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Frequently Asked Questions

What is Mug Life?


Mug Life applies the latest advances in computer vision to instantly create stunning photo-real clones of friends, family, and celebrities.  You don't have to be technical or artistic.  All it takes is a photo.


You can download community animations and paste them to any photo, or just have fun playing with faces. When inspiration strikes, you can create your own animations and memes.


Export and share your creations as high definition videos, stills, animated GIFs, and animated Facebook avatars.


We can't wait to see what you come up with!

Is Mug Life free?


Yes!  You can apply the effects to your photos for free, similar to other free photo apps.  There is also an optional in-app purchase for advanced tools.

The only way to be charged is if you decide to purchase Pro Tools, using the standard iOS or Android purchase process with multiple confirmation steps.


How can I get best quality results with Mug Life?


For best results, start with a high resolution image facing roughly forward with a fairly neutral expression.  Hand tuning the alignment (under Face Tools) also helps.

If pre-made animations appear unnatural on a particular face, you can tune them to be more natural with Pose controls.

When using Performance Mode on the iPhone X series, the TrueDepth sensor works best in bright lighting.

Do my photos stay private?


You decide whether to make your photos public or private.

If you choose Save Public, your photo will then be uploaded and be visible to other Mug Life users.  If you choose Save Private, your photo will not be uploaded, and it will not be visible to other Mug Life users.

You can switch a Mug between Public and Private at any time.  If you change a Mug to Private or Delete a Mug (Tap-Hold, Trash Can), it will be deleted from our servers.  While a Mug is Public, another user may download or copy it.

Because only Public Mugs get uploaded to our servers, only Public Mugs will be synced between your devices.  Also, only Public Mugs will appear in the Featured, Trending, or Top Muggers lists.

How do I delete Mugs?


1) Go to My Mugs.

2) Tap-Hold the Mug you want to delete.

3) (Optional) Select additional Mugs that you want to delete.

4) Tap the Trash Can button.

5) Confirm to delete.

This will delete the Mug from your device.  If the Mug is public, it will also be deleted from our servers.

Does Mug Life capture, store, or transmit biometric data?


No.  Mug life works based on single 2D photos.  It does not scan, store, or transmit 3D face geometry.


Mug Life does do intensive 3D computations solely for the purpose of lifelike rendering and animation, but the intermediate 3D geometry approximations are not scanned, stored, or transmitted.

What is the difference between Creative Mode and Performance Mode, and what is included in Pro Tools?

The free portion of Mug Life lets you instantly apply effects to your own photos, similar to other popular free photo apps.


Pro Tools unlocks full access to all Mug Life's power tools, including Creative Mode and (for newer devices) Performance Mode.

Creative Mode gives full custom control over face alignment (including non-human subjects), designing animations, and custom text.

Performance Mode is for making live performances, like Animoji from any photo.  Mug Life works great on most iOS or Android phones and tablets, but Performance Mode requires a device with a TrueDepth camera.  That includes iPhone X, XS, XS Max, XR, 11, or 2018+ iPad Pro models.

Any Pro Tools purchase problems?


If your purchase doesn't go through the first time, try again.  It is impossible to be charged for Pro Tools twice, so there is no need to worry about that.

Occasionally, it is necessary to completely power off your device and power it back on to reset the device's purchasing system.

For iOS devices, if you already purchased Pro Tools on another device with the same Apple ID, use Restore Purchase.

You can check your iOS purchase history here:
You can check your Android purchase history here:

If you're still having trouble, please contact us at support (at)!

Any network problems?

Mug Life may not function if your device is unable to reach the Internet.

The most common source of network problems is a firewall blocking communication.  When using public Wi-fi, you may need to go to Safari and agree to a web page before it will allow you to access the Internet.  Some office firewalls interfere with secure communication, which can cause problems for Mug Life.


On phones, try disabling Wi-fi to see if Mug Life will work over a cellular connection.  If that fixes the problem, you know that the Wi-fi network's firewall was blocking communication.  In that case, you can keep using cellular, find a different Wi-fi network, use a VPN to bypass the firewall, or figure out how to solve the problem on the Wi-fi network.


If your device's clock is set wrong, that can sometimes cause communication problems.  Under iOS Settings - General - Date & Time, enable Set Automatically.  If that was disabled, you may need to terminate and restart Mug Life.


In some cases, terminating and restarting Mug Life may resolve a network problem.  You can see how to terminate an app here:

Mug Life isn't detecting a face on my pet/artwork/non-photo/non-human.  How can I animate it?

Mug Life's automatic face detection was trained on photos of humans.  Mug Life can give very cool and interesting results with other types of images, but they usually require manual alignment.  You can see how that works here:

In order to do manual alignment for Performance Mode (Perform button), first save the Mug with manual alignment in Creative Mode (Create button.)

Why don't my GIFs animate?


Most social networks don't support GIF uploads.  Videos work a lot better on most social networks.


GIFs usually do work best for e-mail.  When sharing GIFs to e-mail, if iOS prompts you for the resolution, make sure you select Actual Size.  If you select a smaller size, iOS will convert the GIF to a static JPG.

Some older phones don't support GIFs in text messages.

When sharing GIFs to your Camera Roll, iOS 10's Photos app displays the GIF as a still image, but the actual file is still an animated GIF.  You can still share GIFs from Photos to e-mails, text messages, the clipboard, or any other destination with animated GIF support.

Starting with iOS 11, Apple's Photos app added improved animated GIF support.  When you select animated GIFs they will spring to life in nice loops!

