News

This Viral TikTok Shows Why It Can Be Good to Have a Bad Passport Photo

Sometimes being overly photogenic can actually work against you.

Tang Ming Tung/DigitalVision/Getty Images
Tang Ming Tung/DigitalVision/Getty Images
Tang Ming Tung/DigitalVision/Getty Images

When I went to get my passport photo taken, I primped and pampered for nearly two hours. I did a face mask, used my best moisturizer, and carefully followed the guidance of a makeup artist on TikTok to expertly apply my contour and blush in a way that would give me the best “passport makeup.” After blowing out my hair, practicing my smize, and treating the Walgreen’s photo session like my personal runway, I managed to achieve a really flattering photo for my passport. Mission accomplished. For the next 10 years I’d have a-totally-not-embarrassing image to flash at TSA agents and customs.

Except… When I’m traveling, I couldn’t look further from the version of myself who spent two hours carefully applying an ultra subtle fox eyeliner look with a dusky brown pencil. No, typically, I am sweaty, close to tears, battling an oily t-zone that could probably fuel a diesel truck, and sporting at least three ambiguous stains on my sweatshirt from trying to drink a coffee and pull my carry-on simultaneously. Most days, I look like a completely different person.I am not alone in this, thankfully. It seems like a whole bunch of us saw those passport makeup tutorials and went ham. And it turns out, my worst fear is possible: looking so much different from my cute passport picture that it actually causes an issue.

In a TikTok video posted over the weekend, creator @AlishaMarie exclaims “They almost didn’t let me on my flight because they said I don’t look like my passport.” She then proceeds to warn against having “hot passport photos” and displays her passport photo. 

While I personally can totally tell that Alisha in her passport photo and Alisha in real life are the same (it’s obviously the bangs that are the biggest difference), I do fear that in the future this will happen to me and I won’t make it through security. Nevertheless, the video has resonated. It has gotten over 7.6 million views and 1 million likes.

So, let my anxiety and Alisha’s TikTok be a lesson for anyone who still hasn’t gotten their passport renewed yet: make your hot passport photo a little less sexy. As long as you still look like you in the photo, your passport cannot be rejected. But still, I personally don’t desire the deeply humbling “Wait this is you?” up down up down look from a TSA agent. I mean c’mon, they are already about to x-ray my underwear. And also, hurry up and get your passport application in! Processing times are only getting longer.

Looking for more travel tips?

Whether you need help sneaking weed onto a plane, finding an airport where you can sign up for PreCheck without an appointment, or making sure you’re getting everything you’re entitled to when your flight is canceled, we’ve got you covered. Keep reading for up-to-date travel hacks and all the travel news you need to help you plan your next big adventure.Want more Thrillist? Follow us on InstagramTikTokTwitterFacebookPinterest, and YouTube.

Opheli Garcia Lawler is a Staff Writer on the News team at Thrillist. Follow her on Twitter @opheligarcia and Instagram @opheligarcia.

News

Mad Mex’s New Menu Item Is Inspired by a Popular Mexican Street Food

mad mex chicken al pastor

Mexican restaurant chain Mad Mex has dropped a new protein, and it’s one of the most popular street foods in Mexico.

Enter, Chicken Al Pastor. It’s traditionally made with pork and grilled on a spinning rotisserie with a pineapple sitting a top, but Mad Mex has put its own spin on it, serving chicken bathed in an Al Pastor marinade with a touch of juicy pineapple.

You can order the protein-packed filling in your favourite burrito, bowl, quesadilla, nachos, or in a taco.

As always, these things are here for a good time, not a long time. Pop into your local Mad Mex restaurant, order delivery or through the Mad Mex app today.

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