itself is a reflexive pronoun, commonly used to refer back to the subject of a sentence or clause. For example, if the subject is 'Joe', then the reflexive pronoun 'itself' can be used to refer back to Joe. It is typically used for emphasis, as in 'Joe baked the cake itself.' It can also be used to refer to other nouns, or to the entire sentence, as in 'The problem itself was difficult to solve.'
the reflexive pronoun should generally refer back to the subject (or another noun within the sentence); it should be placed directly after the noun it is referring to; and it should not be used to modify a verb, gerund, adjective, or adverb.
1. Alex bought the house itself.
2. Joe designed the website itself.
3. The recipe itself was surprisingly simple.
italicizing the word itself may help express further emphasis. Also, it should not be used interchangeably with 'himself' and 'herself' - if there are male and female subjects, be sure to use the gender-specific reflexive pronoun. Common mistakes include using it instead of 'himself' or 'herself', or failing to include it after the appropriate noun when needed.