Best photo editor apps: One of the best camera phones paired with one of the top photo editing apps makes for a complete package.
The best smartphones typically have wonderful cameras, but they are even better when you pair their excellent imagery with top quality editing software. Not to mention that all cell phones will have built-in apps like Red Eye and Face Retouch, but these are only a small part of what is possible with specialized software.
For example, these first two options can handle RAW files, or remove unwanted elements from the background of an image. They also use serious machine learning to give your images some seriously clever easy filters.
Choose a professional best photo editor appssuch as PIE that has features for quickly adding things like text, stickers, filters, angles and more.
We’ve narrowed down this list of your favorite apps to make sure they include the seal of approval from trustworthy Tom’s Guide.
Which are the best photo editor apps for you?
After reviewing more than a dozen apps, our selection of the best photo editing apps overall is PicsArt. It offers multiple features such as AI effects and stickers, plus customizable backgrounds and text overlays to create amazing images from your photos.
You are able to improve your skills with the tutorials and daily challenge, as well as a library of images that you can customize on PicsArt. The app also includes social options, so you can connect with other users and share photos with them.
If you’re looking for a more comprehensive and powerful photo editing tool with features such as nondestructive editing, curves, RAW image editing, white balance exposure, and double exposure filter, Snapseed has all that. It’s geared towards those who are familiar with photo editing software, so it takes some time to learn the user interface.
Google Photos is a great way to back up your photos. With cloud storage and auto-syncing, Google Photos ensures your files are always ready to be accessed on any device.
We have picked handful of best photo editor apps for you. Check them all for sure.
1. PicsArt (Android, iOS)-Best photo editor apps
One of the best photo editor apps is PicsArt. It is fun, easy to use, has a large variety of filters and takes the best selfies you’ve ever seen. Another popular app is Snapchat; it used to be our favorite app but they changed the game in terms of snapchat features.
Create a unique and interchangeable photo collage, or share your thoughts on a picture with 150 million monthly users of PicsArt. With in-app tutorials that are easy to follow, and challenges, you can submit your creation based on a specific type of edit or a theme. The picture wins when votes come in from the community and they win by popular vote.
However, advertisements for PicsArt premium resources pop up frequently (and annoyingly) when I am just trying to find a tool to use. To turn them off and use other tools, filters, and more content, you have to buy the premium subscription for $11.99/month or $55.99/year. There is also a student discount (15% off).
Our professional best photo editor apps, PicsArt, is a powerful tool. It has a rich collection of tools that are accessible to the everyday consumer photographer to help them experience a high degree of creativity.
Snapseed isn’t for the casual user, but rather for serious photographers who need to edit photos on the go. With full editing tools, including selective edit brushes plus film-related filters such as Lens Blur, Retrolux and Double Exposure, Snapseed is a best photo editor apps that’s worth checking out.
For photographers interested in experimenting with their photos, Snapseed provides an interactive experience that is fun and addictive. We had a lot of fun playing around with the wide range of tools that allow you to adjust the exposure, color temperature, masking, and other formats for each photo. You can undo or abandon any change on any given photo or use a brush or a stack of edits to apply different effects to another photo. Furthermore, you can save stacks of edits as “looks” which are then applied to other pics and shared with other people.
Snapseed has a plethora of editing tools that are accessible to anyone.
3. Adobe Photoshop Camera (Android) – Best photo editor apps
Adobe Photoshop Camera is one of the best photo editor apps due to its AI, which applies special effects and photo corrections before or after you clicked with phone’s camera.
Photoshop Camera offers a wide range of special filters called “lenses” to help you add effects to photos. It can also take pictures with the type automatically, like for people and the sky, which is a helpful feature. The Lens system was created to offer a simple way people could apply different effects without worrying that their settings may interfere with one another when using the same filter. For example, it can change how some elements of your photo look like, such as whether or not there are clouds in the sky or if the water reflects its surroundings properly. There are also lenses that can move objects within the photo. And finally, there are lenses that have animations when they are applied.
Apple’s iPad version of Adobe Photoshop has a killer feature called the refine edge brush that allows you to better define an object you want to select and rotate canvas. Both features are touch-enabled, too.
Adobe promises that new variations of lenses will be added weekly. The company has partnered with celebrities and influencers to produce these lenses. For example, the artist Leonardo da Vinci has designed an artist’s lens for PS Camera. With the click of a button, you can go from selfie to artistic spin on your photo in seconds. There is no premium version, so I would recommend this app for fun-loving photographers who are looking for more options when taking pictures instead of what you get with Photoshop.
