Depending on how you edit your photos, there are many photo editor softwares and apps to download. To help you choose the best photo editing software, I’ve tested 10 demanding picture editing softwares that are free or can cost about $100 as Adobe Photoshop CC, Lightroom CC, Capture One Pro, Gimp, Polarr, Movavi, etc.
Photo editing software is a specially designed application with the appropriate interface and image retouching/managing tools. Today image editing is not only the obligation of art directors and professional photographers. No matter you taking photos with your iPhone XS or a digital/mirrorless camera, you'll want to import them into your laptop to organize them, make image culling, enhance them, and print or share them online.
Among the variety of photo editors, there are a few of them, which have a wide range of tools for professional photo editing.
Firstly, pay attention to the functions and tools, which the photo editor has. Check whether a photo editor supports existing file formats and works with digital profiles. The program should be user-friendly, it influences the way and speed of your image editing.
Adobe Photoshop is a multifunctional picture editing software as well as the indispensable tool for professional photographers and designers. Nowadays, despite the number of competitors, Adobe is a world brand and a reference standard in photo editing industry. The photo editor gets impressive monthly updates and bugs correction.
In terms of photo editor possibilities, they are almost boundless. Photoshop allows to perform professional photo retouching, GIF editing, create design projects, 3D modeling, and digital drawing.
Website: Adobe Lightroom Classic CCDeveloper: Adobe
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is a graphics editor from Adobe for image culling and color correction. Lightroom is mostly used for quick work with a huge number of pictures and frequently used by event and wedding photographers. Lightroom is an excellent image management and organization program. You can use many Lightroom presets to get any effect you want in several clicks.
You can make camera and lens-based corrections. Moreover, you may use Lightroom brushes and do gradient adjustments with color and luminance masking. You can download its mobile version to edit photos on the go.
Capture One Pro is a professional photography software. It allows you to perform professional picture retouching, as well as photo color correction. It is resource intensive and requires a powerful PC configuration. Capture One Pro has a large number of tools to work with masks and layers, filters, effects. You can use Capture One styles free that are Lightroom presets alternatives.
Adobe Photoshop Elements is a photo editor to edit pictures, create slideshows and collages. It is equipped with specific tools and features to systematize the portfolio. Thanks to Adobe Sensei technology, this photo editing software removes unnecessary elements from the photo, performs color correction and make the photo more natural. There is a face-recognition system, which is combined with a photo editor.
Adobe Photoshop Elements was created for inexperienced users, so it includes simple tools for image editing, image management, and publication. AI function is embedded into the program to search and improve facial features. In other words, it is a Photoshop younger brother that has simpler functionality and intuitively understandable tools for beginners.
Gimp is a good photo editing software based on open source code. The photo editor is equipped with quite simple and easy-to-understand interface together with powerful picture retouching tools similar to Photoshop.
With first update and release, this photo editor could perform the basic photo editing tasks: create graphics, logos, zoom and crop photos, paint and perform basic image retouching. This free professional photo editing software impressed a huge number of users because it was based on the open source code, which allows to manually make changes in the program code, modifying and supplementing it with necessary functions. Today, Gimp photo editor is a full-fledged free photo editing program that has a simple and easy-to-understand interface, and quite powerful, comparable to Photoshop tools: masks and layers, big number of color correction features, various effects and filters, which you can download, options to design projects and many other things.
Polarr is one of the best photo editing programs that has a variety of unique filters together with basic photo editing tools. The app allows to save the image editing history, perform color correction on the professional level, work with light, photo details, add watermarks etc. It is possible to see the original photo and edited one in the comparison mode.
It was one of the first browser photo editors that can download and edit RAW images free of charge. The paid app offers powerful image retouching functions such as masks, layers, texts and vectors. These tools together with the batch exporting, resizing and renaming are the part of Pro version for $19,99. However, do not hurry to buy it. Polarr provides a 30-day trial version and most importantly with full functionality for free.
This photo editing software has professional color correction tools similar to Lightroom and allows to work with a huge number of various filters and effects. It is very simple to use in comparison to Photoshop. Polarr is the best photo editor for a beginning photographer, designer, as it has intuitive interface and basic photo retouching tools.
Pixlr is the best photo editing software with a large set of tools for image retouching. The functions of this program vary from simple to advanced/professional. Initially, this picture editor was positioned as a simple PC photo editor with an average interface. Today, Pixlr X is a full-featured, versatile image editing software that resembles Photoshop. It has basic picture retouching tools that allow you not only to retouch photos but also work on the design of various projects, drawing and creating marketing templates. It is interesting to note that this best photo editing software is available as a free version, with slightly reduced image retouching functions.
Movavi is a free, raster image editor. Initially, the it was released as a photography software to remove unnecessary objects. However, over time, it acquired all the functions of a professional, full-fledged desktop photo editor for PC. In 2014, Movavi Company created free professional photo editing software, called Movavi.
The photo editor has several tools for automatic and manual color correction. Currently, Movavi Photo Editor provides a wide range of image retouching functions. Program users can perform color correction, add filters and text. Using this photo editing software, you can also remove objects from a photo, replace the background and retouch some skin/body flaws on the portraits. The program provides the possibility to publish the edited photo on Facebook, as well as save it in JPEG, PNG, BMP, PCX, TIFF, and others.
PhotoScape X is a universal image editing software that provides photo viewing, picture editor, collage maker, GIF creation, screen capture, and more. You can view and organize photos. It is possible to improve and balance color, resize, add effects and images. PhotoScape allows you edit several photos at once and rename several pictures simultaneously, combines several photos into one poster page or into one final photo, and allows you to turn multiple images into a GIF-animated image.
Moreover, you can print photos for special occasions, such as passport photos, or a page with a lining, such as a schedule, calendar, or music paper. You can save the monitor screen in an image file. It is possible to convert RAW format images to JPEG format. You get a chance to find similar faces over the Internet. It is worth mentioning that the image editor is supported not only by the Windows and Mac OS platforms, but it is also suitable for Linux.
DxO PhotoLab is a software for basic photo retouching, and also suitable to correct color defects, remove unnecessary items from a photo. It is popular RAW image conversion software for Mac and PC. This application is among the best photo editing software for beginners. It is a full-fledged image retouching program that is fully integrated into a non-destructive RAW processing workflow and lets you use the automatic mask brush, a gradient filter, and many other useful tools.
In my opinion, a nice and fairly simple interface is the only advantage of this photo enhancer software because if you look at the portrait photo editing tools, the number is very limited. For basic and simple image retouching, this set of options will be quite enough, but the program will not be able to compete with Photoshop. Nevertheless, the program isn’t so bad. Firstly, it has an excellent auto-correction based on the characteristics of the camera and lens. Everything is done in just two clicks, and the result is quite good. Besides, this good photo editing software has one of the best noise reduction tools. Compared to others, it has a lot of extra settings.
Hi there, I'm Ann Young - a photographer, photo retoucher and of course, journalist. Here on FixThePhoto blog you can find all of my reviews, photography and photo editing tips, pricing guides, and photography experiments.