Looking for the best Leica portrait lenses? You are in the right place, here is the list of the 8 best Leica lenses for portrait photography that will make your subjects pop, with sample images.

Hi my name is Sven the Leicaphile and this is the list of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography. Leicas have a long history when it comes to both street photography and portraits. Some of the world’s most famous portraits, like the one of Che Guevarra have been shot on Leicas.

And now it’s your turn, if you want the best Leica portrait lenses, here they are below.

Best Leica lenses for portrait photography list

NameFocal LengthMax apertureGet it here:
1. Leica Summicron 75mm f/275mmf/2 Check Price
2. Leica Summilux 50mm f/1.450mmf/1.4 Check Price
3. Leica summicron 50mm f/250mmf/2 Check Price
4. Leica Summicron 90mm f/290mmf/2 Check Price
5. Leica Noctilux 75mm f/1.2575mmf/1.25 Check Price
6. Leica Noctilux 50mm f/0.9550mmf/0.95 Check Price
7. Leica Summilux 35mm f/1.435mmf/1.4 Check Price
8. Leica Summicron 35mm f/235mmf/2 Check Price

Now that we’ve seen the overview of the best Leica portrait lenses, let’s look at each and determine what makes them earn the spot in the list of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography.

1. Leica Summicron 75mm f/2

The ultimate Leica portrait lens

leica summicron 75mm f2 lens
Reasons to buyCons
+ Stunning image quality
+ Perfect focal length for portraits
+ Speedy
– None

Let’s start this list of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography with the Summicron 75. Ask any photographer what the best focal length is for portraits and the answer would probably be 75-100mm.

This Summicron lens is built for portraits. With a full frame Leica, that focal length at f/2 you have yourself some beautiful, creamy Bokeh coming your way.

leica summicron 75mm f2 portrait 1
[1]

2. Leica Summilux 50mm f/1.4

One of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography at 50mm

leica summilux 50mm f14 lens
Reasons to buyCons
+ Great IQ
+ Good focal length for portraits
+ Really fast
– None

As a general rule, if it says Summilux, you can add “portrait lens” to it. These are some of Leica’s sharpest and fastest lens and the 50mm really can blur the background. If you want a dedicated portrait lens, look at the 75mm, but if you are looking for the lens that can do everything on top of pulling great Bokeh and portraitrure then the 50mm f/1.4 is the answer.

leica summilux 50mm f14 portrait 1
[1]
leica summilux 50mm f14 portrait 2
[2]
leica summilux 50mm f14 portrait 3
[3]
leica summilux 50mm f14 portrait 4
[4]
leica summilux 50mm f14 portrait 5
[5]
leica summilux 50mm f14 portrait 6
[6]
leica summilux 50mm f14 portrait 7
[7]
leica summilux 50mm f14 portrait 8
[8]
leica summilux 50mm f14 portrait 9
Stunning Bokeh makes the Summilux 50mm one of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography [9]

3. Leica Summicron 50mm f/2

A bit slower but still one of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography

leica summicron 50mm f2 lens
Reasons to buyCons
+ Like the Summilux above
+ But cheaper
– None

When it comes to Leica lenses it is all about tradeoff. Here you have a more affordable lens then the Summilux 50 but you lose some of that speed to end up with a respectable f/2 lens.

Still amazing, still jaw dropping sharpness is included. And the Bokeh is just as strong so you can have some portraits with silky smooth, blurry backgrounds with the Summicron.

If you budget allows it, go for the Summilux, if not the Summicron is just as good and if you look at the image samples below, the Bokeh is very strong with this one.

leica summicron 50mm f2 portrait 1
[1]
leica summicron 50mm f2 portrait 2
[2]
leica summicron 50mm f2 portrait 3
[3]
leica summicron 50mm f2 portrait 4
[4]
leica summicron 50mm f2 portrait 5
[5]
leica summicron 50mm f2 portrait 6
Summicron 50mm sample image, one of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography [6]
leica summicron 50mm f2 portrait 7
[7]
leica summicron 50mm f2 portrait 8
[8]
leica summicron 50mm f2 portrait 9
[9]
leica summicron 50mm f2 portrait 10
[10]
leica summicron 50mm f2 portrait 11
[11]

4. Leica Summicron 90mm f/2

One of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography on the telephoto side

leica summicron 90mm f2 lens
Reasons to buyCons
+ Stunning images
+ Even better focal length for portraits then 50
+ Great Noctilux alternative
– Heavy

Since Leica lenses are prime lenses, if you do not mind that these lenses are entrenched in telephoto territory you have a great lens perfect for portraits. The 75-100mm range is the preferred focal length for many portrait photographers as it makes the face most flattering.

The other reason is also because of the bokeh, the longer the focal length of the lens the better and blurrier the Bokeh. The 90mm is not Leica’s longest telephoto but it will not disappoint when it comes to portraiture.

