A watermark is text or an image that appears either in front of or behind existing document content, like a stamp. For example, you could apply a “Confidential” watermark to pages with sensitive information. You can add multiple watermarks to one or more PDFs, but you must add each watermark separately. You can specify the page or range of pages on which each watermark appears.

Note:

Unlike a stamp, a watermark is integrated into PDF pages as a fixed element. A stamp is a type of PDF comment, which others reading the PDF can open to display a text annotation, move, change, or delete.

Before and After adding a Watermark in Acrobat
Before and after adding a watermark

Add or replace a watermark, with an open document

  1. Choose Tools > Edit PDF > Watermark > Add.

  2. (Optional) To apply the watermark selectively to individual pages, click Page Range Options. Then specify a page range and choose a Subset option, as needed.

  3. Specify the watermark:
    • To reuse a watermark and watermark options that you saved in an earlier session, select it from the Saved Settings menu.

    • To create a text watermark, select Text, and type the text in the box. Adjust the text formatting options as needed.

    • To use an image as a watermark, select File. Then click Browse and select the image file. If the file has multiple pages with images, specify the Page Number you want.

    Note:

    Only PDF, JPEG, and BMP images can be used as watermarks.

  4. To change the size of an image watermark, do one of the following:
    • To resize the watermark in relation to the original image file size, enter a percentage in the Absolute Scale option (in the Source area of the dialog box).

    • To resize the watermark in relation to the PDF page dimensions, enter a percentage in the Scale Relative To Target Page (in the Appearance area of the dialog box).

  5. Adjust the appearance and position of the watermark, as needed.
  6. (Optional) Click Appearance Options and specify the following options:

    • To specify when the watermark appears, select or deselect Show When Printing and Show When Displaying On Screen.

    • To control variations in a PDF with pages of varying sizes, select or deselect Keep Position And Size Of Watermark Text Constant When Printing On Different Page Sizes.

  7. (Optional) To apply the same settings to additional PDFs, click Apply To Multiple Files. Click Add Files, choose Add Files or Add Open Files, and then select the files. Then in the Output Options dialog box, specify your folder and filename preferences, and click OK.

Add or replace a watermark, with no document open (Windows only)

  1. Choose Tools > Edit PDF > Watermark > Add.

  2. In the dialog box, click Add Files, choose Add Files, and then select the files.

    Note:

    You can also add files or folders by dragging them into the dialog box.

  3. Click OK to close the Add Watermark dialog box.

  4. Follow steps 2 through 6 in the procedure for adding or replacing a watermark with a document open. When you have finished setting up your watermark, click OK.

  5. In the Output Options dialog box, specify your folder and filename preferences and click OK.

Add or replace a watermark in component PDFs in a PDF Portfolio

  1. Select one or more component PDFs in a PDF Portfolio.
  2. Follow the steps in the procedure for adding or replacing a watermark with a document open.

Update a watermark

  1. Open a single PDF.
  2. Choose Tools > Edit PDF > Watermark > Update.

  3. Make changes to the watermark, and then click OK.

Note:

If you have multiple watermarks in a PDF, this procedure will update only the first watermark you added and will discard all other watermarks. If you change your mind about updating the watermarks after you have completed this process, immediately choose Edit > Undo Watermark.

Remove watermarks

  • Do one of the following:
    • Open a single PDF, or select one or more component PDFs in a PDF Portfolio. Then choose Tools > Edit PDF > Watermark > Remove.

    • To remove watermarks from multiple PDFs, close any open PDFs and choose Tools > Edit PDF > Watermark > Remove. In the dialog box that appears, click Add Files, choose Add Files, and then select the files. Click OK, and then in the Output Options dialog box, specify your folder and filename preferences.

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