Delete photos or recover deleted ones in Photos on Mac
When you delete photos and videos from your library, they’re placed in the Recently Deleted album, where they remain for the number of days shown, and then are permanently deleted. You can restore items before that period of time. If you have iCloud Photos turned on, you can restore photos and videos from iCloud for 30 days before they’re removed from iCloud and your Mac. If you’re not using iCloud Photos, your deleted photos are removed from your Mac only. You can also manually delete photos from the Recently Deleted album to remove them immediately from your computer and iCloud.
Tip: If you’re deleting photos to free up storage space, remember that you must also delete them from the Recently Deleted album to remove them from your computer.
Delete photos and videos
In the Photos app on your Mac, select the photos you want to delete.
Do one of the following:
Delete photos from a moment: Press Delete, then click Delete. The selected photos are deleted from your library and placed in the Recently Deleted album.
Delete photos from an album, but not from your library: Press Delete. The selected photos are deleted from the album only and they remain your library.
Delete photos from a Smart Album (for example, Last Import, Favorites, or Videos): Press Command-Delete. The selected photos are deleted from your library and placed in the Recently Deleted album.
Delete photos and then permanently remove them from the Recently Deleted album: Press Command-Delete, then open the Recently Deleted album. Select the items you want to delete permanently, click Delete, then click OK.
Restore recently deleted items
You can view recently deleted items and restore them to your Photos library.
In the Photos app on your Mac, click Recently Deleted below Albums in the sidebar.
Select the photos you want to restore.
If you use Time Machine to back up your computer, you may be able to recover items after they are deleted permanently from your Mac or iCloud. See Restore a Photos library from Time Machine.