How to Delete Pictures on Mac: A General Guide

Deleting pictures on Mac can be quite a daunting task, especially if you have a large collection of photos and videos. Whether you want to get rid of duplicate files or create more space on your hard drive, deleting pictures on your Mac can help streamline your photo library. In this article, we will guide you through the step-by-step process of deleting pictures on your Mac. Keep reading to learn how!


Step 1: Open Finder

The first step in deleting photos on your Mac is to open the Finder. This can be done by clicking on the blue face icon on your dock or by clicking on the Finder icon in your applications folder.

Step 2: Locate the Pictures Folder

Once you have opened Finder, navigate to the Pictures folder. This is where all of your photos and videos are stored.

Step 3: Select the Pictures You Want to Delete

Using your mouse or trackpad, select the pictures you want to delete by clicking on them while holding down the command key. You can select multiple pictures by holding down the command key and clicking on each picture.

Step 4: Move to Trash

Once you have selected the pictures you want to delete, right-click on one of them and select “Move to Trash” from the drop-down menu.

Step 5: Empty the Trash

After moving the pictures to the trash, you must empty the trash to permanently delete them from your Mac. To do this, simply click on the trash icon in your dock, then click on “Empty Trash.”

Step 6: Use Third-Party Apps to Delete Photos

If you have a large number of pictures to delete, it can be time-consuming to go through them one by one using the above method. In this case, you might want to use a third-party app like CleanMyMac, Gemini, or PhotoSweeper to help you delete pictures more efficiently.

Step 7: Delete Photos From iCloud

If you have iCloud enabled on your Mac, you may also need to delete pictures from your iCloud account to free up space. To do this, open the Photos app, click on “Photos” in the top menu bar, then select “Preferences.” From there, click on “iCloud” and select “Optimize Mac Storage” or “Download Originals to this Mac” to manage your iCloud storage.

Step 8: Delete Photos From External Drives

If you store your photos and videos on an external hard drive, you may need to delete them from there as well to free up space. Simply locate the pictures on your external drive, select them, and move them to the trash as described above.

Step 9: Use Keyboard Shortcuts

If you prefer using keyboard shortcuts to navigate your Mac, you can use the command + delete keys to move selected photos to the trash. You can also use the command + shift + delete keys to skip the trash and delete photos permanently.

Step 10: Clear Your Recently Deleted Folder

When you delete photos from your Mac, they are sent to the Recently Deleted folder, where they remain for 30 days. If you want to free up space immediately, you can manually clear your Recently Deleted folder by opening it, selecting the photos you want to delete, and clicking on “Delete All.”

Step 11: Use Siri to Delete Photos

If you have a Mac with Siri enabled, you can use voice commands to delete photos. Simply say “Hey Siri, delete photos” or “Hey Siri, delete all pictures from my Mac” to get started.

Step 12: Restore Deleted Photos

If you accidentally deleted photos on your Mac and want to restore them, you can do so by opening the Recently Deleted folder, selecting the photos you want to restore, and clicking on “Recover.”


Now that we have gone through the 12 steps on how to delete pictures on your Mac, let’s explore some more details.

Deleting photos on your Mac is a simple process and can be done in a variety of ways, depending on your needs. You can select individual photos using your mouse or trackpad, or use keyboard shortcuts for a faster and more efficient way of deleting several photos at once.

Third-party apps can also be a useful tool for deleting photos in bulk. Apps like CleanMyMac, Gemini, and PhotoSweeper are designed to quickly search for and delete duplicate photos, as well as other unnecessary files on your Mac to free up storage space.

If you have iCloud enabled on your Mac, it’s also important to manage your iCloud storage to ensure you are not running out of space. You can choose to optimize your iCloud photo library for storage, or manually download all originals to your Mac for safekeeping.

Knowing how to use voice commands with Siri and keyboard shortcuts can save time when deleting photos on your Mac. Additionally, clearing your Recently Deleted folder is a great way to free up space immediately and ensure that all deleted photos are removed permanently from your Mac.

Tips and Tricks

1. Use Time Machine to Back Up Your Photos

Backing up your photos using Time Machine is a great way to ensure they are not lost in the event of a computer crash or hardware failure.

2. Use a Second External Hard Drive for Extra Storage

If you have a large collection of photos and videos, consider using a second external hard drive to store them for extra space.

3. Create a Tags Folder for Easy Organization

Creating a tags folder within the Photos app can make it easier to organize and find your photos.

4. Consider Cloud Storage for Large Photo Libraries

Cloud storage options like Google Photos, iCloud, and Dropbox can be a great way to store large photo libraries without taking up space on your Mac.

5. Delete Photos Regularly to Free Up Space

It’s important to delete photos regularly to ensure that you always have enough space on your Mac. Use the steps outlined in this article to help you delete photos efficiently.

6. Review Your Photos Periodically

Reviews your photos periodically can help you to determine if you need to delete them. Sometimes you no longer want the pictures or they no longer hold the same significance as they once did.

7. Use a Professional Service to Scan Your Old Photos and Preserve Them

Consider using a professional scanning service to digitize your old photos and preserve them for future generations.

8. Use a VPN to Protect Your Privacy

When storing photos in the cloud or on third-party services, use a VPN to encrypt your internet connection and protect your privacy.

9. Share Your Photos with Friends and Family

Share your photos with friends and family using social media or email to make sure they are not lost with time.