The fast f/2 makes it suitable for night portraiture too as you can see in the images below shot at night.

leica summicron 90mm f2 portrait 1
[1]
leica summicron 90mm f2 portrait 2
[2]
leica summicron 90mm f2 portrait 3
[3]
leica summicron 90mm f2 portrait 4
[4]
leica summicron 90mm f2 portrait 5
[5]
leica summicron 90mm f2 portrait 6
[6]
leica summicron 90mm f2 portrait 7
[7]
leica summicron 90mm f2 portrait 8
[8]

5. Leica Noctilux 75mm f/1.25

The fastest 75mm

leica noctilux 75mm f125 lens
Reasons to buyCons
+ Amazing lens all around
+ Head spinning beautiful Bokeh
+ Subjects pop in 3D
– Expensive

What happens if you take one of the best focal lengths for portraits, and made it even faster? The Summilux 75mm f/1.25 is what you get. It is one of the most expensive lenses on this list but this lens is capable of Bokeh so good it makes the subject almost pop like 3D.

It’s only rival is the Noctilux 0.95 below that have a shorter focal lenght but a faster aperture.

6. Leica Noctilux 50mm f/0.95

One of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography, if you can afford it

leica noctilux 50mm f095 lens
Reasons to buyCons
+ One of the fastest lenses in the world
+ Most amazing bokeh
+ Stunning image quality
– Crazy expensive

One of the fastest Leica lenses ever is also one of the best for portraits. It would be on top of this list if it wasn’t for the price that will only be attainable for a select few. The 0.95 is quite fast and stunning, and at that aperture you can bet that the Bokeh is one of the creamiest you can ever get on a Leica.

The advantage of this, besides making simply drop dead gorgeous portraits is the fact that your images are unique, because the lens rendering is unique.

Just like it’s 75mm brother, the subjects simply pop in a 3D manner as the lens is so sharp, just look for yourself in these Noctilux image samples:

leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 1
Noctilux 50mm f0.95 sample image [1]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 2
[2]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 3
[3]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 4
[4]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 5
[5]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 6
Smooth Bokeh makes the Noctilux one of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography [6]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 7
Noctilux 50mm f0.95 sample image [7] One of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 8
[8]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 9
[9]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 10
Noctilux 50mm f0.95 portrait [10]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 11
[11]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 12
[12]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 13
[13]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 14
[14]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 15
[15]
leica noctilux 50mm f095 portrait 16
[16]

7. Leica Summilux 35mm f/1.4

Great for environmental portraits

leica summilux 35mm f14 lens
Reasons to buyCons
+ Sharp
+ Can bokeh well
+ Good for every purpose
– None

Up until now in this list of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography we’ve focused on telephotos (usual focal lengths for portraits) but now we will focus on the opposite. 35mm is starting to get wide angle and it’s best reserved for environmental portraits.

While it cannot blur as much as it’s telephoto counterparts, what you have is a fast lens that is good for portraits and pretty much whatever you can throw at it from street photography to landscapes.

So if you want a lens that you can simply glue to your Leica that also happens to be very good at portraits, this is it.

This is the only lens you will ever need as the 35mm focal length is pretty much good for anything and at wide open f/1.4 you have plenty of power to blur the background and shoot at night.

leica summilux 35mm f14 portrait 1
[1]
leica summilux 35mm f14 portrait 2
[2]
leica summilux 35mm f14 portrait 3
The Summilux 35mm is one of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography [3]
leica summilux 35mm f14 portrait 4
[4]

8. Leica Summicron 35mm f/2

A cheaper, smaller alternative to the Summilux 35

leica summicron 35mm f2 lens
Reasons to buyCons
+ Great focal length
+ Sharp
+ Cheaper than Summilux
– None

This will be the final choice for this list of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography. This lens is just as good as the previous Summilux, sharp and of course cheaper because of the slower f/2. The Bokeh is excellent and powerful so if you do not need that extra speed this lens might fit the bill for a Leica portrait lens.

The 35mm is particularly well suited to show your subject and their background and it is like a swiss army knife of focal lengths. It is wide enough to do genres like landscapes and street photography, and yet not too wide as do distort portraits and genres that require you to get closer.

Speaking of which this lens will allow you to shoot both environmental and portraiture up to the bust, so it’s pretty versatile.

If budget allows Summilux is always the better option with the faster speeds (albeit with some usual weight gain) but if you can only get the Summicron, it’s just as much of an excellent lens, just a bit slower.

And again, if you are looking for just one lens to do everything well, including portraits, this is an excellent choice that you can stick on your Leica and never remove it.

leica summicron 35mm f2 portrait 1
The Summicron 35 is one of the best Leica lenses for portrait photography [1]
leica summicron 35mm f2 portrait 2
[2]
leica summicron 35mm f2 portrait 3
[3]
leica summicron 35mm f2 portrait 4
[4]
leica summicron 35mm f2 portrait 5
[5]
leica summicron 35mm f2 portrait 6
[6]
leica summicron 35mm f2 portrait 7
[7]
leica summicron 35mm f2 portrait 8
[8]
leica summicron 35mm f2 portrait 9
[9]
leica summicron 35mm f2 portrait 10
[10]

Conlusion

This concludes this article about the best Leica lenses for portrait photography. If you want a lens that does everything well, including portraits, either the Summilux 35 or Summicron 35. But if you are looking for a dedicated Leica portrait lenses that would be the Summicron 75mm, Summicron 90mm or Summilux 50mm. If budget allow, the Noctilux 50mm 0.95 with it’s dream Bokeh.

