Learn How To Take a Passport Photo at Home With Our Tips

Create Passport Photos Learn How To Take a Passport Photo at Home With Our Tips

How To Take a Passport Photo at Home Fuss-Free

Can you use your own picture for a passport? Absolutely yes! Due to expensive professional services, many people opt for taking a passport-size photo at home with their smartphones or cameras. This method can be tricky, as the gear and the image quality can’t be at the same level as when done in a studio.

In this article, we will show you how to take a passport photo at home in a matter of minutes and avoid rejection and delays in your application. Subscribe to DoNotPay and get everything done with our help in a flash!

The Elements of an Acceptable Passport Picture

Before creating a photo by yourself, you should pay attention to the official rules determined by the U.S. Department of State. Failing to comply with the essential guidelines can cause problems and delays during the passport application process.


The main requirements are listed in the following lines:

  • Your picture must be high resolution
  • The size of the photo must be 2 x 2 inches (or 51 mm x 51 mm)
  • Your head size in the picture must be between 1 and 1 ⅜ inches (or 25 cm and 35 cm), measuring from the top of your head to the bottom of your chin
  • Damage of any kind, including holes and smudges, is unacceptable
  • The print quality must be high—matte or glossy paper are the recommended options
  • You must take the photo standing in front of a white background

Benefits of Taking a Passport Photo at Home

Even though snapping a headshot yourself may seem less secure, it has its benefits. You can check them out in the list below:

  • It’s free—If you take a photo in the comfort of your home, you will avoid being overcharged for a few small photos
  • It’s simple—It may look complicated at first, but you can do a really good job by following the provided guidelines
  • You don’t need to go anywhere—This option lets you skip going to local stores or studios to get photographed. This way, you don’t need to spend fuel or waste your time in queues

Tips on How To Take a Passport Photo at Home by Yourself

Here’s a step-by-step guide that will help you go through all the phases of taking your own passport photo:

Phase Explanation
Set the required passport picture background If you don’t have a white wall in the house, a big piece of white paper or a board will do the job, but their edges shouldn’t be visible in the picture. In case you can’t find a white surface for this purpose, you can set the background digitally by using convenient computer programs or apps
Arrange proper lighting The photo mustn’t be too light or too dark. Standing next to the window can provide good light, while the flash will help you avoid shadows and stains on the background
Find the right position Selfies are unacceptable, which is why you should ask a friend or a family member to take a picture of you. If no one is there, make sure you use a tripod or place the camera on an appropriate surface at the height of your head. Your head shouldn’t be tilted, and you must face the camera
Find a perfect facial expression Avoid frowning, smiling wide, or making grimaces in general. The safest bet is to have a neutral expression and a natural, mild smile.

Make sure your hair doesn’t cover your face

Take care of the clothes you are wearing You can wear everyday clothes when taking a photo for this purpose. Uniforms and national costumes aren’t acceptable, as well as hats and other accessories that may hide your face or hairline
Remove the unacceptable accessories While you can keep some types of jewelry, such as thin necklaces, large piercings and other pieces covering your face must be removed. You also shouldn’t wear any glasses, sunglasses, headphones, or wireless and hands-free devices

Once you take a photo that looks satisfying and meets all listed requirements, put the finishing touches by editing it. Transfer the picture to a computer—or open it in a suitable smartphone app—and adjust it to match the requested parameters. You should:

  1. Crop the photo to the correct size
  2. Change the lighting and contrast settings
  3. Fix the background if necessary

How To Take Passport Photos at Home Effortlessly With DoNotPay

If following all the instructions for creating a passport photo seems too complicated to you, give DoNotPay a chance and get the ideal snapshot in a matter of minutes!

All you need to do is upload a digital headshot—we will make all the necessary changes and edit the photo in terms of dimensions and all other settings. This way, you don’t need to adjust anything yourself, as we will do the entire task in your stead.

To use our service, proceed as follows:

  1. Open DoNotPay and sign in to your account
  2. Go to the Passport Photos feature
  3. Attach the photo you want to have edited
  4. Provide us with your email so that we can send you digital copies of the new photo

You can also disclose your mailing info if you want to receive two physical copies to your home address.

You can choose among three shipping options:

  • Economy Shipping—up to ten business days
  • Expedited Shipping—four business days
  • Rush Shipping—three business days

What Other Passport-Related Questions Can DoNotPay Answer?

Explore a vast collection of amazing passport photo guides. We will help you find out:

Find your place of residence in the table below to see where you can have your passport photos taken:

San Diego Sacramento Boston Albuquerque Raleigh
Houston Atlanta Phoenix San Francisco Denver
Cincinnati Rochester Los Angeles Columbus Scottsdale
Honolulu Minneapolis Chicago Tallahassee Kansas City
New York City Portland Philadelphia Austin Rockville
Seattle Charleston San Jose San Antonio Charlotte
Herndon Colville Indianapolis Las Vegas Brooklyn

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