Ever since remote meetings and classes became the norm, virtual backgrounds have been the most loved and used feature of video meetings and WSC apps. Whether you have a messy, inappropriate, or boring background, no one in the meeting has to know – all thanks to this cherished feature.

In Microsoft Teams, you have the option to change your background either before joining or during the meeting. But sometimes, when you’re in a hurry to join a meeting, you can forget to change your background beforehand. And for people who want their background to be in place before the meeting, it can prove to be an annoyance.

Is there no way to change your background other than when you’re about to join a meeting or are already in the meeting? Sadly, there’s no direct method. As much as an option to change your background from the camera settings would make sense (apps like Zoom and Google Meet do have one), Teams doesn’t have one. Yet. You can see if you have a background active or not, but you cannot change it from the settings.

Fortunately, there’s a workaround that can come to your aid. Hint: It involves getting into a meeting by yourself. Here goes nothing.

See If you have an Active Background

First things first. You don’t have to hop on a lone call if you already have a background in place. And checking it just takes a couple of clicks.

To see your present background, click the ‘three-dot menu’ icon on the title bar next to your profile picture. Then, select ‘Settings’ from the context menu.

The settings window will open. Go to ‘Devices’ from the navigation menu on the left.

Then, scroll down to the end; you’ll reach the Camera options. Beneath the camera, a drop-down menu will be a preview tile of your video. If the preview tile is showing a background, you have a background active. Otherwise, you can change it by following the steps below.

Change your Teams Background

You can still use the meeting preview screen to change your background before you join an actual meeting. The steps below are for users who want to have their background set before the actual meeting. The steps for changing the background from the meeting preview window are also the same whether you’re joining the meeting only by yourself or with others.

Open the Microsoft Teams app and click the ‘Calendar’ tab from the navigation bar on the left.

Then, click the ‘Meet Now’ button and click ‘Start Meeting’ from the context menu.

The meeting preview screen will open. Turn on the toggle for ‘Camera’ if it isn’t enabled; the option for background effects remains inaccessible until the camera is off.

Then, click the ‘Background Filters’ option.

The background settings pane will open on the right. Select a background from the images available or click ‘Add New’ to add your own.

You can see the selected background in the video tile above. Close the background settings pane. That’s it; your background has been applied. You can click ‘Cancel’ or ‘Close’ to end the meeting.

Your background will stay the same for all future meetings until you change it or turn background effects off explicitly.

Having the right background for the meeting is crucial for many people. Using the workaround above, you can be sure of that before your actual meetings.