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How to Add a Line Break in WordPress (New Line Spacing)

Do you want to add a line break in WordPress, or adjust the line spacing between blocks? In most Word processors, you can easily add extra blank line space by pressing the enter key a few times. You can also create double spaced line after paragraphs from the formatting options. However, WordPress block editor doesn’t have those buttons. In this article, we will show you how to easily add a line break in WordPress.

Adding single or double line spacing in WordPress

Before we start, it’s important to know that line spacing is controlled by the WordPress theme you use. We will show you how to add space between blocks in the block editor, and then we will cover how to change the line spacing in your theme if you’re not happy with the results.

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Adding Double Line Space Between Blocks

When you press the ‘Enter’ key on your keyboard to add a line break, WordPress visual editor considers it as a new paragraph. This means that it will automatically add double line space granted that your theme has the styling for it (all good WordPress themes do).

So simply go in and press Enter after the line and then type something else in the next line.

Adding double line spacing in WordPress

By simply doing that, based on your theme styling, you should see a clear distinction between paragraphs (i.e double line spacing).

Double line space added to create paragraph in WordPress

Adding Single Line Space

Now if you are writing something like an address, then you probably want it to be single spaced instead of double spaced.

Single Space Preview

In this case, you need to press SHIFT + ENTER key.

This will tell WordPress that you want to start a new line inside an existing paragraph thus it needs single line spacing vs double line spacing.

Modifying the Line height and Spacing

Sometimes even when you add the proper line spacing in the editor, it doesn’t display the way you want it to in your theme.

There are two ways to fix it:

  1. Using a plugin (the easy way)
  2. Manually with CSS code (more advanced)

Let’s take a look at the easy method first.

Adding Line Spacing Using a Plugin

If you want to make style changes to your theme without having to learn code, using a plugin like CSS Hero is the best way to do that.

CSS Hero makes it easy to change the design of your WordPress site without knowing any code.

Add paragraph spacing in WordPress with CSS Hero

You can see more details in our full CSS Hero review.

If you want to make bigger changes to your theme, like moving a sidebar or adding a footer, then a drag and drop page builder plugin would be a better option. A page builder plugin would also let you make small tweaks like changing font colors or adding line breaks in WordPress.

Don’t want to use a plugin, or just need to make this one change? Then the manual CSS code option might be best for you.

Changing Paragraph Spacing Manually With CSS Code

To add line breaks manually without a plugin, you need to add some CSS to your theme.

CSS is basically like the formatting feature in Microsoft Word. Instead of clicking buttons, you will be writing some plain CSS code. It is not as scary as some beginners may think. CSS is very easy to understand if you are just following instructions.

To add custom CSS to your theme, you need to visit Appearance » Customize page. This will launch the WordPress theme customizer where you need to click on the ‘Additional CSS’ tab from the left column.

Adding your custom CSS

In the custom CSS box you need to add the following CSS code:

.post p{line-height: 1.5em;} 

Adding custom CSS to increase line height

The CSS rule shown above will change the line spacing of paragraph content to 1.5em. Em is a unit of width for typography. We are using .post class which WordPress automatically adds to the content area of all posts to make sure it only affects posts and not paragraphs used elsewhere.

Now this only changes the spacing of single spacing. If you want to change the paragraph spacing in WordPress (i.e double spacing), then you would need to add padding.

.post p { 
line-height: 1.5em;
padding-bottom: 15px;
} 

Feel free to adjust the numbers to meet your needs.

We hope this article helped you add a line break in WordPress. You may also want to see our tips on mastering the WordPress visual editor to write content more efficiently in WordPress.

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Reader Interactions

98 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. I finally figured out the shift-enter thing for poetry single space lines, but when the post is published and emailed to followers, it loses formatting and all the lines run together. How do I fix that?

    • You would want to check with the tool being used to send the notification for the styling for fixing that issue.

      Admin

  2. Thanks for the explanation. One question though. How can i do the same thing on a smartphone. I’m editing my blog on the way and do not have a laptop available. i tried to do shift enter but that did not work

    • Due to the limitations of mobile, you would likely need to use the CSS method.

      Admin

    • If you’re using a page builder plugin they may have a different method for the single/double line spacing. Otherwise, it could be a plugin/theme conflict where you would need to disable your plugins and/or swap your theme to check

      Admin

  3. I would like to reduce the spacing between normal paragraph lines — IMHO, there is too much white space by default. I’d also like to add a half line at the end of a paragraph, rather than a full line: WordPress by default seems to just do the equivalent of a double carriage return which is rather twentieth century and doesn’t emulate what Word can do. Any ideas?

    • You would want to reach out to the support for your specific theme and they should be able to tell you what CSS needs to be added to reduce your line spacing :)

      Admin

  4. God bless you! I’m so grateful for you posting this with the CSS! Who knew that’s all it took for me to change the spacing! I’ve been looking for something like this for a long time! Thank you so much!

  5. I am using the “shift” enter method but it does not allow for different size font when I do. Is there a work around?

  6. I don’t have Additional CSS. I’ve tried all sorts of other ways to alter the paragraph spacing but nothing works, looks a real mess. Help please!!!

