Outlook 2013 Ribbon Keeps Hiding in Office 365


After playing around with the new (totally disappointing) Outlook 2013 I found that the ribbon would keep hiding.

While that is annoying enough and I wanted to turn it back to how it was by default, what was really ticking me off was that someone else inadvertently made this happen while on my computer and could not tell me what they have done to set it that way.

So I set about working it it.

I couldn’t with out help.

So I set to Google for assistance. Found nothing, hence I’m writing this.


Click a Message in your mail view.

Click HOME (the ribbon should appear)


Then on the far right of the ribbon, is a little drawing pin icon. In this location


That when clicked will turn to the indication above. This pins the ribbon in place.

For the record… I am disappointed by the new Office. There is nothing new that impresses me after 3 years of additional development time, and plenty of little traps like this that just suck time and annoy you!

Watching Microsoft fall from grace by their own hand is slow and painful for all of us, although the future looks a little brighter sinace the removal of Blamer.

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105 thoughts on “Outlook 2013 Ribbon Keeps Hiding in Office 365”

    1. Tell me about it! This is easily the worst update from Microsoft I have had in recent memory. They ditched lots of features I used, and replaced it with loads more crashes and button clicks to do the same thing. Literally no new features I care about…

                  1. To resolve this issue, follow these steps :
                    Exit Outlook.
                    Click Start, click Run, type regedit, and then click OK.
                    Locate the following registry subkey:
                    Right-click the 2.4 registry key, and then select Export. Save the export to your desktop to create a backup.
                    Right-click the 2.4 key again, and then select delete.
                    Start Outlook.
                    The Home ribbon was gone for me too. . . . This resolved it

                1. Nevermind. Now I see the HOME button. Even that menu was hidden. How I got it to appear, I’m not sure.

                2. Robyn Steward

                  My outlook 2013 looks nothing like any of these pictures, except the overall graphic. I have no home button, I have no Ribbon. I cannot even add a delivery receipt. (under my options I only have choices for priorities and rich text plain text edit) It is the suckiest email ever and I want my hotmail back! *hate* I can’t even embed graphics in this stupid email. I have to attach every single stupid thing. Worthless. I thought Gmail at work was bad. This is worse in every single way possible.

                  1. I hope you figured all this out, Robyn. To embed vs attach has to do with the format of the email you’re composing (HTML/Rich text/Plain text). The option to change the format is found on one of the ribbons along the top: Format Text. If you click that and see the ribbon, but the ribbon goes away after, move to the very far right and bottom of the ribbon (any ribbon) and click the tiny thumbtack icon to pin it to stay. As for delivery receipts, etc, look on the Options ribbon. But be reminded when you click File, Outlook takes you to the “backstage view” and you will find “Options” listed near the bottom of the list which is on your left. that’s NOT what I’m talking about. Hit escape or click “File” so you’re back in your email and look up. Horizontally along the top of your email you’ll see Message, Insert, OPTIONS, Format Text, and Review. <– this is the Options to which I refer. Hope this is helpful, because once you get the hang of the "logic of the ribbon" you're life will be changed for the better, I promise!

                3. I have to disagree – I have been using all the new office 2013 applications for months now and love them. Given …. there are quirks like the one that lead me to your page. But on balance it’s been worthwhile for me to move over. I actually think MS has been doing a better job of bring product to market which is more relevant – I mean .. how cut through and creative can you be with a mail client ?. My big MS question mark is over Win 8 – I think there are a number of unfortunate inclusions and omissions which have been frustrating. I really don’t want to be a hater … (being an early adoptor) but man – why no start ? that was not smart.

