Top US Examples of Rejected Passport Photos in 2024

US Examples of Rejected Passport Photos

Not sure why your passport photo got rejected? Or maybe you just want to avoid any mistakes before applying? Getting your passport photo done correctly the first time is the best way to speed up your passport application. So use this article to your advantage and find out the top US examples of rejected passport photos. Let’s go!

Last update:3/23/2024

Examples of Rejected Passport Photos

If you’re not quite sure how to take your passport photo, before you begin, it might be helpful to take a look at examples of photos that will not be acceptable to the government as part of an application.

1. Photo Examples Shadows and Lighting

Examples of Rejected Passport Photos Shadows and Lighting

2. Glasses 

Examples of Rejected Passport Photos glasses

3. Size & Position

Examples of Rejected Passport Photos size & position

 3. Pose & Expression

4. Hats & Hair

5. Background

Examples of Rejected Passport Photos background

6. Resolution and Quality

Examples of Rejected Passport Photos resolution & quality

Examples of Rejected Passport Photos for a Baby

Below you can see what sort of photo will be rejected when submitting a passport application for a baby.

Examples of Rejected Passport Photos for a Baby

Examples of Approved Passport Photo Adult & Baby

See below to find out what sort of photo will be accepted when submitting your passport application for adults & babies.

How to Make Sure Your Photo Will Not Get Rejected?

It can be a little difficult to get your passport photo right, however, it’s entirely possible with some proper guidance. The best way to get your passport photo perfect is to take your photo using Smartphone iD.

Not only will you receive professional guidance from start to finish, but we include expert compliance checks with our service. This means you can be 100% sure that your photo will get accepted by the government. If for some reason it’s not? We’ll send you a full refund!

Tips to Make Sure Your Photo Will Not Get Rejected

  1. Photo size: A United States Passport photo must be 2 inches x 2 inches in size. In addition, your head needs from chin to crown needs to be 25-36mm. There needs to be a gap between your head and the edges of the photo as well.
  2. Contrast, saturation and exposure: The colour and hue of your photos must be as close to reality as possible. There shouldn’t be any deep shadows or glare on your face – ensure even lighting across your face. Use natural lighting without any after-effects or filters.
  3. Photo background: The background in your photo should be a plain white background without textures or shadows. Ensure there are no objects or other people in the photo.
  4. Photo posture: When you take your photo, you need to be directly facing the camera as well as have a straight posture with eyes directly at the camera lens. Keep a neutral expression. Once you’ve taken the photo, make sure your nose is in the center and your eyes are a third from the top of the photo.
  5. Facial obstructions & accessories: You’re not permitted to wear glasses in your photo. You can wear them if you have a doctor’s note proving they are necessary to be worn. Things like hair covering your face, or other accessories obscuring your face are not acceptable in your photo.

Do You Have to Pay Again if Your Passport Photo is Rejected?

Unfortunately, if you’ve submitted your passport application and it’s been rejected because of your photo, you’ll have to submit another one. In this case, you will receive contact from the passport office (Travel Department of State), usually via letter, to tell you what went wrong. After this, your application will be frozen for a period of 90 days so that you can submit a compliant photo.

You might not have to pay again if your passport photo is rejected, however, you will have to consider the costs of retaking your photo, getting it right, and sending it back within a timeframe.

When you choose Smartphone iD for taking your passport photos, you won’t have to worry about whether your photo will get rejected. This is because we provide you with a 100% guarantee of government acceptance. Nevertheless, if for any reason your photo is rejected, which is unlikely, we’ll send you a full refund!

How to Check if Your Passport Photo is Acceptable?

Once you’ve taken your photo, you can make sure it’s acceptable by comparing it with the United States government’s official passport photo requirements. Did you know there’s a way to avoid all the hassle of checking every requirement? Simply download our Smartphone iD app! Our AI software algorithm will complete full verification checks on your photo.


It can be stressful receiving a rejection letter in the mail. But don’t worry! If you take the time to get your passport photo correct, you’ll be able to get back on track in no time at all.

With these examples of rejected passport photos, you should have an idea of what your passport photo needs to look like. Don’t hesitate to get a pre-approved passport photo for your passport application and future use, with our fast and cheap app – Smartphone iD.

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