Where to Find & Add Photos in the Messages App on the iPhone

Adding a picture to a text message in Apple's Messages app used to be quick and easy; you just tapped the little camera icon to the left of the text field, chose an image, or multiple images, to attach, and sent your text as usual. If you're stumped, here's how to add a photo to a text message on your iPhone. Starting with iOS 12, the familiar process for sending photos in Messages has changed: The camera icon is still there, but it only offers the option to take a new image to send and accessing your Photos app from there requires a second step. Don't worry though, it's still very simple to send images from the Photos app on your iPhone; let's learn the new way right now!

* This post is part of iPhone Life's Tip of the Day newsletter. . *

Related: How to Hide Text Messages on iPhone by Hiding iMessages or Using a Secret Texting App

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To add a picture from the Photos app in a message on your iPhone:

  • Open the Messages app and either start a new message thread, or continue a thread you've already started.
  • If you don't see the Messages app bar, tap the App Store icon to open it.
  • If you only see a gray arrow, tap the arrow then tap the App Store icon.
  • Next tap the Photos app icon within the app bar.
  • You can scroll through recent photos
  • Or you can select All Photos to find older ones.
  • Tapping All Photos opens your Photos app.
  • Tap on the photos you wish to send.
  • You'll have to tap Choose to add them to your text message. 
  • You can add one photo, or choose several.
  • The photos you select will appear in the text entry box.
  • If you accidentally select a photo you don't want to share, tap the X in the upper left corner of the photo to remove it. 
  • When you're finished selecting your photos, tap the send icon (upward pointing arrow in a circle) to send your text as usual.

Adding photos to text messages can make any conversation that much better!

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Author Details

Leanne Hays's picture

Author Details

Leanne Hays

Leanne Hays is an SEO Content Strategist and Feature Writer at iPhone Life, and has written hundreds of in-depth how-to and troubleshooting articles. She's a former Associate Editor for iPhone Life magazine, and has written for the Iowa Source, as well as web content for education marketing. Leanne has an associate's degree in education, with a focus on curriculum development, as well as a bachelor's degree in science. She has over nine years of experience with SEO, social media management, and web development and writing. Despite years of web work, Leanne is by no means an early adapter; she's only owned a smartphone for five years, which makes her highly sympathetic to the learning curve of new iPhone owners. She enjoys making reader's lives easier and putting her education experience to work by walking them through the most practical ways to use Apple devices, step-by-step.

In off-work hours, Leanne is a mother of two, homesteader, audiobook fanatic, musician, and learning enthusiast.