Canva is a blogger’s dream tool – in fact, I don’t think I know a single blogger who doesn’t use it!

If you’re a fan of this graphic design software but don’t yet know how to highlight text in Canva, keep on reading. 

But first: if you’re a beginner blogger and not using Canva already, sign up here for the free version. It’ll change the game!

Highlighting text in a different colour really helps your designs to stand out and puts an emphasis on important information.

As someone who frequently uses Canva (like, literally ten times a day), I can tell you that text highlighting is a super easy process that can be done in just a few clicks. 

There are a couple of different ways to highlight text in Canva:

  • The first method is using the ‘Effects’ tool
  • The other is using shapes to highlight text. 

We’ll delve further into each below. 

Psst! Stick around to the end to receive my FREE Canva Pinterest Templates!

Whether you’re designing a social media post, graphics, or Pinterest pins – any and all Canva projects really – highlighting text will help you create a more visually aesthetic design that shouts your message loud and clear.

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How to highlight text in Canva Pinterest Pin

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How to Highlight Text in Canva – Step by Step

The text highlight feature on Canva is exceptionally useful for any content creator, as long as you know how. So let’s get into the nitty gritty of it… well actually it’s very simple so let’s get into the quick and simple steps! 

Step 1: Open up Canva and start creating a new design or open an existing one. For the purpose of this tutorial, I’m going to share images of a Pinterest template design I already created. 

Step 2: Add a text box to your design by clicking on the ‘Text‘ tool in the left-hand menu and selecting ‘Add a heading‘, ‘Add a subheading‘, or ‘Add a little bit of body text‘.

Alternatively, you can just press ‘T‘ on your keyboard to quickly add a text box (don’t you love shortcuts?).

Screenshot of a heading text on a Canva Pinterest template

Step 3: Type in whatever text you want to highlight into the text box.

Step 4: Here’s where we begin adding the highlight text effects. With the text box selected (just click on it until you see the box surround it) click on the ‘Effects‘ button in the top menu.

Screenshot of Canva effects and background - how to highlight text in Canva

Step 5: From the dropdown options, choose ‘Background‘ (you may need to scroll down a little).

Step 6: To change the colour of the text from the default colour, scroll down a little more and choose your preferred colour swatch or enter a hex code.

Once you’ve chosen your text colour, you have the option to adjust the opacity and blur of the highlight by using the sliders below the colour options. This will let you create a subtle or bold highlight depending on your specific design needs.

Screenshot of changing background colour on highlight in Canva

The highlight colour you choose will only apply to the selected text box. If you want to highlight various text boxes with the same colour, you’ll need to repeat the steps for each text box.

Step 7: Adjust the size of your highlight by dragging the sliders or entering a value in the ‘Width‘ and ‘Height‘ fields. This will also adjust the font size. 

And that’s it! You now have a highlighted text box (or a few) in your Canva design. 

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How to add just a small section of text in Canva

So we’ve gone through how to highlight a full piece of text, but what if you just want to highlight one or two words in a sentence?

This can also be done easily, but you’ll need to follow the following steps…

Let’s assume you already have your text box created (steps 1 to 3 above). 

The first step is to click on the ‘Elements‘ tab on the left hand menu. Next find the ‘Lines and Shapes‘ heading and select a square shape. 

Screenshot of adding square shape to design in Canva

This will place a square directly onto your design – most likely not in the right place. 

You can then drag the square to the text you want to highlight, drag it to reshape it to a rectangle if necessary. 

Screenshot of adjusting shape to text size in Canva

Next up, you can click on the box and go to the colour option on the top menu to choose your desired colour – preferably from your own branded colour palette. 

At this stage, if your ‘highlight’ is on top of your text rather than highlighting from behind, you’ll need to click on the coloured box to select it and click the ‘Position‘ button on the top menu. This will bring up another menu on the left-hand side, where you can choose ‘backwards’ to move the box to behind the text. 

And viola! You have a small section of text highlighted within your design. 

Removing Highlights

If you added some highlight to your text in Canva but later decide that you don’t want it anymore, you can easily get rid of it. Here’s how:

Step 1: Select the text box with the highlighted text and click on the ‘Effects‘ tab in the top menu.

Step 2: Click on ‘Background‘ in the left menu and then choose the ‘None’ option. This will remove the highlight.

If you have multiple highlights in your design, you can click and drag to select all the text boxes with highlights and repeat the above two steps. 

Removing highlights in Canva is just as quick and easy as adding them (if not easier) so just follow the steps above and your design will be highlight-free in no time at all!


How to highlight text in Canva Pinterest Pin

Overall, I find the different methods of text highlighting with Canva to be super easy and intuitive to use and I hope you do too!

It’s a great way to draw attention to important information in your graphics and make them pop out above your competitors. 


How do I highlight text in Canva?

To highlight text in Canva, you’ll either select a text box and use the ‘Effects‘ option or use a shape to create a highlighter effect if it’s just a single word rather than the entire text box.

Can I use a highlighter tool in Canva?

Canva doesn’t actually have a dedicated highlighter tool, but you can either use the ‘Effects‘ option or shapes to create a highlight effect. 

Do I need Canva Pro to highlight text in Canva?

No, you won’t need a pro Canva account in order to highlight text – all Canva users can simply use the free version. 

What are the steps to underline text in Canva?

To underline text in Canva, simply select the text you want to underline and click on the ‘U‘ icon in the text toolbar. This will add an underline to the selected text. If you want to add a fancier underline effect, go to the ‘Elements‘ tab on the left-hand menu and type ‘underline‘ in the search bar. You can then place one of these underline options under specific text. 

How can I change the background colour of text in Canva?

If you need to change the background colour of text in Canva, select the text box and click on the ‘Background‘ tab in the text toolbar. You can then choose one of your brand colours or upload one of your own images to use as the background of the text box.

Can you highlight an image in Canva?

You can highlight an image in Canva. By placing a shape over the image and then adjusting the shape’s colour and transparency, you can create a highlight effect. Or you also use the ‘Blur‘ option to create a subtle highlight effect.

How do I highlight text on the Canva mobile app?

If you’re using a mobile device and want to highlight text, you can select the text you want to highlight and tap on the ‘Style‘ tab on the bottom toolbar. Then choose a colour or gradient to use as the background of the text box. You can also adjust the transparency of the background to create a highlight effect.

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