                  1. I must say they have made a brave attempt, but I personally think they have failed badly. The test for this type of thing, when I think I am being “anti change” is two fold.
                    1. Can I do what I want with less clicks (in Outlook… NO!)
                    2. If I give it to a techno noob (parent / grandparents etc) can they cope alone with it. (Big Fail here)
                    I find I am often struggling to get Outlook to behave. They clearly though a lot about touch, but when I sit to pump email productivity (usually as much as 150-200 a day) who wants to do that on a touch device. So all the new features are lost on me, and there is literally NOTHING that is easier in this 2013 version than the one before, but lots that is missing/impossible or just harder to manage with more clicks to do the same thing.
                    So sure… + for effort, but “F” on productivity.
                    The proof of the pudding is in the eating as they say. I bet that this is the least “picked up” office release of all time!
                    P.S. I think there is a lot that could be done with an email client. I live and breath email/contacts/calendar, I am waiting for that killer app to come and smash this stuff. I can certainly imagine major improvements at the least.

                  2. well you must be the luckiest person using MS2013. Been at this 6 months and it SUCKS. Calendar and contacts, no integration. Mail integrates but ‘misplaces’ emails usually at the wrong time. the ribbon, is a massive pain in the ashh. Tried to go back to Office 2010, but they figured that out as well, no joy. I have MS2013 and Office 365. Sucks and Sucks.

                  3. yea, you probably have a ribbon and home menu unlike many of us. I have no home button, I have no Ribbon. I cannot even add a delivery receipt. (under my options I only have choices for priorities and rich text plain text edit)

                4. Thank you so much, the drawing pin icon thing worked for me – after wasting at least half an hour and getting more and more infuriated!

                  1. When I hit the mail icon (Windows 8) on my computer which takes me to Outlook the only screen that appears is the mail screen. On the right of the screen are the boxes. To the left, already open, are my emails. Never mind the fact that each email I click on opens up and does not give me the option of not opening it, there is absolutely nothing more on the screen. If I want to clear my Junk File or my Deleted File I have to delete every email one by one. Some do not delete but return. The only icons are in the right hand corner…send, reply, and trash. If I do a new email then a few icons pop up on the bottom such as change the font, color, etc. But they don’t hold for each email.
                    What the heck is wrong?

                    1. There are some settings / File / Options / Mail – Just double check that there is nothing strange setup in there.
                      Sorry that you are having the bad experience that I too have had. Outlook 2013 makes Outlook 2010 look like a pleasure!

                      1. I have nothing like this on 2010. It’s terrible. I have a blue ribbon that is it. No help, home, pin, file and tools. I do have reply, forward etc..I can double click and get font and stuff.
                        Please help me I can not find anything on the internet!! I’ve been at it for an hour.

                      2. Totally agree – and thank you to OP for the drawing pin trick.
                        Have used Outlook since it was invented and this implementation is the worst ever.
                        Appalling graphics – and worse, no way to change it.

                      3. Arun Ramachandran

                        How to make Ribbon stay for Outlook 2010.
                        You have to options 1) Hit +
                        2) Click the up arror (^) or down arrow(v) in the top right corner. By the blue .

                      4. In my version of Office, (Office Professional Plus 2010 V.14.0.xxxx) the little down arrow is NOT on the ribbon it self. It is located ABOVE the ribbon way over to the right side next to the blue question mark and directly below the close (“X”) box at top right of window. When i finally found it, the same trick worked to keep the ribbon from vanishing.
                        To find out your outlook/office version:
                        1. click File
                        2. click Help (below on the left hand side, NOT the blue question mark at top right)
                        3. product info will be displayed

                      5. Office CRASH 2013 right in the middle of heavy spread sheet analysis for absolutely no apparent reason. Power pivot interface, fiddled with and dumbed down. loss of features that worked for features that create havoc now that has been embedded in Excel engine….. Microsoft death by version creep

                      6. I cannot find my Ribbon, Home, or anything to help me recall an urgent email!!! I am freaking out, how can I go to File when there is no Ribbon, or find the Ribbon when there is no Home?? I click the picture and my Ribbonless just refreshes; I click the arrows and get more icon options, Outlook, People, Calendar, etc. Can you please help?!

