Mobile – general

20 Best Photo Editing Apps For Your Smartphone

In the past, editing your photography required professional tools and may have been difficult, but thanks to thousands of apps available online, you can change your photos with ease. We’ve put together a list of the 20 best photo editing apps so you can find the one that works best for you.

Top 20 Best Photo Editing Apps

For Android and iOS

1. VSCO

iOS and Android

Free + in-app purchases

The VSCO Camera app is one of the highest-rated and most popular apps available on both the App Store and Google Play. It’s also a top choice for professional photographers; many even use it to edit photos taken on professional cameras. VSCO Cam offers a variety of highly customizable editing features, including several filters and many of the editing tools you can find on professional programs that cost hundreds of dollars to install. There is also an extensive community of photographers who share their work on the app. If you choose to post here, they can give you feedback on your work and help you learn how to leverage features of the app.

2. Snapseed

iOS and Android

Free + in-app purchases

Snapseed was developed by Google specifically for Android users, but it became so popular that a version for iPhone was added to the App Store. It offers a lot of tools that are unique for cell phone apps, such as a healing brush, a Face Enhance tool to add focus to specific areas of a photo (like eyes or other aspects of the face), multiple standout filters and a Lens Blur effect to add several different styles of bokeh to images. Create artsy images with its color correcting options as well as enhance photos that may be slightly out of focus or otherwise less than ideal. It also offers all of these features for free!

3. Photoshop Express

iOS and Android

Free + in-app purchases

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As the name suggests, Photoshop Express is essentially a phone-friendly version of Adobe Photoshop, which is a mainstay for the professional photographer. For a mobile application, it is a serious powerhouse due to the number of features that match the original software. Some of these include blemish control, to “heal” spots in a photo that look out of place; defog, to remove haze from photos (especially useful for photos taken at night); and support for RAW files, which can be very useful for users editing photos taken on pro cameras. The app is free to download, but if you have an Adobe ID you can access even more features.

4. Pixlr

iOS and Android

Free (ad supported) + in-app purchases

Pixlr is a popular web application alternative to Photoshop and its peers, and its mobile companion is equally equipped with powerful editing features. It’s also free to use, both on the web and on the application marketplace. Pixlr features a lot of the same tools as Photoshop, such as the healing brush, red eye correction, color correction and more. However, Pixlr’s interface is simplified, making it ideal for people who may not be used to editing photos on a professional level as many Photoshop users do. Users can create collages, add text and stickers to make photo collections more fun and eye-catching.

5. Google Photos

iOS and Android

Free (ad supported)

Google Photos is another very popular photo app, with millions of downloads on both iOS and Android despite that was originally designed specifically for compatibility with Android phones. It’s highly acclaimed as one of the best photo apps available on the marketplace today. Aside from a powerhouse of editing features, Google Photos offers unlimited storage, tons of sharing options, easy backup to Google Drive or other cloud-based storage platforms. There is also a feature called Google Assistant, which suggests filters and creates albums, collages and gifs out of your photos. The combination of the editing features and the add-ons has consistently put Google Photos at the top of the list of general photography apps in both the App Store and Google Play.

6. Prisma

iOS and Android

Free (ad supported)

Prisma was voted “Best App of 2016” on Google Play and “App of the Year 2016” on the App Store. It has a lot of unique features alongside its typical editing tools. Some of these include its “background removal” feature, which uses object detection technology to get rid of backgrounds so you can place yourself and friends in any kind of backdrop you want for some seriously artistic results. You can also edit photos to mimic the painting styles of famous artists such as Van Gogh or Levitan. Prisma is ideal for people looking to elevate the artistry of their photography.

7. Photo Editor by Aviary

iOS and Android

Free + in-app purchases

This application was developed by Adobe, the same creators behind Photoshop and the entire Creative Cloud (and the parent company of Aviary), so you can bet that it contains a ton of powerful features and a sleek design. The interface is designed for a different type of user than Photoshop, however, and its features include some filters and stickers that are not available on the Photoshop Express app. Images edited with Photo Editor by Aviary look polished and print-ready thanks to the powerful color correction tools. If you’re not satisfied with the available effects, you can purchase add-ons in the app.

8. Fotor

iOS and Android

Free (ad supported)

Fotor is best used to create photo collages. However, it features enough tools and effects to be considered a top mobile photography app by many reviewers on the App Store and Google Play. Its ease of use is its best feature; Fotor offers lots of web tutorials on its site and is designed for novice photographers, making it a solid choice for first-timers. Stickers and fonts are updated weekly, so you can never get tired of what the app has to offer when crafting collages.

9. Repix

iOS and Android

Free + in-app purchases

Like some of the other apps on this list, Repix is aimed at users who want to create artistic effects for their photography. Repix offers several brushes that give you a high level of control over your editing. By using brushes, you can choose to add effects only to specific portions of a photo, which can change your editing options from a few filters and color correcting tools to almost infinite possibilities for artistry.