Summicron 75

[1]
L1134797-2.jpg(CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)Guido van Nispen

Summilux 50

[1]
In Luxembourg(CC BY 2.0)*rboed*

[2]
L1002273.jpg(CC BY 2.0)*rboed*

[3]
L1001871.jpg(CC BY 2.0)*rboed*

[4]
Stimuli(CC BY-SA 2.0)Lars Plougmann

[5]
Home Guard(CC BY 2.0)David Guyler

[6]
Cecilia(CC BY-ND 2.0)MaxDeVa

[7]
Parag(CC BY-SA 2.0)clarobuk

[8]
L1001946(CC BY-SA 2.0)Dennis Wu6

[9]
L1001968(CC BY-SA 2.0)Dennis Wu6

Summicron 50

[1]
Le sourire de Macha(CC BY 2.0)Asapix

[2]
Alexandra Zhukova, freckle decoration(CC BY 2.0)t66t

[3]
Beat Streuli(CC BY 2.0)christopheradams

[4]
***(CC BY-ND 2.0)Misha Sokolnikov

[5]
64/100 Akash(CC BY-ND 2.0)The Urban Scot

[6]
Cool Chic(CC BY 2.0)InMyEyes88

[7]
Michael Lin(CC BY 2.0)christopheradams

[8]
***(CC BY-ND 2.0)Misha Sokolnikov

[9]
Our swirly young dog Lou(CC BY 2.0)mripp

[10]
Kiss me Baby(CC BY 2.0)mripp

[11]
56/100 Matthew(CC BY-ND 2.0)The Urban Scot

Summicron 90

[1]
a showcase #1(CC BY-SA 2.0)Yong . L

[2]
Slight scar(CC BY-SA 2.0)Lars Plougmann

[3]
Lawrence – EPSN1954lr(CC BY-SA 2.0)Lars Plougmann

[4]
Gisela – EPSN1972lr(CC BY-SA 2.0)Lars Plougmann

[5]
Couple – EPSN1662lr(CC BY-SA 2.0)Lars Plougmann

[6]
Lovely colours, but…(CC BY-SA 2.0)Lars Plougmann

[7]
Signe with Gry – EPSN0553lr(CC BY-SA 2.0)Lars Plougmann

[8]
Zhoupu Shanghai(CC BY-SA 2.0)Yong . L

Noctlux 50mm

[1]
evening aarti, Varanasi(CC BY-ND 2.0)vhines200

[2]
bathing in the Ganges(CC BY-ND 2.0)vhines200

[3]
Jihane & Edmond(CC BY-SA 2.0)Agence Tophos

[4]
Joanna & Christophe – L1007842-Modifier(CC BY-SA 2.0)Agence Tophos

[5]
You and you(CC BY-ND 2.0)mamamiakevin

[6]
Bei by Nex7 and Noctilux(CC BY-ND 2.0)mamamiakevin

[7]
81140018(CC BY-ND 2.0)mamamiakevin

[8]
M2461557-Edit.jpg(CC BY 2.0)Frode Bjorshol

[9]
People I admire: Brad Garlinghouse. #LeicaM/Noctilux(CC BY 2.0)Christopher.Michel

[10]
Rumination(CC BY-ND 2.0)adamnsinger

[11]
Adeline & Julien – L1000149(CC BY-SA 2.0)Agence Tophos

[12]
Audrey + Fabrice – L1003964(CC BY-SA 2.0)Agence Tophos

[13]
Sarah & Jonathan(CC BY-SA 2.0)Agence Tophos

[14]
Lorence & Sergio(CC BY-SA 2.0)Agence Tophos

[15]
The Hair(CC BY-ND 2.0)3dpete

[16]
Azorean Wedding. Noctilux 0.95(CC BY-ND 2.0)adamnsinger

Summilux 35

[1]
bln2015-10(CC BY 2.0)Kodachron

[2]
amao09 012(CC BY-SA 2.0)阿毛头 Amaotou

[3]
pieter(CC BY 2.0)hoodoo youdo

[4]
bed hair(CC BY 2.0)hoodoo youdo

Summicron 35

[1]
woman on a staircase, Jodhpur(CC BY-ND 2.0)vhines200

[2]
Okay(CC BY-ND 2.0)MaxDeVa

[3]
(CC BY-SA 2.0)Thomas Claveirole

[4]
img741(CC BY-SA 2.0)Dennis Wu6

[5]
L1022204(CC BY-SA 2.0)Dennis Wu6

[6]
L1021889(CC BY-SA 2.0)Dennis Wu6

[7]
L1021884(CC BY-SA 2.0)Dennis Wu6

[8]
Olivier, décembre 2010(CC BY-SA 2.0)Thomas Claveirole

[9]
L1022167(CC BY-SA 2.0)Dennis Wu6

[10]
Scan-141004-0016(CC BY 2.0)gadzhi

Scroll to Top