macOS: Using the Text “Transformations” Feature

1 minute read
| Quick Tip

A lot of the Mac’s programs (such as Pages, Mail, Safari, and TextEdit) have a built-in “Transformations” option, which is a little-known way that you can switch accidentally capitalized text to lowercase, for example. For the applications that support it, the choice is under the Edit menu:

macOS Edit Transformations menu option in TextEdit

To use this, then, first select some text that’s in the wrong case.

TextEdit showing text in all caps before applying Transformations

Apply the change by picking your desired option from Edit > Transformations as shown in my first screenshot. Below I’ve changed that all-caps text to lowercase:

Transformations changing text to Lowercase in TextEdit

This text is a lie now.

You can do the opposite, of course, or you could also pick Edit > Transformations > Capitalize, which’ll make the first letter of each word a capital.

Transformations converting to Capitalized Text in TextEdit

So many lies in this tip.

Pretty cool! I use this most often when I’m editing other people’s work, as I don’t tend to get all free and loose with my own Caps Lock key. Maybe that indicates I’m not spending enough time ranting about politics on the Internet, though. I don’t know.

5 Comments Add a comment

  1. Lee Dronick

    I wish that it had a “Make sentence case” so that only the first letter of the first word of a sentence is in uppercase.

    We could probably also use a text abbreviation to English feature. 😀

  2. jworrall

    Thanks for pointing that out! A lot of little things like that are helpful on occasion but I don’t go looking for them.

  3. fultonkbd

    I never knew text “transformation” existed. I have always used Automator scripts placed in the service menu for these functions. Interesting to see Apple now has some of them built in.

  4. BruceL

    Thank you Melissa for such a useful tip. I always look forward to your Quick Tips. This is a tip that I will use several times a week.

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