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Rotate Text 180° Within Shapes in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows

Learn how to rotate text 180° within a shape in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows. It's not as easy to achieve this trick as you may have initially thought.


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Product/Version: PowerPoint 2016 for Windows

OS: Microsoft Windows 7 and higher






If you have worked aplenty with text in PowerPoint, you must be aware that you cannot rotate text within a shape by 180°. What's surprising is that you can rotate text by 90° and 270° within a shape, but not by 180°! But why would you need upside-down text that is rotated 180°? Many users do need this upside-down text to explain advanced concepts.

Tip: This technique is not limited to shapes; it works with all text containers including text boxes and placeholders. Although this tutorial pertains to shapes, there's no reason why you cannot follow the same steps to rotate all other types of text containers by 180 degrees in the same way.

Look at the graphic that you see towards the left in Figure 1, below. Notice that this graphic contains four Teardrop shapes. Now if you were to rotate individual Teardrop shapes so that they can form a flower, then you will end up with something similar to the middle graphic within Figure 1. Clearly the text within the shapes needs to be rotated as well. That's easier said than done! We rotated the text but were only able to successfully rotate text for 2 Teardrop shapes (90° and 270°). And one of the Teardrops was fine to start with, so only the Teardrop shape highlighted in red within the rightmost graphic of Figure 1 has a problem! In this tutorial, we'll show you a step by step procedure that will allow you to rotate text 180° within a shape in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows.

Sample shapes show various text rotation
Figure 1: Sample shapes show various text rotation

Follow these steps to learn more in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows:

  1. Insert a shape on the slide. For this tutorial, we choose a Teardrop shape (see Figure 2). Also, type in some text within the inserted shape, as shown in Figure 2.
  2. Text within a Teardrop shape
    Figure 2: Text within a Teardrop shape
  3. Now, right-click the shape and from the contextual menu, select the Format Shape option to open the Format Shape Task Pane, as shown Figure 3. Within the Format Shape task pane, make sure you select the Text Options tab (highlighted in red within Figure 3). Then, within the Textbox option (highlighted in blue within Figure 3), select the Text Direction down-arrow and select the Rotate all text 90° option (highlighted in green within Figure 3) from the drop-down menu.
  4. Format Shape Task Pane
    Figure 3: Format Shape Task Pane
  5. Note: Learn more about the text direction options in our Align Text within Shapes / Text Boxes in PowerPoint 2016 tutorial, where you can explore step 2B.
  6. This will Rotate the text within your shape to 90°, as shown in Figure 4.
  7. Text rotated to 90°
    Figure 4: Text rotated to 90°
  8. Now, flip the shape horizontally. To do so, access the Arrange drop-down menu and choose the Rotate | Flip Horizontal option, as shown in Figure 5. Learn more about flipping shapes in our Flip Shapes in PowerPoint 2016 tutorial.
  9. Flip shape horizontally
    Figure 5: Flip shape horizontally
  10. Figure 6 below shows the shape after it has been flipped horizontally.
  11. Shape flipped horizontally
    Figure 6: Shape flipped horizontally
  12. Select the shape and rotate the shape to 90°. To do so, access the Arrange drop-down menu and choose the Rotate | Rotate Right 90° option, as shown in Figure 7.
  13. Rotate Right 90° option
    Figure 7: Rotate Right 90° option
  14. This will rotate the text within the shape to 180°, as shown in Figure 8.
  15. Text within shape rotated to 180°
    Figure 8: Text within shape rotated to 180°
  16. Save your presentation often.

See Also:

Text in Shapes: Rotate Text 180° Within Shapes in PowerPoint (Index Page)

Rotate Text 180° Within Shapes in PowerPoint 2016 for Mac
Rotate Text 180° Within Shapes in PowerPoint 2013 for Windows
Rotate Text 180° Within Shapes in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac

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