I'm having trouble tapping the top buttons on my OnePlus/Xaomi/LG phone

We're having some problems with the way certain Android phones handle the notch on the top of the display area. We are working on a fix, but here are some quick work-arounds, in the meantime:


1) Go to phone Settings - Display - Notch Display and select Hide the notch area.
2) Terminate the Mug Life app (using Android task view - no need to uninstall)
3) Run Mug Life again, and it should work.


1) Go to phone Settings - Display - System - Notch & status bar.
2) Tap Hide Notch.
3) Terminate the Mug Life app (using Android task view - no need to uninstall)
4) Run Mug Life again, and it should work.

How do I export my Mugs with the highest resolution and quality?


Video files are much higher resolution and better quality, compared to GIFs, so use videos when you want to maximize quality.  You can share to the camera roll or e-mail to export video files.


In order to insure 1920x1080 resolution, create your Mug from a 1920x1080 image.  Higher resolutions and different aspect ratios get downsampled automatically.

How can I get Featured?


The best ways to be featured are to get up on the Trending list or to post great Mugs in featured hashtag categories.  Each featured hashtag is actually a separate trending list.  You can post to them by simply including that hashtag with your Mug.


How to I get up on Trending?


The Trending list is based on a blend of likes, shares, and recent views from other users.


Tips for boosting your post visibility:

  • Add relevant search tags when you post.

  • Connect with Facebook, so your friends will follow your posts inside of Mug Life.  (We'll never post on Facebook unless you tell us to.)

  • Share your work on social networks.

  • Add #muglifeapp to social media posts, in order to share your work with the Mug Life community.


How do I get up on the Top Muggers?


The Top Muggers list is based on lifetime views from other users.


The best strategy for getting higher on that list is to keep creating great Mugs.  Adding relevant tags will also help people see your Mug.  Every Mug you create contributes to your view count, so multiple recent good Mugs can add up quickly.


Please don't add non-relevant tags to your Mug.  That will lead to complaints, your Mugs getting unlisted, and potentially getting banned from posting.  Thank you!


What's the deal with all the Facebook options?


Mug Life does not require Facebook, but connecting with Facebook has some nice benefits:

  • Facebook can be used for authentication.  This provides a convenient and secure way to connect to the same account on multiple devices.  It also allows you to restore your account if you lose a device.  No need to create yet another account.

  • When you connect with Facebook in Mug Life, you can see public Mugs that your friends post under the Following gallery.  If you don't want to follow a friend, just deselect "Following" by their name.


We will never post anything to Facebook, except for times when you explicitly tell us to share to Facebook.

How can I sync/migrate my account between devices?


Originally logging in to Mug Life with Facebook insures that your devices will be in sync from the start.

If you logged in as a guest, you can sync your devices by following these steps (in order):

  •     First, connect the old (source) device to Facebook.

  •     Second, connect the new (destination) device to Facebook.


I don't have Facebook.  Is there any way I can sync/migrate between devices without Facebook?


While Facebook is the easiest and most reliable way to protect your account in Mug Life, we also support syncing accounts using the iCloud Keychain.  This can be a bit tricky to make sure it will work, depending on your keychain settings.

  1. If your devices are already on the same Mug Life account, you can stop here.  You are done!

  2. If Mug Life is already installed on the new (destination) device with a different account, delete it.  This will delete all the Mug Life data on that device and it may abandon its Mug Life account, so use caution.  We'll reinstall later with Mug Life on the same account.

  3. Go to the old (source) device.

  4. Under iOS Settings - [Your Name] - iCloud - Keychain - iCloud Keychain - Enable.

  5. If it wasn't already enabled, check the same place under Settings to insure that enabling iCloud Keychain is complete.  You may need to verify the action on another device.

  6. Terminate and restart the Mug Life app to force a fresh restart.  This will sync your Mug Life account to the iCloud Keychain.

  7. Following the same steps, enable the iCloud Keychain on your new (destination) device.

  8. Install Mug Life on the destination device, and log in as a Guest.

  9. The new device should find your account, using the keychain data.


If you have trouble with these steps, you may want to consider using the Facebook procedure, above.  Keep in mind that Facebook will let you set what data it will share with Mug Life, and we only use that data to provide you with extra features and better support.

How do I set my avatar/profile picture?


Connect Facebook in Mug Life to use your Facebook profile picture.


What does the language filter do?


The language filter hides Mugs where bad language was detected.  Filtering is enabled by default, but you can set your preference under Settings.

What are the Community Standards for posting in Mug Life?


Posting vulgar, violent, hateful, or illegal Mugs will result in a permanent ban from public posting in Mug Life.  If you see Mugs that violate this rule, please report them using the Gear button.  Please keep your shirtless photos private.

Are there any secret features?


You can type in these commands to the Mug Life search bar at the top of the screen to activate advanced "superuser" features:

su:idles - Toggles idle animations on/off.

su:limit - Toggles 30 second maximum animation limit on/off.

su:shake - Toggles handheld camera shake-look.

su:highres - Toggles high resolution and super sampling on Android for movie export. (May cause out of memory crash.)

I have feedback or ideas related for Mug Life.


We would very much appreciate your feedback!  Please e-mail us at feedback (at)

What is your policy about commercial use?  Can I sell my Mug Life creations?


We have no restrictions or fees for commercial use of your Mug Life creations.  We would appreciate some sort of credit to help spread the word about Mug Life, but that's not a requirement.

You are responsible for acquiring any necessary rights for images that you animate with Mug Life.  We can only grant you rights to use Mug Life software.


I have a business proposition involving Mug Life.


For serious inquiries, contact us at business (at)

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