When selecting a path or more paths with the Selection Tool or *Direct Selection Tool, I do not see the blue guide lines anymore. So I cannot know what is selected as well as how many anchor points are in a path. However when I put the mouse over a path, I can still see them.

How can I bring this blue lines (guide lines) back?

5 Answers 5


In addition to John's post, it could be...

View > Show Edges

And the short cut is Command/Ctrl + h


View > Smart Guides

And the short cut is Command/Ctrl + u

  • Ah, this sounds more like the right answer now that I re-read it. Calling them guide lines threw me off :)
    – JohnB
    Commented Sep 1, 2013 at 0:49
  • Thanks @Scott, this is exactly what I was looking for. I am new to the Illustrator vocabulary.
    – kiewic
    Commented Sep 1, 2013 at 0:59

Sounds like you may have accidentally turned them off. To turn them back on:

ViewGuidesShow Guides

You may have made them invisible accidentally by hitting the hotkey, which is Ctrl | Cmd + ;

  • Thanks JohnB, but this didn't show the lines I was looking for.
    – kiewic
    Commented Sep 1, 2013 at 0:58

I find myself referring to this thread pretty often, so I'll also throw in that sometimes I need to change the GPU Preview setting to get the blue lines to show up:

View > GPU Preview (Cmd+E) --> uncheck


In my CS6 x64, when using the pen tool for adding points, the smart guides don't show. However, if you add a point, then use the direct selection arrow tool to move the point, THEN you get the smart guides.

However, in CS6 x32, the add-point pen does display the smart guides on my Windows 7.

Of course, you have to have Smart Guides turned on, AND Snap-to-Pixel turned off in your View menu. I think there is a bug involved, though.

Another trick could be to use the direct-selection tool, select the shape first, then select the points to move them, and maybe then the guides will show.


This answers a very similar question, but search engines will probably lead here and I'd like to add my answer for those it helps.

I was having a problem where the path outline would not show up when hovering over other shapes. The solution is to disable View → Snap to Grid.

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