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What to Wear for Passport Photo

Choosing the Right Attire for Your Passport Photo

Selecting the Perfect Outfit

When it comes to what to wear for a passport photo, simplicity is key. Opt for solid, dark colors like navy, black, or dark green. These colors contrast well with the typical light background, ensuring your face is the focal point. Avoid bright patterns and logos, as they can be distracting.

The Best Color Choices

The best color to wear for a passport photo is usually a dark hue. It creates a clear distinction from the background. Also, dark colors also tend to look more formal and suitable for an official document like a passport.

Side Note

You can get your passport photo taken from your phone, or at a number of pharmacy and AAA locations which take passport photos.

Clothing Do’s and Don’ts

It’s important to avoid white or very light shirts, as they can blend into the background. Avoid wearing uniforms or attire resembling uniforms, as they can be mistaken for official clothing, which passport photos do not permit. Comfort is crucial, so choose an outfit that makes you feel at ease. This will help you maintain a natural and relaxed expression.

Final Touches

Remember, your passport photo is a representation of you for the next several years. By choosing the right passport clothing, you ensure a smooth process and a photo that you can be proud of. Keep these tips in mind, and you’ll be well on your way to a great passport photo.

Navigating Accessories and Glasses in Passport Photos

Glasses: To Wear or Not to Wear

A common question is, “Can you wear glasses in a passport photo?” The simple answer is it’s best to avoid them if possible. Glasses can cause glare or obscure your eyes, which are key identification features. If you must wear glasses for medical reasons, ensure there’s no glare and your eyes are clearly visible.

Earrings and Jewelry

When it comes to earrings and other jewelry, less is more. Small, unobtrusive earrings are generally acceptable. However, large, flashy pieces can distract from your face. The goal is to keep the focus on your facial features, so minimal jewelry is best.

Headwear and Hair Considerations

You can wear headwear for religious or medical reasons, but it must not cover any part of your face. Style your hair to avoid obscuring your face. If you have bangs, make sure they don’t cover your eyes. You may need to provide additional documentation with your passport application to justify any headwear in the passport photo.

Section 3: Mastering Passport Photo Makeup

The Basics of Passport Photo Makeup

When it comes to passport photo makeup, the key is to aim for a natural look. Can you wear makeup for passport photos? Absolutely, but it should enhance rather than transform. Heavy makeup can alter your appearance significantly, which might cause issues with identification.

Achieving a Natural Look

A light foundation, subtle blush, and neutral eyeshadows are your best choices. They enhance your features without making you look overly done. Remember, the photo will be in your passport for years, so choose a timeless look that represents you naturally.

Lipstick and Eye Makeup Tips

Opt for a lipstick shade close to your natural lip color. Avoid very bright or dark colors, as they can look harsh under the photo lighting. For eye makeup, stick to neutral shades and avoid heavy eyeliner or false lashes. The goal is to look like yourself on your best day.

Final Touches

A light dusting of translucent powder can reduce shine, especially important under the bright lights used for passport photos. Keep your makeup balanced and true to your everyday look for the best results.

Passport Makeup Tutorial

For those seeking guidance, a passport makeup tutorial can be helpful. These tutorials often provide tips on achieving a look that’s both natural and photo-friendly, ensuring your passport photo is both flattering and compliant with regulations. Just search for “passport makeup tutorial”.

Advanced Tips for Passport Photo Attire

Choosing the Right Color Shirt

Selecting the right color shirt for your passport photo is crucial. Dark colors like navy or charcoal create a strong contrast against the light background. This makes your photo look clearer and more professional. Avoid bright or neon colors, as they can be distracting.

Understanding the Impact of Clothing Styles

The style of your clothing can also affect your passport photo’s appearance. A collared shirt or a blouse with a simple neckline is often recommended. These styles frame your face well and lend a neat, professional look. Avoid tops with busy patterns or large logos.

