How to do Subscript in Google Docs

The layout of a document is almost as important as its content, as we always highlight it in our guides. For this reason, knowing how to properly format texts is crucial and all the small details make the difference. In this guide we’ll show you how to do subscript in Google Docs.

Personally, I always forget how to do subscript in Google Docs. It’s just one of those things that you never really use, until you have to. And at that point you’ve got to figure out how to do it! It’s very easy to do, but you’ve got to remember it!

In this article, you will find:

  • When to Use Subscript in Google Docs
  • How to Do Subscript in Google Docs
    • Subscript in Google Docs: Main Procedure
    • Subscript in Google Docs: Shortcut
  • Conclusion

When to Use Subscript in Google Docs

Subscript is a part of the text that for some specific reason appears under the main text line. 

Subscripts are mainly used in sciences and maths. A common example of subscript is the chemical formula of water: H2O.

That small 2 in H2O is a subscript. In this case, it’s useful to explain that in the water molecule there are two hydrogen atoms.

How to Do Subscript in Google Docs

The procedure to do subscript in Google Docs is very similar to the one for using superscript in Google Docs.

Google Docs allows you to very easily use subscripts in your text. Specifically, there are two different methods to do so. We’re going to show you the regular procedure to use subscripts in Google Docs and a shortcut

Main Procedure

The Subscript mode can be activated in two different ways. You can either decide to regularly type your text and then turn it into a subscript, or you can directly type it as a subscript.

First of all, let’s localise the Subscript button. To find it, click Format in the top menu, then hoover Text. A dropdown menu appears on screen and the Subscript function is also there.

Once you’ve found the Subscript button, it’s time to work on the text.

Let’s assume you want to type the chemical formula of water: H2O.

All you’ve got to do is type “H2O”, highlight the number 2 and go to Format, Text, Subscript. The number 2 will automatically turn into a subscript.

Alternatively, you can type “H”, then go to Format, Text, Subscript, and type “2”. Then, again Format, Text, Subscript to leave the subscript mode and type O.

Basically, you get to use the Subscript button as you’d use the Bold button or the Italic button. It’s just another way to format text.

Subscript Shortcut

You must know that there’s also a very handy shortcut to activate the subscript mode.

Most of the time, people just forget about it, as it’s not very common to use subscripts in text. However, if you’ve been working on scientific projects this shortcut could make your job a lot easier. The whole Top Menu, Format, Text, Subscript can be replaced simply by hitting Ctrl+, (Control + Comma) on your keyboard (Cmd+, on a Mac device).


We’ve just shown you how to do subscript in Google Docs. The procedure is very easy, but since subscripts are not very common, people forget it all the time. Hopefully this guide helped you to quickly recall it.

Make sure to pay attention to all of the small details when you work on a project, as they really make the difference.

Quicktip: If you enjoyed this article, you might also be interested in knowing How to Change Margins in Google Docs.