What photo to provide for an identity document (passport, identity card...)?

Verified 20 March 2023 - Directorate of Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister), Ministry of the Interior

The photo ID must have been taken a while ago less than 6 months and be resembling.

For an application for an identity card or passport, there is onlyone photo to be provided.

The photo must be taken by a qualified professional or in a cabin using an approved system by the Ministry of the Interior.

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The photo must meet multiple characteristics.

Infographie - Examples of accepted or rejected photos
Illustration X - Examples of accepted or rejected photos
Illustration X
Crédits: Direction de l’information légale et administrative

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Examples of accepted or rejected photos

Examples of accepted or rejected photos - plus de détails dans le texte suivant l’infographie
Crédits: Service Public (DILA)Infographie - Examples of accepted or rejected photos

Tableau - Photo ID: standards to be respected




The photo must be sharp, without creasing or trace.


  • Width: 3.5 cm
  • Height: 4.5 cm
  • Face size: 3.2 to 3.6 cm (70 to 80% of the photo), from the lower chin to the top of the skull (excluding hair)

Brightness, contrast and colors

The photograph must not show either over-exposure or under-exposure.

It should be well-contrasted, with no shadow cast on the face or in the background.

A color photo is strongly recommended.


The background shall be plain, light in color (e.g. light blue or light gray).

White background is prohibited.


The head must be bare (no hat, scarf or headband for example).

The head should be straight and the face should face the lens.

Look and expression

You have to set the target.

The expression must be neutral and the mouth must be closed.

Face and eyes

The face should be clear.

The wearing of earrings or piercing is permitted provided that it clearly distinguishes the features of the face.

The eyes must be perfectly visible and open.


Hair should not cover the face.

A fringe can be accepted if it does not cover the eyes.

Ears should be clear.

Spectacles and frames

If you have glasses, you don't have to wear them in the photos.

However, if you wear them:

  • The frame should not be thick and should not mask the eyes
  • Lenses shall be neither colored nor colored nor reflective
  • Warning  

    if the photo does not meet certain criteria, it will be rejected and the identity document will not be issued.