Balancing Fashion and Function

While you want to look good in your passport photo, it’s important to balance fashion with the photo’s requirements. Choose an outfit that feels true to your style but also adheres to the guidelines. Remember, this photo represents you for several years, so comfort and personal expression are key.

Dress Code for Passport Photo

The dress code for a passport photo is generally formal or semi-formal. This doesn’t mean you need to wear business attire, but a smart, neat appearance is important. Think of what you might wear for a job interview or an important meeting.

Clothes for Passport Photo

When selecting clothes for your passport photo, consider the fit as well. Clothes that are too loose or too tight can affect how your photo turns out. Aim for well-fitting, comfortable clothing that gives you a clean, put-together look.

Passport Photo Shirt Options

For men, a dress shirt or a smart casual shirt works well. For women, a blouse or a simple top with a modest neckline is ideal. Regardless of gender, the goal is to choose a shirt that looks professional and doesn’t distract from your face.

What Not to Wear for Passport Photos

Avoiding Common Mistakes

When preparing for a passport photo, knowing what not to wear is as important as knowing what to wear. Avoid bright and flashy clothing as it can cause distractions. This includes neon colors, loud prints, and shirts with prominent logos or slogans.

Steering Clear of Certain Styles

Certain styles of clothing can cause issues with passport photo regulations. Tank tops, strapless tops, and overly casual attire like t-shirts might not convey the required level of formality. It’s best to opt for more conservative and neutral choices.

Jewelry and Accessory Guidelines

While small, simple jewelry is usually acceptable, large or shiny pieces can detract from your face. Unless worn for religious reasons, avoid wearing accessories like scarves or hats, following the same rule. Keep accessories minimal to ensure your face is the focus of the photo. You can wear earrings in your passport photo.

Hair and Makeup Considerations

Avoid hairstyles that cover your face or eyes. Similarly, you can use makeup, but it should remain natural and not overly dramatic. The goal is to look like yourself, as you would on a regular day.

Glasses and Headwear

As a general rule, it’s best to remove glasses for a passport photo to avoid glare or shadows. If you must wear them, ensure they don’t obscure your eyes. Headwear for non-religious purposes should generally be avoided.

The Right Attire for Children

For children’s passport photos, the same rules generally apply. Dress them in simple, solid-colored clothing without busy patterns or logos. Ensure their face is clearly visible and not obscured by hats or large collars.

Final Tips

Remember, your passport photo is a key identification document and will be used for several years. Dressing appropriately ensures a smooth process and a photo that meets all the necessary criteria. Keep it simple, professional, and true to your everyday appearance for the best results.

Special Considerations for Passport Photos

Adapting to Different Age Groups

When it comes to passport photos, different age groups may have different considerations. For infants and young children, ensure their head is supported and their face is visible without any toys or pacifiers. For older adults, comfort and ease of wear should be prioritized, along with the general guidelines.

Cultural Considerations

Cultural attire is acceptable in passport photos as long as it does not cover the face. If your cultural or religious dress includes headwear, ensure it does not cast shadows on your face. The key is to keep the face fully visible and unobstructed. Additional documentation may be required with your application in order to justify the headwear in the photo.

Keeping Up with Trends and Guidelines

Trends like the TikTok passport makeup can be fun, but always cross-check with current passport photo requirements. What’s trendy might not always be appropriate for an official document like a passport. Stay informed about the latest guidelines to ensure compliance.

Special Cases: Glasses and Makeup

If you need to wear glasses due to medical reasons, make sure there’s no glare on the lenses. For makeup, while trends can be tempting, stick to a look that resembles your daily appearance. This helps in maintaining consistency in identification.

Passport Photos for Different Purposes

Remember, passport photos might also be used for other official documents like visas. Different countries may have slightly different requirements. Always check the specific requirements for the country you are applying to.

