It can be difficult to browse through hundreds of old emails just to find the one you need. So try searching Gmail instead.

Use the search box

The search box is at the top of your Gmail screen. Simply type the word you're looking for in the search box and click the  magnifying icon. For example, if you're looking for a message with the word "shopping", type in the word shopping.

Refine your search

If you're having trouble finding the result you want, you can refine your search by clicking the arrow in the search box, and entering your search in the appropriate fields (or use our advanced operators).

Gmail Search Box

Gmail advanced search box

Gmail doesn't recognize special search characters like [ ], ( ), &, #, *, and currency symbols. Gmail will also try to search attachments so your results may show items without the search terms highlighted.

Search suggestions

To help you search faster, Gmail suggests search terms as you begin to type. These search terms are based on information from Gmail, such as messages, contacts, labels, or past searches.

To improve the search suggestions, your Gmail searches will be stored in your Web History if you have it turned on. You can pause or remove your information at any time. Learn more about Web History.

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