabled means someone can retrieve your hidden values using simple methods. So, don’t forget to lock your file before sharing.


Conclusion

Now we know the methods to unhide columns, it would encourage you to take the benefit of Excel’s hide and unhide feature more confidently. Any questions or suggestions don’t forget to put them in the comment box below.


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Al Arafat Siddique

Al Arafat Siddique

Hello! This is Arafat. Here I'm researching Microsoft Excel. I did my graduation from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology(BUET). My interest in data science and machine learning allured me to play with data and find solutions to real-life problems. I want to explore this data-driven world and make innovative solutions.

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