Preparing for the Photo Session

Before the photo session, take a moment to check your appearance. A quick look in the mirror to adjust your hair, straighten your shirt, or touch up your makeup can make a big difference. Feeling prepared and confident will reflect in your photo.

Flexibility and Adaptation

While it’s important to follow the guidelines, there’s still room for personal expression within those boundaries. Choose attire and makeup that make you feel comfortable and confident, while still adhering to the rules. This balance will help you get a passport photo that you’re happy with and that meets all necessary criteria.

Final Preparations for Your Passport Photo

Double-Checking Your Attire

Before taking your passport photo, give your outfit one last check. Ensure your shirt is wrinkle-free and sits well. If you’ve chosen to wear a jacket or blazer, adjust it to sit neatly. This attention to detail can make a significant difference in the final photo.

Hair and Makeup Adjustments

Take a moment to ensure your hair is styled neatly and away from your face. If you’re wearing makeup, a quick touch-up to ensure it’s even and natural-looking can be beneficial. Remember, the goal is to look like your everyday self.

Posture and Expression

Your posture and expression are just as important as your attire. Sit up straight and relax your shoulders. Practice a neutral expression with a closed mouth and a natural, relaxed look in your eyes. Avoid exaggerated expressions, as they can affect the photo’s acceptance.

Lighting and Background

When you’re at the photo studio or wherever you’re taking the photo, pay attention to the lighting and background. The background is usually a light color, so your dark attire will stand out. Good lighting will ensure your features are clearly visible without harsh shadows.

Final Review

After the photo is taken, review it if possible. Check for any issues with glare, shadows, or expressions. If you’re not satisfied, don’t hesitate to ask for a retake. It’s important that you’re happy with the photo, as it will be with you for a long time.

Preparing Children for Passport Photos

If you’re taking a passport photo of a child, make sure they’re well-rested and comfortable. Bring a favorite toy or item to help them stay calm and focused. For babies, feeding them beforehand can ensure they’re content during the photo session.


Preparing for a passport photo is more than just a routine task; it’s an important step in ensuring your identity is accurately and professionally represented in your travel documents. By carefully selecting your attire, considering the use of accessories and makeup, and paying attention to the finer details like posture and expression, you can ensure that your passport photo is not only compliant with the necessary regulations but also a true reflection of yourself.

Remember, while the guidelines may seem strict, they are in place to ensure your safety and ease of travel. A well-taken passport photo can smooth the way for hassle-free travel experiences. So, take the time to prepare, follow these tips, and you’ll have a passport photo that you can be proud of, one that will accompany you on all your adventures around the globe.


What is the best color to wear for a passport photo?

Dark, solid colors like navy, black, or dark green are ideal as they provide good contrast with the background.

Can I wear glasses in my passport photo?

It’s recommended to avoid glasses if possible to prevent glare. If necessary, ensure they don’t obscure your eyes.

Is makeup allowed in passport photos?

Yes, but it should be natural and subtle, enhancing rather than transforming your appearance.

Are there any specific clothing items to avoid in a passport photo?

Avoid wearing uniforms, clothes that resemble uniforms, or tops with large logos or distracting patterns.

Can I wear jewelry in my passport photo?

Small, unobtrusive jewelry is generally acceptable, but large or shiny pieces should be avoided.

How should I style my hair for a passport photo?

Style your hair so it doesn’t obscure your face, and avoid hairstyles that cover your eyes or face.

Is there a specific dress code for passport photos?

While there’s no strict dress code, it’s best to opt for a smart, neat appearance, similar to what you might wear for a job interview.

Can I wear a hat or head covering in my passport photo?

Hats are generally not allowed unless worn for religious reasons, and they must not obscure the face.

How can I ensure my passport photo is accepted?

Follow the guidelines for attire, makeup, and accessories, and ensure your face is clearly visible and well-lit in the photo.

What should I do if my passport photo is not accepted?

If your photo is rejected, review the specific reasons for rejection, make the necessary adjustments, and submit a new photo.