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Gmail Lets You Send HTML Email

By April 4, 2005

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Now when you sign up for Gmail not only will you get something different along with 2GB of space for your email, you will now be able to send HTML formatted email. No need to know HTML to do it either.

Creating an HTML fomatted newsletter has never been easier. With this new email tool from Gmail you can create HTML formatted newsletters without knowing HTML.

All you have to do is click on the "Compose Mail" button, just like you normally would to open a new message you want to send. When the page opens click on where it says "Rich formatting". A whole new list of buttons will show up that you can use to create your HTML formatted email without ever having to actually use HTML.

Change backgroung colors and text colors. Make things bold, italic or underlined. Add hyperlinks or bulleted and numbered lists. Change your font styles and font sizes. Indent and align your paragraphs.

May 2, 2006 at 4:54 am
(1) bert says:

link for tool doesn’t work…

March 26, 2007 at 12:43 pm
(2) Drew says:

Is there a way to put in the actual html? I’ve already made the email in an html editor now I want to send it. It uses tables and stuff to look more pro and I really don’t think I could make this with the crappy gmail editor.

Please advise! I’m in trouble here… might have to ditch gmail my one and only email!!!

March 26, 2007 at 1:09 pm
(3) Lin says:

You can’t use html tags in gmail but you can use the text editor to do it for you.

If you really want to use your own html what you can do is set up your gmail address to send from another email program (ie. outlook express) on your computer and send from there.

February 16, 2008 at 12:53 am
(4) camping says:

I couldn’t figure out how to use html in outlook express either. Other than an attachment.

May 28, 2008 at 10:57 am
(5) babak says:

tnx it’s just what i was searching for.

May 30, 2008 at 4:55 am
(6) Alexey says:

The best russian site here!
Plese visit our site!

May 30, 2008 at 6:33 am
(7) Alexey says:

The best russian site here! http://km.ru Plese visit our site!

June 12, 2008 at 12:43 pm
(8) Jim Morrissett says:

Unable to find “Rich Format”

July 7, 2008 at 5:10 am
(9) Jon says:

Jim, the rich formatting option is on by default these days. If you hit the “Plain text” link above the composition area, you’ll see that you can toggle modes.

July 17, 2008 at 9:10 am
(10) Ivan says:

Well, the article is a lil rusty already…but it will help if you tell the masses what are the requirements for Gmail to show correctly HTML emails, as it ignores any stylesheets that aren’t declared directly within the elements. In other words:


So if you declared styles in the section – forget about Gmail displaying it. At least that’s my observation.

July 23, 2008 at 11:20 pm
(11) Drew Faber says:

I don’t see a way to embed an image. There are no insert image or edit HTML buttons.

September 24, 2008 at 9:02 am
(12) Karen Rice says:

This isn’t really HTML at all, it’s just Rich Text Formatting.

I found this blog thinking I could find a way to create my own HTML formatted email “stationery” but I guess not.

September 26, 2008 at 2:04 pm
(13) Tom Hart says:

Yes, this is very misleading. Some limited interface to create some rich text is hardly sending html via email.

As others have noted, I think the only way to really send an html message via gmail is to use a native mail client (like Thunderbird) that connects to gamil via SMTP or POP.

October 2, 2008 at 2:25 pm
(14) Marlene says:

This is WYSIWYG, not HTML. Subtle but important difference.

October 27, 2008 at 6:28 am
(15) Nostalgia says:


to compose a mail with your own html formatting :

1-> compose you mail, using any html editor, save file as .html
2-> open .html file with Firefox or IE
3-> select Edit>Select all or Ctrl+A to select all of your messages.
4-> paste in compose window gmail. Voila!

ps: Not working in IE? Get rid of IE asap, switch to Firefox. IE sucks!

October 28, 2008 at 2:18 am
(16) sina says:

how many send Html Mail with gmail in a day ?

October 29, 2008 at 12:47 am
(17) Amiya says:

Fist make an HTML file
Use Google toolbar to sent this.
It has button sent to -> Gmail

October 29, 2008 at 12:49 am
(18) Amiya says:

First make an HTML file
Use Google toolbar to sent this.
It has button sent to -> Gmail

November 7, 2008 at 12:28 pm
(19) Steve says:

Nostalgia is right. The BEST way to set up and send an HTML email is to write the code with an editor, save it as an HTML file, run it, Copy All, and paste into a gMail email. Zero problems.

