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Things You Need to Know about

Liza Brown
Liza Brown Originally published Sep 02, 22, updated Mar 27, 24
pexels 4k

There is a great way to make your messages more impactful that is free to use. Pexels is an online creative assets library that features high-resolution photos, including Pexels 4k, and an assortment of audio clips you can use in your creations.

The following are things you need to know about It includes details on what Pexels is, important user information, and other hidden features of the website. Keep reading to find out more.

In this article
  1. Part1: Is free to use?
  2. Part2: What can Pexels provide you?
    1. 1. 4K images for almost all topics
    2. 2. Audio
    3. 3. Video
  3. Part3: What's Leaderboard and Challenges on
  4. Part4: What are not allowed on Pexels?
    1. 1. It can't be used in a political context
    2. 2. Resell the resources
  5. Part5: FAQs

Part1: Is free to use?

Yes, is a free online library of stock photos that you can use for personal or commercial purposes with your creations. In addition, photographers submit their images to the platform to allow others to reuse them.

Pexels' free download policy allows you to obtain images under the Pexels or Creative common licensing rules. In addition, both licenses allow you to use Pexels images and videos for personal and commercial purposes, provided you make alterations to the original.

According to the site's founders, the following are the reasons why the site is free:

  • Its main source of revenue is selling advertisement slots to other paid-content databases.
  • You can also donate to the website's operational costs with a single click. In addition, there is no limitation on how much and how often you can donate.
  • Most of the site's contributors do so willingly to increase their brand exposure. For example, a verified user states that uploading his content to Pexels 4k and Pexels audio has resulted in an influx of high-paying customers.

So, what is the difference between paid and stock photo sites? Paid content databases such as Shutterstock and Deposit photos require you to create a user ID and subscribe to their service. Conversely, stock photo sites like feature free stock images and videos that you can use with minimal restrictions.

For example, the site allows you to use its content on YouTube for personal or commercial reasons, provided you make adjustments to the original asset, and you own the video. In addition, the site's library features content that its contributors share willingly. As such, you can download content from these sites without creating an account or acknowledging the image owner.

Currently, you can access Pexels through your web browser or download the app on your Android or iOS device. In addition, you can also access the asset library through the Canva application following their merger. Furthermore, you can also download it as a plugin for different content creation software, including Photoshop, MS Office, and Google Slides.

Part2: What can Pexels provide you?

Now that you are aware of's origin story and access methods, here is a rundown of what free access provides you.

1. 4K images for almost all topics features a dedicated library of over 40,000 4k images from their contributors. You can access the library by typing 4k in the site's search engine. In addition, the library is full of 4k images across various topics, including niche subjects such as Nebula and Abstract. Furthermore, the site's search engine uses search tags to provide more accurate results. For example, by typing 4K Dark in the search engine, the site can narrow down your search to provide more relevant results.

2. Audio

You also get access to Pexels audio, a collection of over 8000 audio clips from the site's numerous contributors. In addition, all of the Pexels audio's content is completely free to use for all users. Currently, you can only access the database through your web browser and the iOS app.

3. Video

Another content category that your free access provides you is Pexels video. The database features a collection of over 2000 video clips you can use for your commercial or personal works. In addition, offers various editing tools to make alterations immediately. Furthermore, you also have templates for different content configurations, including social media and YouTube posts.

Part3: What's Leaderboard and Challenges on


The Pexels free download leaderboard is a list of the site's top contributors within the past thirty days. The ranking is based on the number of views of photos and videos you submit within thirty days. For example, you earn the top spot if you receive the most views to your content, provided it is less than thirty days old. As such, each contributor has an equal chance of rising to the top, provided they put in the effort.


On the other hand, Pexels challenges are monthly competitions where contributors submit their best work to win different prizes. Typically, each challenge varies in the category, prizes, and content specifications. For example, the most recent challenge required contributors to upload images projecting friendship.

In addition, there is no limitation to the number of eligible uploads because challenge officials consider all of them. Finally, all images you submit for the Pexels challenge fall under the Pexels license, meaning they are free to use by the site's visitors.

Part4: What are not allowed on Pexels?

Currently, all of the Pexels creative assets are under the Pexels license, a variation to the creative commons zero license other stock photo sites offer. Although you can access and download the site's assets for free, there are some restrictions on your usage of them. Here is what's free download license does not allow you to do with its assets.

1. It can't be used in a political context

You cannot use Pexels free download videos, images, and audio clips in a political context. This is because some of the assets include identifiable people, and using their image may be seen as their endorsement of your political beliefs. In addition, the situation becomes worse if your ideology contains offensive material and messaging.

Furthermore, the Pexels license also bans using their creative assets to promote your personal brand, especially when they contain any identifiable imagery. By doing so, remains a free resource for people of all creeds, regardless of their political affiliations.

2. Resell the resources

Another thing you cannot do when using is to resell their photos and videos to other stock photograph platforms. Most users attribute this to the site's owners wanting to maintain a fresher database than its competitors.

In addition, you can also consider the restriction as a way to prevent duplication of results on web searches and prevent the overuse of creative assets. As such, you cannot use their creative assets on items such as print media and physical goods, including T-shirts and mugs.

Part5: FAQs

Why should you create a Pexels account? seeks to create a simple and fast medium for you to discover free photos and videos. It does so by providing a common platform where contributors can share their work with a greater audience. Here are some of the benefits of creating a account:

  • You can create collections for different projects, accessible on different dashboards.
  • Continuous free access to every creative asset you have ever downloaded. For example, you can access all images you have downloaded from Pexels 4K.
  • You also get a custom homepage that features your latest work and database favorites.
  • In addition, you will have access to the site's community, which has helpful information for all users.

What are the rules for uploading videos on

Here are the requirements for uploading videos on

  • Your videos must be of resolution 1920 X 1080 and higher.
  • All videos should be free of explicit content such as nudity or violence.
  • Your videos should not feature any watermarks, branding, or borders.
  • The recording and scene transitions should be seamless.
  • The site does not permit the uploading of animations.

What are the image uploading requirements on

Pexels free download accepts images in JPEG format only. In addition, your images must also meet the following conditions.

  • All photos need to be at least 4 megapixels and have a minimum resolution of 2592 X 1520 pixels.
  • Your images should not contain any explicit material. All photos with graphic nudity and violence are banned from the website.
  • Your photos should be well-oriented and should not include watermarks, text elements, or borders when uploading them to your account.

Does accept uploading of mobile photos?

Yes. Using the app, you can upload images from your smartphone's internal storage directly to In addition, other requirements must be met before your photo is approved. You can find out more from the upload guidelines on

What alterations can you make to use Pexels photos on your merchandise?

Pexels allows you to use its images for personal and commercial reasons if you alter them and make them your own. Some of the alterations the site recommends include:

  • Adding graphic elements to the images using's editing tool.
  • Using part of the Pexels image in a greater project such as a collage or wallpaper.
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Liza Brown
Liza Brown Mar 27, 24
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