4. Pixlr (Android, iOS)-Best photo editor apps
Pixlr is one of the best photo editor apps for taking care of a smartphone photos by offering features like effects and fonts/text. The intuitive interface allows users to master it quickly and have fun with their pictures.
Pixlr is easy to use when it comes to setting up and editing your images. There are many ways of controlling the images: brushes, selective edit undo button, pre-made layouts with moving, zooming, and shuffling capabilities. Cartoonish stickers make it fun.
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The app is also available on a subscription basis, with the premium version of the app ($1.99/month or $11.99/year) stopping ads and providing a larger library of resources such as stickers and fonts. For photographers who are looking for more comprehensive content, starting with Pixlr isn’t the best option. The casual users though will enjoy using this app’s easy-to-use application to design cute memes that they can share on their social media accounts.
5. Adobe Lightroom (Android, iOS)-
Adobe Lightroom (iOS or Android) is part of a cloud-based workflow with storage of your entire photo library and access to the full-resolution files. With this powerful system, you can edit your photos in a professional manner for the best quality possible. There is a free version that comes without platform limitations, which costs $9.99/month for 100Gb of space. For $4.99/month, you can check out to access even more than the fast processing speed by unlocking storage space and removing restrictions by Premium service in the first year saving up to 40%.
Lightroom is a great platform for learning how to take professional-looking pictures. Its tutorials can teach you more than editing your photos, including exposure and color adjustments. With quick sliders and no destructive edits, Lightroom will help you get the most out of your pictures. In addition to sharing through social media, Lightroom has its own Discover area, where even beginners can create amazingly well edited images; it’s also a place where people can contribute their best edits.
For those who don’t have time to do more than a simple edit, Lightroom mobile is a good alternative. There are features like automatic effects and auto-cropping which can be done quickly and easily.
6. Instagram (Android, iOS)- Best photo editor apps
Instagram, with more than 850 million users, focuses on quick video and image sharing on social media. Instagram’s simple interface has a fast path from taking a picture or video through simple edits to posting it simultaneously on multiple social networks.
Instagram is mostly social media and activities where people can connect with one another. The most important metric used to judge success on Instagram is engagement, or how many people like or view your posts. In fact, the recent updates of the app included tools for gauging and improving your engagement rate. These include tools for removing “ghostly followers” (those who only show up without engaging with your posts) and tracking which hashtags attract more views and likes. A nice security feature now lists all Instagram emails you’ve been sent recently, so you can verify what’s really from Instagram — phishing attackers cannot fake these messages. And Instagram addicts have gotten a bit of help in breaking the habit — new features tell you how much time per day you spend on the app.
Currently, Instagram’s interface is confusing to many users due to the ongoing changes it goes through. Though these frequent changes can be worrying, they seem to make Instagram more popular with each change.
7. Google Photos (Android, iOS)-
If you’ve ever lost all your data because your phone died or was misplaced, Google Photos will have been helpful. The only downside is that it doesn’t include many editing tools. However, it organizes photos and videos, offers easy sharing and automatically backs up your entire image library to the cloud so all devices can access the content. This includes Apple phones, laptops, tablets and computers; Windows computers and all Android devices.
The only options for adjusting photos that you have access to is the option to adjust color, light and contrast (pop). There are also a few filters you can use in Google Photos. It has quite a few fun features, too; like automatically generating GIFs from a batch of your photos.
You can now choose whether to share or store your precious memories on the cloud. You may find restrictions to the number of pictures you are allowed to upload, and you’ll have to pay if you want access to additional space.
The one caveat is that you should download and set up Google Photos to do it work in the background.
8. Pixtica (Android)-
Pixtica is a very good app for editing photos, but it doesn’t do anything particularly unique. What makes it different is its user-friendly design and all the features you’ll need to produce professional quality images.
With a live camera, filters and more, Pic Collage gives you total control to create exceptional images. With simple buttons and a quick swipe for easy editing tools, this app delivers an unmatched experience.
The paid version of this app has a variety of filters and higher resolutions that you might need, but the free version will be enough for most people.
9. Prisma (Android, iOS) –
Prisma is a different kind of photo editing app as it not only edits your photos with professional-style advances filters but also allows you to turn your photos into mini-Picassos or Van Goghs. Prisma uses computer vision and machine learning to apply these effects with uncanny accuracy.
