A bad driver’s license photo can follow you for years. Get ready for your closeup at the DMV by taking a few selfies. The trial run will give you an idea of how you’ll appear photographed under one light source and help you find a flattering angle. On picture day, wear a top in a flattering color — choose one that has attracted compliments — and avoid clothing with busy patterns.


Looking Good

Wear natural-looking makeup for a driver’s license photo, such as foundation and lipstick in pink, brown and peach tones. Smoky eyeshadow and dark lips can look garish under the DMV’s harsh lights. In your photo, “you want to look like you, as this is a form of serious identification,” according to Refinery 29. Blot your face with a tissue or oil-absorbing sheet to avoid shiny skin, and lift your face up and project it outward slightly to catch more light and hide flaws. Don’t forget to smile to avoid the mugshot look.

Try for a Second Chance

If you don’t like the photo, politely ask the DMV employee who took your photo whether you may take another shot. Quickly adjust anything that’s out of place, like smudged lipstick or messy hair. If you have to accept a photo you don’t like, just smile whenever you have to use it and remember that you’re not the only person who looks a little funny on an ID.