November 7, 2008 at 6:50 pm
(20) Klaus says:

I got the copy from Firefox and paste into gmail, but my images are not getting copied. Does anybody know how to fix that? Thanks!

November 7, 2008 at 8:27 pm
(21) Dom says:

Klaus, I think you need to load your pictures onto the web and I suspect your pictures are in the hard drive.

Try sign up for a free google site at “sites.google.com”. Then learn to upload pictures there (it is free). When your pictures/photos are uploaded, copy the links.

Next Steps : When you are in the HTML editor, insert the pictures using the link above i.e. pictures are being inserted from the web vs the hard drive.

Now you will be able to cut and paste into Gmail and all your pictures will appear (cuz they are being read from the web). Hope this helps.

December 1, 2008 at 2:06 am
(22) ramadhani says:

thank you nostalgia, seems you clear everyone’s problem

December 8, 2008 at 3:53 pm
(23) kaz says:

Funny how a useless blog post ends up with a useful solution in the comments. Thanks guys.

December 17, 2008 at 10:36 am
(24) Adam says:

it does not work unless you want to hand code it all into the composition area..It does work if you copy and past html into compose area.

December 23, 2008 at 5:55 am
(25) serdar says:
January 6, 2009 at 11:09 am
(26) Ellen says:

I did what Nostalgia wrote about creating html viewing it and copying and pasting. However I wanted to have a link to a section of the email. It didn’t work in gmail from firefox on a mac. Any suggestions

January 7, 2009 at 4:48 pm
(27) kiwiwiki says:

link doesnt work, are there other options?

January 9, 2009 at 7:22 pm
(28) matt says:


thaaaaaaaaaaank yooooouuuuu

such a simple point, but no one else was saying it!

February 14, 2009 at 7:10 pm
(29) Sudipta says:

Thanks Linda for putting up the article.

Thanks Nostalgia, for giving such and effective and easy solution. Now I am really feeling nostalgic :-)

March 31, 2009 at 8:24 am
(30) bboy says:



Thank you so much for saving me and so many others alot of misery.

March 31, 2009 at 9:03 am
(31) justbridge says:

either I am really stupid (but actually I don’t really believe that) or that copy and paste stuff just doesn’t work. I don’t even understand how it ever could work.
you just can’t copy text and hope it to become html …
I do not believe in magic …

April 1, 2009 at 12:43 pm
(32) innessperet says:

when you use the copy function in a web browser (firefox, anyway), it copies the html mark-up, not just the text, so when you copy it into an editor that uses html, it retains the formatting (try copying your favorite website and pasting into MS Word)

the copy and paste works great, as long as everything is in 1 html file (no linked stylesheets or images)

thanks, Nostalgia

June 20, 2009 at 12:14 pm
(33) Tunde Opaleye says:

Thanks nostalgia…

I guess u’ll have to make sure you’re pasting from firefox into an html composition (so even if ua using gmail it has to be not plain text composition)

also note worthy is that external stylesheets won’t work (@ least for now). So inline style sheets should do the trick.

for the ‘geeky ones’ this link may provide even more info… http://www.sitepoint.com/article/code-html-email-newsletters/

July 6, 2009 at 1:02 pm
(34) lina says:

thank u very much, this works awesome!!!!

July 7, 2009 at 11:44 am
(35) Nature says:

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July 7, 2009 at 11:47 am
(36) Nature says:

My Site Getting Improvement See This Improved Site

July 21, 2009 at 10:53 am
(37) Chris says:

Are you guys emailing yourself to test? Everything looks PERFECT in the gmail editor with the copy-paste, but a LOT of stuff gets completely cut in the final email when it’s received, all my images and any embeds (look at actual original SMTP markup and IMG and stuff are missing).

August 10, 2009 at 8:14 pm
(38) Averi says:

Thanks Nostalgia!! That is such an easy solution… yet I have spent hours trying to find a more difficult explanation. :) Thanks for the help!!

August 31, 2009 at 10:56 pm
(39) Webmaster , Tour Operator of Bangladesh says:

Thank you Nostalgia for your useful comment.

September 8, 2009 at 3:57 pm
(40) Joe says:

This is the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen. Like I couldn’t figure out how to click a button. This is absolutely not helpful.

September 10, 2009 at 12:33 pm
(41) Jorge says:

I composed an email in dreamweaver that included a check box. I emailed it to myself and the check box works in the original email but if you hit reply, the check box is no longer checked and remains “uncheckable”.

What to do?

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