I'm trying to bake Cycles materials to a texture, for use in a different program. The issue is, whenever I bake the materials to a texture, the result is far darker than the original version.

This is it using Cycles materials:

With materials

And this is it with a texture. No other changes were made other than changing it from materials to a texture.

With texture

The second hat is dramatically darker than the original. How can I fix it?

These are the baking settings I'm using.

Bake setup

Any help would be much appreciated.

EDIT: Here's a link to the .Blend file of the hat. The texture is packed in with it, but if you need it separate, let me know.


  • $\begingroup$ Can you post the .blend and / or the newly baked textures? If it was baked properly, then you should probably just turn on "Shadeless" in the baked hat's material settings. $\endgroup$ Mar 31, 2016 at 23:13
  • $\begingroup$ I'm doing this in Cycles, and I don't think Cycles has a Shadeless option like Blender Internal does. I edited the question to include a link to the .Blend file, though. $\endgroup$
    – Ninten1
    Apr 1, 2016 at 2:01
  • $\begingroup$ For shadeless in cycles you would use an emission node that is only applied if it's a camera ray using the light path node. $\endgroup$
    – coCoKNIght
    Apr 1, 2016 at 8:00

2 Answers 2


The way I found to do this is to set your cycles settings this way:

  1. Under Render Properties
  2. Under Bake
  3. Change "Bake Type" to "Diffuse".
  4. Select the "Colored" button, while disabling "Direct" and "Indirect"

I used Blender 2.78 by the way. Hope that helps!

Blender 2.78 Cycles Color only / Shadeless

  • $\begingroup$ For an explanation of why this works: the direct and indirect options are baking lighting information as well as just raw surface colour. $\endgroup$
    – Sazerac
    Oct 11, 2017 at 6:35

For those still bumping into this problem (I did)

Try switching the direction of the normals once or twice. Even if it looks all right. Somehow that helps. (not sure why).

And experiment with very low detail 256x256 to see if it works all right.

  • $\begingroup$ On blender 2.82 I was getting dark bakes. Recalculating normals didn't help but flipping them twice solved the issue. Thank you for the answer. $\endgroup$
    – Abcd Efg
    Feb 23, 2020 at 20:56
  • $\begingroup$ Solved my prob - but emphasis on ONCE. I didn't have back face culling so didn't realize my normals were backward. The result was simply darker which is pretty weird. $\endgroup$
    – DAG
    Aug 24, 2021 at 11:50
  • $\begingroup$ how do you flip normals? $\endgroup$
    – JustImpact
    May 13, 2022 at 13:54

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