  7. Thank you for the help. I have been looking all over the place, and wanted to do it with a plug-in. You made it so easy. Again, thank you very much.

  8. Hello! I want to have a simple spacing between my paragraphs and even after pressing enter (for the double space), when I preview the draft nothing has changed (it’s still all one paragraph). Could anyone help?

  9. Hi
    I would like to modifying the Line height and Spacing. However there is no ‘editor’ icon ( Appearance » Editor) from theme’s CSS file.
    So, what can I do?
    Thank you for your reply!

  10. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    I was in another html editor and could not figure out how to do single spacing.

    You saved the day! :)

  11. Brilliant and what an eternal lifesaver.

    I was struggling with spacing on one of my client sites and absolutely amazing that you had the exact answer almost at your finger tips. I am now becoming a permanent subscriber

  12. I am using the Pilcrow theme and I have no idea how to make the double space between paragraphs happen. Sometimes it happens in my posts but sometimes it doesn’t. When I look in the HTML file I don’t see any post p or padding. I only see the end result of what the post will look like and thats when I know the double spacing didnt work. Can I still go back and re-edit and fix it? Last but not least where you say to go from the appearance to editor menus i dont have those options.
    I have under appearance the following options: themes, customize, widgets, menus, header, background, AMP, Theme Options, Mobile.
    Please help.

    • Hey LR,

      You can add the CSS by visting Appearance->Customize and then clicking on the Additional CSS tab in customizer. See our guide on how to add custom CSS in WordPress.

      If you believe it to be a theme issue, then try temporarily switching to a default WordPress theme. If the issue disappears, then you can ask your theme developer for support.

      Admin

  13. My theme is broken, as in it doesn’t have the double spacing by default. The theme is stuck on the shift+enter mode in other words. So in relation to the following code:

    .post p {
    line-height: 1.5em;
    padding-bottom: 15px;
    }

    Is 15px a normal default double space? How many pixels should it be by default? Also doesn’t it matter where I put this code? Thanx!

  14. Thank you for the tip on the shift + enter. I never knew this for years. Your site has always been a rescue when I get stuck.

  15. Hello: How do you get custom line spacing (say, 1.5em) for one instance on one page instead of changing the entire theme CSS? I see two other people have asked the same thing with no response, at least not that I found. Thanks!

  16. Shift+Enter to avoid huge gap between lines in wysywig tinye mce editor in wordpress. Works !!!! Awesome!

  17. How about simply adding some text and changing the text colour to white (if the background is white)? This should make it possible to create and customise line spaces much easier (unless, of course, the background is a picture of something that cannot be matched with font colour).

  18. Hi WPBeginner staff,

    I have a different question. I use Visual Composer and have added many Separator with Text dividers between my section headings on my homepage. I would like to make those text headings also be a link to that section.
    However everytime I add the link I lose the section identifying text that I had in the separator and it’s magically replaced with the default text saying “TITLE”.

    To try to make it a link I am adding a the linking code inside this bracket:
    [vc_text_separator title=”1950s CARS”]

    I am scratching my head so hard that I think I’m bald. Any help will get you a lifetime of gratitude!!!

    Thankyou,
    Mike

  19. I am using the WordPress ‘Divi’ theme and found that if you press enter (or shift + enter) twice, in order to create a larger space, it is ignored. To get round this press enter once, type a character on the line, (it does not matter what), highlight it and change the font colour of the character to white and then press enter again; this results in the desired space between lines without having to edit the theme. The same applies to extra spaces in a line; enter as many characters as desired, highlight them and change their font colour to white and then carry on in the desired font colour.

  20. THANK YOU!! I Love you guys! So glad I found this site! I’ve almost literally been banging my head against the wall. If I knew how to insert emojis, this post would be covered with hearts and smiley faces. :-)

    • P.S. ~ HA! I did NOT know that my little colon and parentheses would actually turn into a smiley. LOL

  21. Oh yeah! You have just helped me solve a problem (forced single space paragraphs) that has vexed me for years!

  22. I am a subscriber to WP Beginner.
    I had a question concerning entering Engineering data for my product on my site. Spacing in the tables appeared too large on the page. I searched WordPress support and all I saw was snippy responses to the question of single line spacing.

    Your the first to answer the question, and it obviously was correct. Thank You.

    Sincerely,

    Dave

  23. What about on Android. The latest update has forced a double spacing (new paragraph). Not very good for poetry writers. Is there any way to revert it back to single?

  24. I use Omega Theme and the control/enter does not work. Is there something else I can do. I cannot find post.p in the CSS file.

  25. Thanks for the “shift” and enter for single line spacing as I’ve wanted to figure this out for years … and never got around to finding the solution.

  26. I’m searching everywhere for an answer … when I add a in the text editor, it is removed in the visual editor. Drives me crazy. Does wpbeginner have a recommendation?

    Should I add a plug-in to stop this?

    I tried a plugin years ago, but I had to go back and re-format every post.

    Any link with tutorial or advice is greatly appreciated!

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