# How to create zebra stripes with conditional formatting – Best article

In this video, we’ll look at how to use conditional formatting to shade every other row in a table. This is sometimes called “zebra striping”.

In this spreadsheet, we have a table of employees with a minimal amount of formatting. To get shading on every other row, I could just convert this table to a proper Excel Table using Control + T, then customize the format as desired.

This is a good option, especially if you want the table for other reasons as well.

However, you can also apply dynamic zebra striping with conditional formatting and a formula.

The classic formula for zebra striping uses the MOD function. MOD takes a number and a divisor, and then returns the remainder. So, if I use the ROW function, without a reference, to get number of the current ROW, and then use 2 as the divisor, the MOD function returns zero when the row is an even number and 1 if not.

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If I copy this formula across multiple cells, you can see we get rows of ones and zeros. We can use these results directly in a conditional formatting rule, since 1 and zero are equivalent to TRUE and FALSE.

So, to add the striping, I can just create a new conditional format rule based on a formula…then add the formula, and set a fill color.

If you’d rather shade even rows, just add “= 0” to the formula to switch the logic.

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In later versions of Excel, you can use two special functions, ISODD, and ISEVEN in conditional formatting rules.

So, instead of the MOD formula, I could just use ISEVEN with ROW.

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To shade odd rows, I just need to replace ISEVEN with ISODD.

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If you want to shade columns instead of rows, you can just substitute the COLUMN function for the ROW function.

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Of course, you could add more than one rule, to shade both columns and rows.

Finally, in case you ever want to create a checkerboard effect, you can use ROW and COLUMN together. The formula is simply ROW + COLUMN, wrapped in ISODD or ISEVEN.

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## One Response

1. sex at |

Thanks a lot for the article.Much thanks again. Great.