What is a YouTube Profile Picture?

You may have noticed how whenever you post any videos on YouTube, you see a small thumbnail image right next to your channel name, right?

Or the image that appears beside your name whenever you leave any comments on your favorite YouTuber’s latest video?

That’s your YouTube profile picture – also known as a YouTube avatar or channel icon.

Many people end up confusing a YouTube profile picture with channel art when that isn’t the case at all. The latter is your YouTube banner – think of it as your Facebook cover photo.

Your subscribers can only see your YouTube banner when they click on your channel.

Bonus: Create stunning YouTube display pictures in less than a few minutes with our free profile picture maker!


What Is the Ideal YouTube Profile Picture Size?

Youtube Profile Size

Now that we covered the definition, it’s also important to understand the right YouTube profile picture size. 

2020 is the year where having an online presence is more important than ever, which is also something that YouTube can help ensure.

While the kind of content you upload is important, you should also figure out the right photo to represent you and your brand.

Moreover, before you upload your best image to represent yourself or your brand, you should know the right dimensions and ideal size, so it looks good.

Before uploading a YouTube profile picture, make sure that it’s a size of 800 x 800 pixels. If you’re familiar with Instagram or Twitch, you might already know both platforms have the same dimensions for profile pictures as well. 

The other matter of concern for you to bear in mind is YouTube’s circular crop for its channels’ display pictures. So whatever image you choose – whether graphic or textual – you won’t find the corners of your photo visible in your profile photo.

So what should you do?

Try to figure out the best way to make the most of the 800 x 800 window, without having to remove crucial elements of your image.

As a result, you‘ll have the best features of your profile picture visible despite the limited size allowed and the circular profile picture display. 

Failing to do so will give your profile picture very unprofessional and… unpleasant results.

Case in point:

A badly cropped Youtube profile picture

You can indeed try using images that don’t contain any element of a channel icon in the four corners, but it may not always be possible.

Once you’ve figured out the ideal YT profile picture dimensions, the next step is to learn about the recommended size guidelines for YouTube thumbnails. It is one of the most important metrics when ranking your videos.

This is precisely why you should consider using an effective design solution that caters to the needs of both individuals and businesses.

It is important to note that the appropriate dimensions for a YT video are 1920 x 1080px which should be kept in mind when looking to maximize from this platform.

Why Bother With a YouTube Profile Picture?

“Does my YouTube profile picture matter? What’s all this hype?“ – haven’t we all wondered this while trying to figure out exactly why our YouTube profile picture counts so much, especially when it’s so small?

Well, with 2 billion monthly active users, 30 million daily active users, and around 5 billion videos watched per day – that’s the power of YouTube for you.

This means even you can take advantage of such fantastic statistics when you put out content and make sure your YouTube display picture is perfect for your brand.

Your profile picture is your avatar on YouTube. As mentioned before, it’ll be there when you comment on other user’s videos, and when users click on your channel or make any sort of engagement on YouTube.

Additionally, it’s better to choose a picture that is easy to recognize since the same icon will be visible throughout your Google profiles, such as Gmail and Google+.

So when you take the initiative to select a suitable image carefully, it’ll also help you to maximize the potential of visibility in the digital community. 

And we should always make the most of opportunities, right?

How to Make a YouTube Profile Picture With No Design Skills?

Now that we’ve shed enough light on the importance of having a good YouTube profile picture, let’s focus on how you can make one without much effort – even when you don’t have design skills.

Step 1: Open Pixelied’s Editor (It’s Free) 

Open Pixelied’s free editor to get started and you’ll see the following window with the recommended YT profile picture dimensions:

The best thing about Pixelied is that it’s easy to use a design editor that makes customizing your YouTube profile picture easy and effortless. Pixelied is also a great platform if you’re looking for inspirations and ideas for your YouTube channel art or thumbnails.

On your right-hand side, you have the option to add an image as well as elements. Before we proceed to talk about the elements, we have a quick tip for you.

Try to choose images that don’t contain any elements of your channel icon in the four corners of the 800 x 800 square, as the final design will be a circle.

Step 2: Add Your Elements to the Canvas

Now to the fun part!

Here, you have the option to change the background color, add images, text, elements, and icons. 

Any image you click on will automatically be added to the artboard, while also activating the top edit menu. You can use this menu to edit the image whichever you may want it.

Pixelied gives you several customization and design features without having to spend anything extra. The following is a quick overview of the various customization features available at your disposal:

  • Add fully customizable and easy-to-use elements to the artboard. After this, you will have the option to tweak the elements as needed.
  • You can upload your own images, icons, logos, or any other file type since Pixelied supports external files as well. For instance, you can add your brand icon if that’s what you want your display picture to look like.
  • Layering is another possibility. You can use layers to change the elements’ position on the artboard. For example, if you want to send an element to the background or push another one forward – it’s all possible!
  • Don’t forget to take advantage of other editing options, such as border, shadow, lock, color, duplicate, flip, lock, and resize. Each one of these options is one-click and can be directly accessed from the Pixelied editor.

Place the circle to know how the end result will look

After you’ve sorted out your 800 x 800 size image, place a circle on to the graphic. Stretch the circle in a way that some of the sides touch the outline of the photo.

This will help you get a better idea of how your YouTube profile image would look like and what is likely to be chopped off. You can then adjust the image as needed.

Step 3: Download Your Stunning Design

Delete the circle before saving and downloading the YouTube profile picture. You just have to click the download button on the top menu to save your design.

