How to block email from a sender in Gmail using filters

You might be shocked to learn that Gmail doesn’t offer an official way to block senders. So, what are you supposed to do when you find yourself on an annoying mailing list or circular and there’s no easy way to unsubscribe?

Luckily, Gmail’s filtering system gives you the power to block a sender with a simple rule. Today, we’re going to show you how to do that in a few easy steps. You’ll discover how to set up the rule the first time round, then add additional email addresses that you want to block. Let’s get started:

1. Find an email from a sender you want to block

Gmail - filter messages like thisFirst up, find an email from your annoying sender and open it up. Click the little arrow to the right of the “reply” icon and you’ll see an option to Filter messages like this. Click this and let’s get started.

2. Review the filter settings

Gmail: filter by email address

Make sure the email contains the correct email address in the ‘From’ box. Next, click Create filter with this search.

3. Set the email to delete

Filter settings

This final step is pretty easy – in your Gmail filter settings, simply tick the Delete it option and then click Create filter. If you like, you can also choose the option to apply the filter to existing conversations – this will delete all the other messages from the sender, conveniently cleaning them out of your inbox.

Adding other addresses to your block list

Okay, so the next step in your email blocking odyssey is to add other irritating email addresses to the list. Rather than add individual rules for each sender, you can just add them to the filter you just created. Here’s what to do:

  1. Go to your Gmail settings and click on the Filters tab.
  2. Find your filter – newer filters are at the bottom – and click the Edit button.
  3. The filter settings box will pop up with the first email in the From box. To add new addresses, simply separate them with a pipe character (|). For example, annoyingsender@gmail.com|spammyfriend@live.com|crappycircular@hotmail.com will block all three of those email addresses. Give it a try for yourself.
  4. Click Continue to finish configuring the rules and save them by clicking Update Filter. Job done. You can update this filter as you see fit to manage your block list.

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