I have a rather odd issue. I'm running in a Mac/PC environment at work. When I email an image (JPG or PNG) to someone from Outlook 2011 Mac and they open in Outlook for PC (2010), the picture always ends up "washed out" or "faded."

This even occurs on the image signature I designed. Any ideas on what's causing this and how to resolve it? I'd rather not pop into Parallels every time I need to send an email.


  • What does it look like if they send it back to you?
    – Tetsujin
    May 13, 2015 at 16:56
  • @Tetsujin On the Mac side, it looks fine, but when I pull it up in Outlook, it's faded. To make things even odder, I sent a PNG and a JPG with a JPG signature from Outlook 2011 Mac. The PNG image and the JPG Signature were washed out, while the JPG in the message body was fine.
    – ghostof101
    May 13, 2015 at 17:15
  • @Buscar웃 It doesn't matter the image size. For example, my .jpg signature is 56 kilobytes.
    – ghostof101
    May 13, 2015 at 17:16
  • still inconclusive, but my guess is that one or the other of then is using a native profile [whether or not the correct one is harder to determine] & the other is using something like sRGB instead. How to determine which is which, I'm afraid I have no clue in anything MS, sorry. The test really, is to send an image, have them send it back. If it looks the same as the one you sent, not the one they got, then my theory is broadly correct.
    – Tetsujin
    May 13, 2015 at 17:20
  • @Tetsujin When they send it back, it's perfect.
    – ghostof101
    May 13, 2015 at 17:40

8 Answers 8


I've been trying to figure this out at work and here is what I've learned.

Some PCs are prone to see a faded image when others don't, so be sure to test on a number of PCs (try to find the weakest link).

When a Mac user copies a PNG and paste it into his email signature or the body of an email, this error occurs.

I have to send out a company wide email signature, so here's what we do.

Have a PC user draft the email signature, placing the actual JPEG images. When that email is sent out, a Mac user can copy and paste it and it should work.


I had this same issue but with my signature and here is that I did.

I manually saved the image to my computer, then dragged it into the email signature field and it went through just fine and was not faded.

I don't know why it does this but I reproduced it a number of times.


I had the same problem. I made a test mail with the image in the message and in the signature and the images in the signature had a different (wrong) color despite being all the same image file.
I fixed it by deleting the the image in the signature and dragging a new one from the finder into the signature edit window.
The other suggestions found online by editing the signature in Word and copy/paste it in the signature does not work, it only helps with adding styling to the text in your signature.

I find it weird that Outlook for Mac does not have a decent edit window for the signature like the PC version.

  • To add insult to injury, Office 2016 for Mac does the EXACT SAME THING.
    – ghostof101
    Nov 30, 2015 at 16:58

I get this issue often. I screen clip an image from powerpoint or excel, paste to Mac Outlook. I notice that sometimes my WinPC friends get very washed out images. Mac friends see the image fine. I have worked out that a copy of a copy to Mac Outlook causes the issue. I copy an image from PPT to Mac Outlook, send then later try and forward or copy it out and send again, that is when I get the issue.

So to solve the problem: Copy directly from Screen Capture to Mac Outlook and send.


Had the same issue but the drag-n-drop solution didn't work for me.

What eventually worked was to get to the signature settings through Outlook -> Preferences (⌘ + ,) and then Signatures. Previously, I was always getting there from the Signatures drop-down inside a New Email window. Copy/pasting in the former resulted in perfect PNG rendering on emails sent to PCs when the same operation on the latter would result in a washed out image...

I don't know what difference this can possibly make but it did it for me!

I'm running Outlook 2016 (v15.21.1 build 160411)


I just ran the original image trough Irfanview and saved it again... this eliminated the mac-bit that delegates how strong the image is shown ... since we have the image on a fileshare that is locally available for all users nothing had to change in the signatures...
After the re-save with irfanview we were also troublefree with outlook mac vs outlook windows signatures...

so people which say that saving the image on a pc didn't work; are obviously doing something wrong...


The only way I could address it was to create the signature in Microsoft Word on the Mac side of the House. Edit, Copy, Paste that into the entry Box in Edit Signatures.



Have a PC user draft the email signature, placing the actual JPEG images. When that email is sent out, a Mac user can copy and paste it and it should work.This is method is good.

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