There are more than 300 different filters that start at $1.99 for a week of access, $7.99 for a month and $29.99 for an entire year of premium access; you then have the option to edit your image with the new filters or save them to your phone right away too. Plus, new filters are added regularly to keep the app feeling fresh.
10. Facetune 2 (Android, iOS)-
Facetune 2 is an amazing photo editing app because it goes beyond skin smoothing and toning. It allows you to make your portraits look more appealing by using subtle colors, shadows and highlights. You can also see your changes in the camera’s preview before you take the photo.
If you don’t buy the premium version of the app, you can’t use some of its other apps. These include changing backgrounds, eyes or skin color, or editing blemishes.
The premium version costs $1.99/month, $35.99/year, or $69.99 for a one-time purchase. Still, the free version is a powerful tool for improving your selfies and portraits with this AI app that’s compatible with both iOS and Android devices.
11. Afterlight (Android, iOS)-
For those who want to spend time editing their photos on an advanced level, Afterlight 2 offers a comprehensive selection of tools that includes curves, layers and selection of hues. The stickers are simple but varied and contain multiple levels of undo and redo. With the history screen, you can use a slider to select how far back you want to go, or edit over specific edits without disturbing other parts of your image.
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Despite the occasional confusion, the interface is generally easy to use. A lot of the options and tools are available only if you buy a membership for $2.99/month, $17.99/year or $35.99/lifetime. Options on the Android version don’t run as smoothly as the iOS version.
12. VSCO (Android, iOS)-
VSCO offers a convenient and user-friendly way to achieve quality photographic results but lacks some of the features found in other photo editing apps. On the upside, you have access to a wide variety of pre-capture controls, including selective focus point and manual control over white balance, ISO, and exposure. VSCO’s camera also offers atypical shooting modes like selective focus or auto exposure bracketing.
VSCO is a social network with a strong community and some photo sharing features. However, unlike Instagram, VSCO has very limited interaction capabilities. You can still share your photos on Instagram or any other networks within your phone, but VSCO does not limit who has access to personal content. Anyone can view it without an account on the social network.
With limited tools, the free app is only for basic editing. For $19.99/year, VSCO provides users with more than 200 presets, advanced editing tools (such as HSL and borders), a video editor, still and animated montage tools (including layering), weekly photo challenges, and more robust learning support (tips, tricks and tutorials). VSCO is a photographer’s tool that creates quality results with its numerous features.
13. TouchRetouch (iOS, Android)-
More and more apps have been releasing, but Magic Eraser still doesn’t crack the top of the list. TouchRetouch has been around for years, quietly getting rid of photos with unwanted objects or backgrounds. There’s no complexity involved—you just paint with a different color over the object you want to remove and click “Go.” The object is removed, it’s that easy.
As for its price, the software shouldn’t cost too much, at just $2. You also have a tool for removing straight lines such as wires. This software is incorporated in their nature and comes with it’s benefits.
Choosing the best photo editor apps.. How to do that?
The photo-related app industry is very competitive, with no real distinction between apps. Snapchat’s success with disappearing photo and video messages has spurred imitators.
In general, if you’re looking for a good photo editing app, it’s worth assessing your needs before picking one. There are both professional and consumer-oriented apps included on this list.
As is the case with many apps, most photo editing apps allow you to use a specific number of features for free and then charge a monthly or annual subscription for the full suite.
Photo editing apps comparision with desktop alternatives?
With desktop-friendly photo editing software, you can edit your photos to perfection and customize them. With the best photo editor apps on a phone, you don’t get features such as enhanced image-processing options, layer support or advanced color adjustments.
With the many different technology platforms available, there are four main areas where technologies differ in their functions.
- Size of display- A bigger screen is always preferable when making detailed edits. For example, if you are editing a photo on your phone, the size of your display would be quite small and even on the tablet, you would be unlikely to greatly exceed a 10 inch device. Laptops start at 10 inches, and with desks, you can go much larger still.
- Control Methods- On a phone or tablet, you’re likely to be using your finger, or possibly a stylus or Apple Pencil. On a desktop or laptop, it’s more likely to be a trackpad or mouse and keyboard depending on what you’re trying to do or what you’re most comfortable with.
- Complexity of features- For most people, an app will offer the main tools you need, but full-fat desktop software will be a better option for those who intend to do something creative. For instance, photo-editing might seem like an app’s domain, but Photoshop has a rich feature set that is probably too much for most people to handle on their phones.
- Price- You will often find that the top programs are either free or priced less than $10. Our list of the best photo editor apps includes some high cost applications.