<- My awesome YouTube channel icon
But now you've linked your channel to Google+ and suddenly your channel icon has been replaced by a generic blue image:
Can you keep your YouTube channel icon when it's linked to Google+? Yes!
When your YouTube channel is linked to Google+, your channel uses your Google+ profile photo. If you are linking your YouTube channel to a new Google+ Profile or Page, you should have the option of transferring your YouTube channel's icon to Google+ during the linking process:
However, if you do not select the "Keep YouTube photo" option, or that option is not offered to you during the linking process, your channel will end up with a generic Google+ icon or "bluehead".
How do you add a YouTube channel icon when the channel is linked to Google+?
To add a channel icon to your YouTube channel after linking to Google+, all you need to do is upload your custom image or avatar to your Google+ profile directly.
Sign into YouTube and click your channel's current icon in the upper righthand corner. The menu at the top of the page should link to either the "Profile" or "Page" that your YouTube channel is connected to.
If your channel is connected to a Google+ Page, it will look like this:
Your profile photo will be shown in a circle on Google+ and in a square on YouTube, so you'll want an image that looks good as either shape.
But what if you've lost your copy of your original YouTube channel icon image? Can it be recovered? Yes again!
If you've been using the same YouTube channel icon for years, you may discover you no longer have a copy of the original image you uploaded. Fortunately there is an easy trick to find your old icon.
When your YouTube channel is not linked to Google+, and you upload a channel icon, it is stored by YouTube at a link like this: