How to Unlock Your Phone With Face ID While Wearing a Mask

Wearing a mask is so important in order to keep you and those around you safe, but is it just me or is one of the most annoying aspects of wearing a mask the fact that your iPhone's Face ID can't recognize you in it?! Sometimes I'm running errands and need to check a message quickly, but I can't because I somehow keep forgetting my phone can't register my face while I'm wearing a mask. I then have to press in my four-digit passcode, which I'll admit takes hardly any time or work, but I've loved how the Face ID on my iPhone 11 can usually unlock itself without me having to do anything.

Because I've experienced this ongoing frustration, coming across @camillamalm's TikTok on how to unlock your phone while wearing a mask thrilled me. You basically set up a new Face ID with your mask on, and even better, doing so only takes a few steps. If you'd like to set up a new Face ID, here's how:

  1. First, go to the "Settings" app and press "Face ID & Passcode."
  2. Next, press "Set Up an Alternate Appearance."
  3. Put your mask on one half of your face by folding it in half and putting both loops on one ear, then hold the mask by your chin to keep it tight. Your phone will then prompt you to move your face around for a few seconds.
  4. Lastly, put the mask on the other side of your face, and follow the prompts again. That's all the work this simple change requires!

Here are two things to remember when setting up and using this hack: first, since your phone can't detect the bottom half of your face as easily with your mask on, it'll pay more attention to your eyes. So, something as subtle as smiling or wearing glasses that fogged up from your breathing could interfere with the alternate Face ID working properly. Second, you may have to try these steps several times for the hack to work, according to @camillamalm and commenters. Repeating these steps and keeping small details in check can be bothersome, but I think it's worth being able to unlock your phone more easily!

I'm thankful for many iPhone hacks I've discovered on TikTok, but I'm especially grateful for this one. Not only does it take fewer than five steps, but it also allows me to unlock my phone like usual, even when I'm wearing a mask.