How to Change a Login Picture on Mac

Go to Users & Groups in System Preferences to update your pic

What To Know

  • To change a profile photo, go to System Preferences > Users & Groups > Edit > choose image > Save.
  • To change login wallpaper, System Preferences > Desktop & Screen Saver > choose and customize image.
  • When you change your profile photo, the change occurs on all devices using the same Apple ID.

This article explains how to change a Mac login picture, how to change Mac login wallpaper, and provides some related tips.

How to Change Your Mac Login Picture

Changing the login picture of your Mac takes a few clicks in your System Preferences, but the process does come with one catch. Here's what to do:

  1. Click the Apple menu in the top left corner and click System Preferences.

    System Preferences highlighted in the Apple menu on Mac
  2. Click Users & Groups.

    Users and Groups in The System Preferences window on Mac
  3. Hover your mouse over your current profile picture and click Edit.

    Edit inside profile photo in the Users & Groups window on Mac
  4. If you can't click Edit in the previous step, click the lock in the lower-left corner to make changes.

    The lock icon in macOS settings
  5. The pop-up window provides all of the options:

    • Memoji: Animated characters that you can customize.
    • Emoji: Classic emoji icons.
    • Monogram: A stylized version of your initials.
    • Camera: Take a new photo using your Mac's camera.
    • Photos: Choose an existing picture from the pre-installed Photos app.
    • Suggestions: Take suggestions from Apple or choose from default images.
    The options for a new profile photo in Mac System Preferences
  6. When you've found an image you like, click it. It will be previewed in the bottom left corner. You can customize some images. The options to customize are along the top on the right side.

    For example, for Memoji, you can zoom in using the slider, drag the Memoji around in the circle, choose a Pose, or apply a background color in the Style menu.

    When you've got the login image you want, click Save.

    The options for customizing a profile photo in Mac System Preferences
  7. Your new login picture will appear next to your name.

    New profile photo highlighted in the Users & Groups window on Mac

Changing your Mac login photo also makes the same change on other Apple devices. The login photo is actually the photo that's connected to your Apple ID account. So, you're not just changing something on your Mac; you're actually changing your Apple ID picture. Any device that uses the same Apple ID as you Mac will automatically have this image applied. This detail may not be a problem, but it's worth knowing.

How to Change Your Mac's Login Screen Wallpaper

Your profile photo isn't the only one that you can customize on the Mac login screen. You can change the background wallpaper, too. The login screen uses the same image as your desktop wallpaper. So, to change what you see there, change the desktop by following these steps:

  1. Click the Apple menu in the top left corner and select System Preferences.

    System Preferences highlighted in the Apple menu on Mac
  2. Click Desktop & Screen Saver.

    Desktop & Screen Saver in the System Preferences window on Mac
  3. Pick the image you want to use from the options on the left:

    • Desktop Pictures: This is the set of pre-installed images provided by Apple with the macOS.
    • Colors: A set of pre-defined solid colors.
    • Photos: Select images from your pre-installed Photos app.
    • Folders: Got a folder full of pictures you want to pick from? Add it by clicking the + icon and then browse for a new wallpaper.

    The + icon can do more than add folders. Click it and navigate through your hard drive to any folder or file and you can add it. Just make sure that any image you pick has the same resolution as your monitor or else it will be distorted.

    The Desktop & Screen Saver options on Mac
  4. Click the wallpaper you're interested in and it will be previewed in the window at the top left.

  5. Some wallpapers in the Desktop Pictures section have options in the drop-down menu:

    • Dynamic: Choose this option and the wallpaper will change throughout the day based on your location.
    • Automatic: Adjusts from light to dark mode depending on the time of day.
    • Light: The version of the wallpaper for Light mode.
    • Dark: The version of the wallpaper for Dark mode.

    Some wallpapers have the download icon—the cloud with an arrow in it—next to them. If you want to use that wallpaper, click the download icon to add it to your Mac.

    Options for customizing Mac wallpapers
  6. Once you've picked the wallpaper and settings you want, they're applied to your Mac. Close the window. Log out of your Mac, wake it back up and you'll see the new login screen wallpaper.

    the Mac login screen
  • How do I change my Mac desktop icons?

    To change desktop icons on Mac, find an image you want to use for your new icon and copy it to the clipboard. Then, right-click the drive or folder you want to change and select Get Info. Click the thumbnail and paste your new image.

  • How do I change my login password on Mac?

    To change your Mac login password, go to the Apple menu > Preferences > Users & Groups > Change Password. If you don't know the current password, log in to the admin account and go to Users & Groups > your account > Reset Password or use your Apple ID.

  • How do I change my login name on Mac?

    To change your login name on Mac, from Finder select Go > Go to Folder, enter /Users, then click the folder and press Enter to type a new name. Then, go to System Preferences > Users & Groups, Control+click the user account, select Advanced Options, and update the account name. Finally, restart your Mac.

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