Additionally, you can download your image in JPG, PNG, and PNG transparent formats.

Voila! Your image is now ready to upload on YouTube.

5 Tips to Make a YouTube Profile Picture & Best Practices

Designing a professional and attention-grabbing display image that’s perfectly sized can be easy – provided you know specific factors and best practices to minimize errors and raise the graphic appeal.

The following are a few tips and profile picture ideas to ensure you nail the right YouTube Profile Picture Size and get more traffic to your channel:

1. Add Your Design Inside the Circle 

We really cannot stress enough that you consider that image crop. After all, the last thing you want is for your profile picture to look unfocused, with the key text or image components chopped off.

This is precisely why you should strategically choose an image that has plenty of wiggle room to fit the circular image properly. Take this Xbox image icon here that’s spot on:

Xbox profile picture

2. Be Consistent With All Your Social Media Channels

The primary reason why people have social media accounts is to create a solid brand presence – something that can be achieved by choosing the same brand name imagery, logo, or icon. 

You should then use the same image as your profile picture across all the other social media channels. Not only will this help you establish brand recognition, but you will also be able to create awareness with new users, especially when they search for you on other platforms.

The other advantage is to have some consistency that can show people that it’s indeed your account and not a fake despite not having that coveted blue tick mark for verification just yet.

Just take a look at this channel called Neil Patel on YouTube, for example.

This is the YouTube profile picture:

Neil Patel uses an image of his face on Youtube for maintaining consistency across social media platforms

Instagram profile picture:

Neil Patel uses an image of his face on Instagram for maintaining consistency across social media platforms

Twitter profile picture:

Neil Patel uses an image of his face on Twitter for maintaining consistency across social media platforms

Do you see how maintaining consistency on all social media platforms establishes who Neil Patel is, and what he looks like? This is why his followers will be able to recognize Neil Patel channels on any social media channel.

3. Personalize your Profile Picture

You’ll find several YouTube users often using their head shorts or portrait shots as their profile icons, especially ones who showcase beauty or skincare products or techniques.

You‘ll find this is fairly common because all these channels mostly run on individual brands who want to show off their skills through their appearance.

James Charles Youtube Hude Beauty Youtube

The other benefit of personalizing your profile picture is that your viewers feel more connected to your channel – plus, they’ll easily recognize you whenever they see you somewhere, either physically or virtually as well.

In addition to this, your display picture should be in sync with your niche. 

So if you want your channel to come across as funny, make sure your YouTube icon isn’t serious or too picturesque. Instead, you should choose an image that shows a bit of a personality but also make your view more eager to learn more about you.

The main idea here is for your YouTube profile picture to make a good first impression on your potential subscribers and viewers, but it should always compliment your brand.

Take the vlogbrother’s profile picture as an example:

vlogbrother’s profile picture

Don’t you feel that their display icon is the right mix of quirky and nerdy, giving the viewers an idea of what they can expect once they see their videos? It’s the perfect example of a profile picture that captures the essence of the brand.

4. Text Should Be Visible

While we aren’t very big on the idea of using text-heavy brand images if you do want to add a text, make sure that it’s clearly visible despite the small YouTube crop.

You see, the YouTube profile picture size already doesn’t leave you with much room. Moreover, when viewing the YouTube display photo on smaller devices like mobile phones, the profile picture will become even smaller.

This is precisely why you should opt for simple profile images that comprise bright graphics.

But if you do want to put text, make sure that it’s readable on all kinds of screens from the laptop to mobile phones to tablets.

Otherwise, all your efforts will go in vain when your viewers aren’t able to read the text inside your profile picture.

We know that it can be tempting to add small intricate details inside your profile picture, but in the case of YouTube, it’ll only make your avatar look cluttered and all over the place.

Consider this image, for instance.

Unclear profile picture

The profile picture isn’t readable, and this screenshot has been taken from a desktop. Now imagine when you come across this when scrolling on your mobile device. 


5. Leverage Whitespace

The effective use of whitespace can be very tricky, which is why sticking to clean designs is always the best option.

When we use the word ‘whitespace’, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your whitespace has to be white in color, it’s just that you should opt for a clutter-free design – one that is easily recognizable on small screens as well as big screens. 

Our best tip would be to place your logo right in the middle of the circle that will also give plenty of whitespaces.

Here are two of our favorites:

Williams Sonoma Youtube profile picture

Playstation Youtube profile photo

Do you notice how each one of the above designs uses contrasting color palettes while having plenty of white space? 

Using bold and bright shades for the background with a white logo immediately makes the image more impactful. This can also help users make out your profile picture when scrolling on their tiny mobiles too.


Being on YouTube can be a fun way to engage with your subscribers and make money while doing fun activities that you love. 

But before your viewers see your content or read comments, the first thing they’ll notice is your profile picture. So simply choosing something boring or badly cracked won’t do anything to make a good first impression.

With an easy-to-use and innovative design tool like Pixelied, getting YouTube profile picture size right won’t be a problem anymore. Not only do we have a plethora of professional and attention-grabbing images and illustrations, but even resizing will be a piece of cake.

Trust us; you’ll have the perfect YouTube profile picture ready in under 5 minutes.

The ideal YouTube picture size is just a small part of the big picture – it’s the designing of the image that is tricky.

But Pixelied has got you covered, so get working on your newest display image for YouTube by clicking here.