The best photo-editing apps you must try

Forget Instagram for a second and try these apps instead…
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The best photo-editing apps you must try

The cameras inside our smartphones are getting better each year, and that means we’re all taking more photos than ever. But there’s more to photography than having a great camera phone. The right app can make all the difference. The best photography apps don’t just put a nice filter on your pictures – they let you do so much more. Here’s our quick guide to some of the best photo-editing apps around.

1. Snapseed

Snapseed is a filter-friendly app that specialises in giving your pictures a more artistic look, and fine-tuning them ready to share with your online followers. There are 29 filters in total, and all kinds of features to edit your photos, such as white balance for colour adjustment, and a healing tool that lets you remove unwanted objects from the scene. A lens blur tool even lets you add a blurred background bokeh effect just like the pros. And you can save your edit history, so you can go back to any previous edits.

Download on Android

Download on iOS

2. VSCO

VSCO photo editing

If it’s fab filters you’re after, you’ll do well to find an app better than this one. If it sometimes feels like your Instagram filters can be a little heavy-handed with your snaps, and lack some subtlety, VSCO is the perfect antidote. The filters here will make your photo look as if it’s been taken on a quality analogue camera – with sliders that’ll give you just the filter you’re looking for.

On top of that, there’s all the other stuff you’d expect - cropping, borders etc.

Download on Android

Download on iOS

3. Adobe Photoshop Express

Photoshop is the world-famous image editing app. Photoshop Express is the smaller mobile version – but it’s still really good. Actually, for something that’s free and easy to use on a mobile screen, it’s pretty advanced. Smart filters onboard will put some of your issues right automatically – things like exposure and colour temperature. Add in the other useful tools, for things like brightness, contrast, saturation, cropping and correcting red-eye, and you’ve got yourself a really handy app.

First up, though, make sure you’ve signed up for an Adobe ID account (don’t worry – it’s free).

Download on Android

Download on iOS

4. Enlight

Enlight photo editing

Enlight is one of the best photo-editing apps around if you’re feeling creative. It packs a ton of features letting you do almost anything with your photos. Besides the usual crop and effect options, you can also adjust the exposure of your shots, remove unwanted defects, superimpose images and transform your pictures into works of art. You’ll never look at Instagram the same way again.

Download on iOS

5. TouchRetouch

Touch Retouch photo editing

This app’s all about getting rid of the things you don’t want in your pictures. Whether that’s a road sign spoiling your beautiful landscape, or an amazing view that would be so much better without that man on the side of the shot picking his nose. Get rid of ‘em! And the best bit is it only takes one touch, so you can get you retouched photos shared faster than you can say ZAP!

Download on Android

Download on iOS

6. Visage

OK – so we all have things that we’d change about ourselves, whether that’s having whiter teeth, smoother skin or getting rid of that spot that just won’t go away!! Well, we think you’re great as you are, but if you really must retouch your portrait, you might find Visage useful. It can smooth skin, whiten teeth – even add eye makeup. Upgrade to the pro version to avoid the ads and branding added to your final edit.

Download on Android

Download on iOS

7. Afterlight / Afterlight 2

Afterlight 2 is – in its own words – the “all-in-one feature-packed” photo editing app. Which, to be fair, sounds about right to us. It has all the options that you’d expect to see – crop, brightness, and exposure – as well as things which are more on the advanced side - selective hue/saturation, curves, clarify and tone. The great thing about this app is that it gives you new updated content each month. And once you’ve paid the initial (very small) one-off payment, there are no extra subscription fees.

Download on Android

Download on iOS

8. Adobe Photoshop Lightroom

Lightroom photo editing

Our last app is a second entry from Adobe, and this is another winner. Imagine having your own lighting studio with you wherever you go, and you’ll have some idea of what this app offers. The mobile version of the professional photo-editing app has all you need to make your photos look as professional as possible on-the-go.

Edit photos in seconds, or spend more time to make fancy edits by adjusting lighting curves, exposure and more by moving your finger across the sliders. If you’re an Adobe Creative Cloud subscriber you’ll be able to automatically back up your photos onto other devices. Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is a must if you’re serious about photography.

Download on Android

Download on iOS

Got any other photo-editing apps you’d like to share with us? Perhaps we missed your favourite. If so let us know in the comments section below…

What are your thoughts? Join the conversation here…

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