There’s a case to be made for keeping your profile picture the same over the years, even if it means it’s not always up to date. The Founder and CEO of Product Hunt, Ryan Hoover, keeps his profile picture the same, saying, “On Twitter, your @username is secondary to your profile pic. People recognize you by your avatar. Once changed, followers need to re-associate the new photo with your person.”
While the safest bet is to use a photo of yourself, some people opt for cartoon avatars or an illustration.
This practice is more common if you’re already well known. Here are a few examples:
It’s also common to use an illustrated avatar if you’re demonstrating an affiliation with a well known company.
Notion employees use avatars in the same style:
New Yorker employees also have illustrated profile pictures in matching style:
If you don’t fall into one of these two categories, and your goal is to help people get to know you, it’s probably best to use a photo of yourself.