Photo editors can be grouped into three types. There are those that try to rival powerful desktop editors such as Adobe Lightroom CC, lighter editors that simplify the whole photo editing experience such as Snapseed, and social media filter apps that don’t offer much but add cool effects to your photos. With so many options for each type, finding the right photo editor can have your head spinning.
To help you narrow down on the best options, here are the 8 leading photo editing apps to try.
8 Photo Editing Apps to Use Right Now
At first glance, Snapseed looks like your everyday one-click filter tool. While it does all the basic stuff you would expect from any photo editing app, there is so much more to Snapseed than great presets.
First and foremost, the app offers a range of tools that cover all your photo editing needs – from basics such as cropping, tuning, rotating, and healing to pro-level editing tools such as DNG support and precision masking. It also allows you to fully express your creativity with features such as frames, grunge overlays, double exposure, and text overlays.
More importantly, Snapseed is a user-friendly app. The interface is intuitive – you can simply select an editing feature by scrolling up and down your screen and adjust the strength of an effect by swiping right or left. The app also allows you to revisit edited photos and make as many changes as you wish. Furthermore, you can easily create your own filter by adding an edit to the “Looks” tab.
2. Affinity Photo
Photo editing with Affinity Photo is quite similar to using Photoshop on an iPad. The only difference is that Affinity Photo offers you all the tools available on Photoshop’s desktop version.
Since this is a desktop-quality editor, don’t expect immediacy. It may baffle you at first with its extensive options and palettes, but once you get the hang of it, Affinity Photo is one of the most powerful photo editing apps available.
The app offers a wide range of photo editing features including live filters, unlimited layers, lens correction, task-oriented workspaces, panorama stitching, RAW support, a world-class brush engine, as well as correction and retouching tools. Affinity Photo also allows you to export files to PSD so you can continue your work on Adobe’s Photoshop desktop interface. However, you probably won’t need to do this given all the capabilities of this app.
3. Adobe Photoshop Fix
Adobe is yet to release a full-flat mobile version of Photoshop, but Adobe Photoshop Fix looks like a step in the right direction. The company appears to have shoved bits of its popular desktop image editor onto this streamlined photo editing app.
Unlike other apps, Adobe Photoshop Fix was mainly designed for fixing images. Its powerful healing tools get rid of unwanted components, add color, and adjust highlights and shadows.
Additionally, the Liquify feature allows you to swell, warp, and twirl images in different creative ways. And if you load an image portrait, the application automatically identifies the subject’s features and allows you to make as many adjustments as you want.
If you have a Desktop Creative Cloud account, you get extra features. For instance, you can share images you’ve been working on to Adobe Photoshop and have all your previous edits intact.
EyeEm is not your typical photo editing app. In fact, it’s more like a social networking platform that’s focused on bringing together like-minded photography enthusiasts. It helps photographers connect with world-leading brands.
Once you sign up, the app allows you to upload photos from your device as well as take new ones using the inbuilt camera. It comes with severely accurate built-in editing features such as adjustment tools, color filters, and cropping.
It may not have all the fancy features you will find in an advanced photo editing app, but it’s equipped enough for simple but topnotch edits. After all, it’s made for professional photographers who need little to no filters.
5. Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC
This app allows you to add a range of effects to your images. Much like its desktop version, you can catalog, search, and edit a wide selection of images on the mobile platform.
If you have an Adobe Creative Cloud account, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom offers you helpful editing tools including cool/warm presets, detail adjustments, as well as color distortion.
It’s also RAW compatible, making it easy to organize and manage images. It’s powered by Adobe Sensei intelligent technology.
If you are not subscribed to any Adobe products, the Photoshop Lightroom is still worth the shot. Sure, you won’t get Adobe Sensei, selective editing, and web galleries for free, but you’ll still get a decent set of adjustment tools and a specialized photo editor.
VSCO is best known for its film emulation capabilities. With this app, you get top-of-the-line photo editing features, the ability to share images to an online community, and a built-in camera. However, its biggest lure is probably its wide selection of filters that allow you to emulate your favorite classic films. Unlike its desktop version, the VSCO mobile app is free.
Of course, there’s more to VSCO than mere classic filters. You can add grain, skew and crop images, adjust skin tones, and experiment with vignettes. With this app, your creativity is your only limitation.
VSCO also allows you to adjust the order of tools, providing an intuitive way to access the editing features you use frequently. You can refine edits further by opening the photos on the VSCO studio tab.
Even better, you can connect with other photo enthusiasts via the free mobile version or a paid membership tier known as the VSCO X. For only $19.99 a year, you get the premium membership and a whole lot of editing tools and filters. If you have extra cash to spare, you can grab even more pack presets that are custom-designed to fit specific genres of photography.
7. Camera+ 2
Even though Camera+ 2 is not the easiest app to use, it comes with a host of editing tools for every photography need.
When you launch this photo editing app, a strip of buttons appears across the top of your screen, allowing you to access the various camera types. Within the viewfinder sits a zoom slider with manual controls that appear when you tap any other part of the screen. You can adjust the exposure and white balance from this set of controls.
More controls can be found when you tap on the button that sits next to the shutter. These include toggling spirit level, switching camera modes, RAW, and location-capturing controls. Slow shutter options, stabilizers, and the timer are also included.
Camera + 2 strikes the perfect balance between power and accessibility. It offers a fully equipped editing space that’s rich in filters, adjustment tools, and cropping options. It’s perfect to have an-all-in one image editing solution, rather than crowd your mobile space with all kinds of standalone photo editors. And this is what the Camera + 2 app is all about.
8. Camera FV-5
Camera FV-5 was specifically designed to offer photography enthusiasts the utmost control over their camera settings. The user-friendly interface makes good use of motion gestures, allowing you to zoom with a pinch motion and adjust focus with a simple vertical drag. The app also affords you absolute control on the images’ white balance as well as the ability to assign specific functions to the volume keys.
In addition, Camera FV-5 comes with several shooting utilities. These include a self-timer, the burst mode, and the screen-tap option. Time lapse, bracketed exposures, and RAW capture are also available on the app.
Take Better Photos with These Photo Editing Apps
Hopefully, you can be able to narrow down on a few photo editing tools that will sufficiently meet your photography needs. Some of the options in this review may require you to spend some money in order to access all the features. While it’s okay to spend on photo editing apps, make sure that you are not spending on features that you’ll never use.