10. Lightroom

iOS and Android

Free + in-app purchases

Along with Photoshop Express and Photo Editor by Aviary, Lightroom is an application created and developed by Adobe. Unlike both of these apps, however, Lightroom offers a huge suite of creative tools that are nearly identical to that of its desktop version, such as healing tools, light correction, dodge/burn and more. Lightroom is a very popular software used by creatives around the world, and its app version for both iOS and Android is impressively equipped with tools, presets, filters and a well-crafted in-app camera that allows users to shoot through preset editing modes.

11. Afterlight

iOS and Android

$0.99

Afterlight makes the list of Top 20 apps not only because it’s a robust program, but because of the sheer variety it offers. There are 59 filters, 66 textures, 77 frames and a wide assortment of editing tools available upon installation. Its cropping tool offers 15 presets, and there are 15 adjustment tools as well. For just 99 cents, this amount of options ensures that this app offers the most for your money.

12. Touch Retouch

iOS and Android

$1.99

Touch Retouch is a unique application with a singular purpose: to remove unwanted elements from photos. Its impressive technology allows users to touch or flick the item they are trying to remove, from something as small as a blemish to something as large as a telephone wire or power line blocking a landscape. The removal is simple, but there are multiple in-app tutorials that can help you along the way.

13. PicLab

iOS and Android

Free (ad supported)

Many of the apps on this list offer text and stickers, but usually to access the best options you need to download an add-on or expansion pack. PicLab was created by people who have an eye for typography and design, so its text and sticker options are seemingly limitless without needing to spend the extra dough to get your top choice of font. New content is also added monthly, so you won’t get bored of repeatedly looking at the same choices.

For iOS Only

14. Darkroom

iOS

Free + in-app purchases

Darkroom is consistently praised and lauded as one of the best iPhone apps available on the App Store by reviewers in all areas of the photography spectrum. Its color correcting tools include access to Curves, Tone and Levels. You can “undo” changes an infinite amount of times, making this app ideal for photographers who want to perform more extensive color editing than simply adjusting a filter or preset. It’s currently only available on iPhone, but an Android app has been discussed in the past due to its success in the App Store.

15. Manual

iOS

$3.99

Manual is one of the more expensive apps on this list, cashing in at nearly $4.00, but its users and reviewers claim that the price is worth it. The in-app camera is one of the best on the market. It allows users to take photos in RAW or DNG format for better preservation of image data, so you can do things like retain details in highlights or have better control over colors. Shooting on the Manual app gives the user full control over multiple aspects of camera lighting, similarly to a manual setting on a professional camera. The user can edit all these aspects of lighting, allowing for subtle changes to be made to photos that can make them look like they were shot by a professional.

16. Pixelmator

iOS

$4.99

Another more pricey app on our list, Pixelmator, is a layer-based photo editing app that performs some serious artistic acrobatics. Pixelmator offers a huge suite of tools, including a clone stamp, a Repair tool for blemishes, Distort tools and Blur/Sharpen tools that can fix photos with professional quality. Pixelmator also features artistic editing options with a Painting set of filters and tools as well as a full Graphic Design toolkit. The options for photo editing with Pixelmator are endless due to the variety of tools offered.

17. Camera+

iOS

$2.99

Camera+ has 10 million downloads as of 2017, which comes as no surprise to photographers who have used the app extensively. It offers plenty of filters and effects that can make your photography look subtly professional or wildly artistic and abstract, depending on your personal taste. It also syncs up with iCloud so you can shoot on your phone and then edit on a tablet or Mac computer for a more high-quality visual of what you’re working with.

18. Tadaa

iOS

Free (ad supported)

A lesser-known but highly praised app, Tadaa offers a similar suite of features to its competitors with one key difference. When you are shooting on Tadaa, you can get a live view of the filters and adjustments you wish to apply to your pictures, which saves a lot of time. You can also customize which tools and filters you want to use, to avoid scrolling through the ones you know you’ll never use, and purchase add-ons if you want more options.

For Android Only

19. Camera MX

Android

$3.99

Camera MX is developed by the makers of MAGIX Movie Studio, a high-quality video editing platform. This app proves that the people at MAGIX are as adept at photo editing as they are at video editing. You can snap photos using the in-app camera and scroll back three seconds to see a “burst” and select your favorite frame to edit. You can also create gifs out of photos taken this way.

20. PicsArt Photo Studio

Android

Free + in-app purchases

PicsArt has thousands of different ways to make your photos look the way you want. It features a ton of sticker, frame and filter options that beautify pictures. One of the best features of this app is its double exposure setting that layers two photos together and blends them into one stunning image. This effect is infinitely customizable for a truly unique look usually perfected best by professional editing software.

Summary

Editing photos like a pro is easy with the right combination of apps and tutorials. Once you’ve edited your photos to perfection, use the Shutterfly app to create beautiful collages, create one-of-a kind products and to print your photos from your phone.