10. Use Labels and Keywords to Keep Track of Your Photos

Labels and keywords can be used to keep track of your photos. This makes it easier to search for them and categorize them in the future.

And that’s it! We hope this guide has helped you to learn how to delete pictures on your Mac. Remember to delete photos regularly and keep your hard drive clean to ensure that your Mac runs smoothly. Use the tips and tricks listed above to help make the process of deleting photos easier and more efficient!

Advantages and Disadvantages of Deleting Pics on Mac


1. Free up storage space – When you delete pictures on your Mac, you open up space for new files and applications.

2. Enhanced organization – If your pictures are cluttering up your Mac, deleting them can help you stay organized and streamline your computer’s performance.

3. Improved privacy – Deleting personal pictures from your Mac can help protect your privacy and prevent others from accessing your sensitive information.

4. Improved speed – When your Mac has less data to store, it can improve the speed and performance of your computer.

5. Protect your Mac from viruses – Removing pictures can help protect your Mac from viruses and other malware attacks, since these malicious files often hide in photos and videos.

6. Reduce backup time – If you’re using an online backup service, deleting pictures can help reduce backup time and speed up the process.

7. Improved user experience – Deleting pictures can help you better navigate and use your computer, making for a smoother user experience overall.

8. Peace of mind – Removing personal or sensitive pictures can give you peace of mind and help you feel more secure in your online activities.

9. Easier sharing – Deleting unnecessary or outdated pictures can make it easier to share and move files between devices.

10. Save money – By deleting pictures, you may be able to avoid purchasing an external hard drive or upgrading your storage capacity.


1. Accidental deletion – One of the biggest risks of deleting pictures on your Mac is accidentally deleting something important or irreplaceable.

2. Permanent loss – Once you delete a picture, it’s gone forever unless you have a backup copy.

3. Time-consuming – If you have a lot of pictures to delete, the process can be time-consuming and tedious.

4. Sentimental value – Some pictures may have sentimental value, even if they’re not particularly important for work or personal use.

5. Sharing issues – If you delete pictures that others have access to, it may cause issues for your friends, family, or colleagues who rely on those photos as well.

6. Potential legal issues – If you’re deleting pictures that contain sensitive or confidential information, you may be at risk for legal issues if those files are discovered.

7. Emotional stress – Deleting pictures can also be emotionally stressful, especially if they’re tied to memories or events that are hard to let go of.

8. Loss of creativity – If pictures are a source of creativity or inspiration, deleting them may stifle your ability to create new work.

9. Dependence on technology – Relying on technology to store or delete pictures may make it harder to trust your own memory and emotional intuition.

10. Limitations on storage – If you continually delete pictures to free up space, you may eventually hit a limit on your storage capacity. This can make it more difficult to store new files or media in the future.


1. Do deleted pictures on Mac get permanently erased?

No, deleted pictures on Mac are not permanently erased until they are emptied from the trash.

2. How do I delete pictures on Mac?

You can delete pictures on Mac by selecting them and pressing the “Command + Delete” keys or dragging them to the trash bin.

3. What happens when I delete pictures on Mac?

When you delete pictures on Mac, they are moved to the trash bin where they remain until you empty the trash or restore the files.

4. How do I access the trash bin on Mac?

You can access the trash bin on Mac by clicking on the trash bin icon in the dock or by opening it from the Finder.

5. Can I recover deleted pictures on Mac?

Yes, you can recover deleted pictures on Mac if you haven’t emptied the trash bin or overwritten the files.

6. How do I empty the trash bin on Mac?

You can empty the trash bin on Mac by right-clicking on the trash bin icon and selecting “Empty Trash” or by pressing “Command + Shift + Delete” keys.

7. Can I delete pictures permanently on Mac?

Yes, you can delete pictures permanently on Mac by using a third-party application that securely removes the files or by using the terminal command.

8. What happens to the pictures if I use the secure delete option?

When you use the secure delete option, the files are overwritten several times with random data, making them almost impossible to recover.

9. How do I recover permanently deleted pictures on Mac?

You cannot recover permanently deleted pictures on Mac as they have been securely erased and overwritten.

10. Can I delete pictures from iPhoto on Mac?

Yes, you can delete pictures from iPhoto on Mac by selecting the photos and pressing the “Command + Delete” keys or by dragging them to the trash bin.

11. How do I delete duplicates of pictures on Mac?

You can delete duplicates of pictures on Mac by using a third-party application or by manually searching for and deleting them.

12. How do I free up space on Mac by deleting pictures?

You can free up space on Mac by deleting pictures that you no longer need or by moving them to an external hard drive or cloud storage.

13. Is it safe to delete pictures on Mac?

Yes, it is safe to delete pictures on Mac as long as you are sure that you no longer need them and have backed up any important files.

How to Delete Pics on Mac

Are you running out of storage space on your Mac due to an overwhelming collection of pictures? Deleting them is the solution. However, removing them from your computer can be a bit tricky, especially if you’re new to the Mac operating system. In this guide, we’ll show you how to delete pics on your Mac in a few simple steps.


Mac is a user-friendly operating system that makes it easy to manage and organize your files, including pictures. Removing unwanted photos frees up space on your hard drive, making it faster and more efficient. Following our guide above, you can delete your pictures without worrying about losing important files. We hope that this article has been helpful and that you’ll find it easier to delete pictures from your Mac. Check out our website for more tips and guides.

Until next time, happy deleting!