Specific requirements for the UK visa photo that you must comply to, size, quality, background, angle, face mimics and more.

Every time you apply for a UK visa or other residence permit, you have to submit one or few printed or digital photographs of yourself, alongside other key UK visa required documents.

These photos must meet specifications of the UK visa and immigration, or your application will mostly get delayed.

UK Visa Photo Requirements

Your UK visa photo must be:

  • Taken within one month.
  • Portrait that is in contrast to the background.
  • Show from head to upper shoulders.
  • Shouldn’t be blurry, lined or marked.
  • With a clear basic cream or light grey background.
  • Must not contain any writing on the front or backside, unless required.
  • Not containing watermarks or crinkles.
  • Printed in a white high-quality medium/low gloss or matt photographic paper, in color.
  • Both eyes should be open and visible. Covering eyes with eyeglasses or hair isn’t permitted.
  • Directly gazing at the camera focus.
  • Face should be fully visible. Covering face is not permitted, neither with hair.
  • Head must be uncovered. Except when it is for medical or religious matters.
  • Keeping a neutral face expression. No smile, no wrinkling.
  • Mouth closed.
  • Positioning face frontward.
  • Your face should be displayed in uniform brightness. Shadows on the face or behind it aren’t allowed.
  • Apparent portrait with no reflection or glass shine.
  • No “Red-eye effect” from the camera flash.
  • One portrait at a time. Two people or other objects in one photo aren’t allowed.

UK Visa Photo Don’t’s

There are common mistakes everyone may do when getting photographed for UK visa photo, such as:

  • Exaggerated make up that covers your natural look.
  • Keeping on sunglasses or colored glasses. Keeping eyeglasses for medical reasons is allowed, unless the picture shows a flash reflection or shine on them.
  • Looking elsewhere, despite the camera focus.
  • Showing teeth.
  • Smiling or giggling.
  • Wearing a hat.
  • Wearing a top of the same color as the photo background.
  • Outfitted with uniforms, unless they’re for religious purposes.
  • Robed by scarves, or other headweares that cover your hairline. Except for religious headweares.

UK Visa Photo Requirements for Children

When a baby or a toddler is getting photographed for a UK visa photo, these are the requirements:

  • Children of age six and older should have a direct look at the camera.
  • Children of age six and older shouldn’t be smiling, crying or giggling.
  • They must not be held during the shooting session.
  • The hand of a person supporting their head shouldn’t be visible in the photo.
  • They should have both eyes open. Except for babies under the age of 1.
  • They shouldn’t be carrying toys or pacifiers.

Note: The applicant must submit two identical photos, separated from each other and must not be attached to the application form.

UK Visa Photo Examples

Below we have listed some examples of DO’s and DON’T’s when taking a picture for UK visa application.

uk photo requirements

UK Visa Digital Photo Requirements

There are cases when you’ll be required to provide digital, instead of printed UK visa photographs. In such case you’ve to upload in online system a file of the photograph.

What Are Additional Requirements for Digital Photographs for UK Visas?

The digital photograph you provide when applying for a UK visa or residence permit must have additional features. This includes:

  • Dimensions: minimum (600 x 750) pixels wide and tall.
  • Photo file size: 50KB – 10 MB.
  • The image file format must be either JPG or JPEG.

Should I Take New Pictures If My Look Has Changed the Most Recently?

You should provide the most recent photos that show your latest appearance. You should offer new photos of the most recent days if:

  • You have endured a substantial facial trauma or surgery.
  • You have lost or gained a great amount of weight.
  • You have removed or added a visible facial tattoo or piercing.
  • You have started wearing a religious uniform.
  • You have undergone a gender transition.

Where Should I take a UK Visa Photograph?

The UK visa photo requirements are very specific and you may find it impossible to meet them on the “do it yourself” basis.

The best way to make sure you don’t fail to provide UK visa photos that meet the specifications is by taking them at the specialized photography services. They have the high-quality cameras, proper photography backgrounds, and photographic papers of the required standard.

(Photos taken from: https://www.gov.uk/photos-for-passports)

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