                      7. Thank you! I could not understand why it was constantly hiding. The ribbon was always there until a few days ago, and MS Help was no help at all. Why it “unpinned” in the first place is a mystery—-except it happened right after a Windows update earlier this week.

                      8. Thank you so much for relieving one of my many new irritations that presumably arrive with so-called “Updates”!

                      9. My problem is that none of the tabs are visible when I open outlook 2013 and I always have to Right Click+Restore… THEN I can go and make the Ribbon stick. Such a frustrating to have to do each and every time. I haven’t been able to find out how to make the TAbs visible on each opening.

                      10. Thanks a million! Your tip was extremely helpful! I totally agree about wasting time and how MS should really leave things that work well alone … but then what would all their programmers do to keep occupied?

                      11. I can’t see the pin icon at the right of my Home (as described above). All I have is the up arrow that, when left-clicked, makes the ribbon disappear. When right-clicked it gives me 5 options none of which are to ‘pin’ the ribbon permanently. Any ideas? Am I missing something obvious?

                      12. Robert Birnkmann

                        I sped a couple hundred bucks to get the program, get $100 worth of increased efficiency, and then spend $4,000 of my time trying to navigate my way through junk like this. I am seriously thinking of just moving my entire office and all my people over to Apple.

                        1. As a system admin, and super Windows user.. I can only say “You will love it”. I’m 100% mac for personal use, only drop back to Windows to do admin work. Love it!

                      13. Thanks for this. No easy answer to “What happened to the edit menu? Undo most specifically”. I made my own in the ribbon once I found out how to kee pthe ribbon open.

                      14. I still use Office Professional 2010 (and it sounds like I should be thankful), but had the same problem with the Outlook ribbon mysteriously disappearing. Couldn’t figure it out myself, so I Googled, and the first choice was this solution. It worked exactly as provided. Thanks a lot.

                      15. What a timesaver. Thanks ever so much. My complaint – always – is that developers never test with “newbies.” Hence, they seem to forget to tell us about these tricks/shortcuts/etc.

                      16. Thank you so much. Your post was amazing and clear.I been stuggling for 2 weeks and so frustrated!

                      17. WOW- was bugging me as i inadvertently turned it off and would have never figure it out. Thanks!!!

                      18. Thank you. I can tell you that no one changed my settings to this annoying problem, it must have changed by itself. Microsoft is spooky.
                        Thanks though, it helped me a lot

                      19. Oh man, I can’t believe how easy you made my life with this hot mess. I googled, I tried F1 help and couldn’t find anything.
                        Thank you for sharing.

                      20. I clicked a msg and hit HOME but the Ribbon was still missing. I then clicked Reply but it was still gone. Then I hit FORMAT TEXT and lo, the missing ribbon was there with a nice pin at the far right! I clicked the pin and my kissing ribbon has returned for good. Thanks a million for pointing me in the right direction and a raspberry to Microsoft for not including this in its pathetic Help. Dave

                      21. Thank you thank you thank you! This has been driving me crazy!!! (although it’s only been 3 days since it got turned off)

                      22. Thank you for the pin trick. I did something which changed my settings and for the life of me I couldn’t figure out how to pin the home task bar as it used to be. I’m most grateful.

                      23. This seems only to pin the menu there for as long as you have the program open, but every night I close all my programs and shut down my computer, and every morning I come back to find my ribbon unpinned again. Any thoughts?

                          1. So have I, at home at least, but work is wedded to the Microsoft Corporate Beast so we’re stuck with it. However, I just wanted to record that your tip helped, and I totally agree with the frustrations you list, and if I could go completely Mac I would!

                        1. David Inquieti

                          We are on Office365 and what a load of s***e that is. The ribbon keeps disappearing in Outlook and when I do get it to appear there is no pin on the right to keep it there. Selecting text in a Word document is so slow and before you know it you have selected text that you didn’t want to select.
                          The worst thing is copying between Word and Excel or Excel and Word, you invariably get the good old Not Responding message!

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