Im trying to alter the colors on my section, subsection and subsubsection.

I do so using the titlesec page:


But the problem is i have to enter the font and font size also. I am using the fontenc package:


But i cant seem to find out what font and size is being used for the section, subsection and subsubsection.

These 2 values i mean: \Large\bfseries\sffamily

I tried to look in the .sty but that wasent very helpful.

  • What document class do you use?
    – lockstep
    Commented Feb 5, 2011 at 12:10
  • report, and Martins answer looks like rocket sience to me. Is there no easier way?
    – Toroo
    Commented Feb 5, 2011 at 12:18

2 Answers 2


The second argument of the \titleformat*{\<name>}{<code>} is stored in a macro called \ttlf@<name> which (default) definition can be printed to the command line with \show\ttlf@<name>, after a \makeatletter of course.


macro:->\ttlh@hang {\normalfont \Large \bfseries }{\@seccntformat {section}}{\z
@ }{\ttl@passexplicit }{}. 


macro:->\ttlh@hang {\normalfont \large \bfseries }{\@seccntformat {subsection}}
{\z@ }{\ttl@passexplicit }{}. 


macro:->\ttlh@hang {\normalfont \normalsize \bfseries }{\@seccntformat {subsubs
ection}}{\z@ }{\ttl@passexplicit }{}. 

Therefore the correct settings for the requested title formats are:


Just for completeness here also the settings for \paragraph and \subparagraph:

  • I got it, guess it was too early. Thx
    – Toroo
    Commented Feb 5, 2011 at 12:26
  • @Toroo: I added the final result now for more clarity for you and other people which want to do the same thing. Commented Feb 7, 2011 at 17:22
  • Hi, any idea how to tweak this s.t it does not mess up numbering ? Just removing the asterix after \titleformat does not work for me. Thx !
    – AnaK
    Commented Apr 29, 2016 at 12:50
  • @AnaK: What is the exact problem with the numbering in your document? Commented May 3, 2016 at 16:38

This is more a comment on Martin's answer, but it's too long, so I'm putting it as a community wiki answer.

For more user-friendliness, you can define a \addtotitleformat macro which allows you to only write


without having to repeat the other formatting information each time. Here's the code:



  \PackageError{titlesec}{non starred form of \string\addtotitleformat\space not supported}{}}
       \csname ttlf@\expandafter\@gobble\string#1\endcsname}%



\section{Section title}

\subsection{Section title}

  • Here my \multexpafter would be handy ... Commented Feb 5, 2011 at 14:54
  • @Hendrik: Yes, it would allow just to type \multexpafter3\def\multexpafter3\@currentsection@font\multexpafter4{\multexpafter2\@secondofsix. Are you planning on making a package out of your code? It would then be much easier to use than to have to copy the code each time. Commented Feb 5, 2011 at 17:02
  • I've never ever been close to writing a package, so if you have a package where you think it would be worth to include, please do (and just acklowledge the author in the code). Commented Feb 5, 2011 at 17:07
  • @Hendrik: As \multexpafter is a helper macro, a standalone package would be preferable for it. Doing a package out of your code is just a matter of copying it to a .tex file, making a three-line .sty file which inputs it and then a short pdf file explaining how to use it. If you want, I can do that for you but as author of the code, you should be the package maintainer since you're the one who knows it best. Commented Feb 5, 2011 at 21:49
  • Thanks for those explanations. Now it seems, however, that Bruno should write a package that includes his \MultiExpandAfter. Commented Feb 13, 2011 at 15:59

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