How to Add Presets to Lightroom

Take a look at how to install Lightroom presets in 6 easy steps. This step-by-step guide is recommended for Adobe Lightroom CC presets in presets in .xmp vs lrtemplate format, however, in case of any questions, write me and I will help you.

how to add presets to lightroom

How to Install Lightroom Presets

This method works well on the latest Lightroom Classic CC 8.0 version. If you have problems installing Lightroom presets, I suggest you upgrading your Lightroom.


Step 1. Go to LR Preferences menu.

lightroom presets preferences

Win: Edit > Preferences
Mac: Lightroom > Preferences

Step 2. Tap on the panel, which is called Presets, then you will see appear, namely Show Lightroom Presets Folder, which is marked with a red color. This tab will show where our Presets were saved by default.

Lightroom catalog presets folder

Win: Presets > Show All Other Lightroom Presets
Mac: Presets > Show Lightroom Presets Folder…

Step 3. After clicking the button, you can open the file in which not only the Presets we need are stored, but all the data for Lightroom software. However, you won’t immediately see all the presets, but a folder with the Presets folder. So, open Develop Presets folder.

Lightroom presets folder

Step 4. Opening the Develop Presets folder, you may see another folder called User Presets. Your individual Presets are saved here. Transfer all your presets to it.

Step 5. You’ll have to restart the program, so that all the changes we made will be applied. Without restarting the program, Adobe will not allow downloading new presets.

restart lightroom

Win: Edit > Preferences > Restart Lightroom
Mac: Lightroom > Quit Lightroom

Step 6. Well, now you already know how to install Lightroom presets. All previously loaded presets show up on the left side of the Develop Presets.

presets installing in lightroom cc

Here is a short and detailed video on how to install Lightroom presets.

That's all, guys! So now you know how to install Lightroom presets in detail. Seems like installing presets is not such a complicated process as you thought at the beginning. In total, you had to copy and drag files from one folder to another.

What’s the Difference Between .xmp and lrtemplate?

Lightroom has been using a proprietary file format with the extension .lrtemplate. It includes information and data about which color adjustments and settings are applied to a photo in this photo editing software. When you make color correction in Lightroom, you can save those adjustments so they can be recalled later on. They are saved into a .lrtemplate file.

A .xmp file is similar in many ways to .lrtemplate files. BUT .xmp files contain different data in the file is structured differently. With the latest update in April 2018, Adobe Co. has moved on from the .lrtemplate file format to the .xmp format. Don’t get upset because all .lrtemplate files still work with Adobe Lightroom 4, 5, 6, and Classic CC. All of our free and premium Lightroom presets come in both .lrtemplate and .xmp format.

FAQ about Lightroom Presets

Being a professional photographer, I’m often asked not only how to import Lightroom presets but a variety of other question from newbies. Here I will answer those ones I receive most often, hoping it will help you understand everything concerning these Lightroom effects.

  •  What are presets?

Shortly, Lightroom presets are filters that combine several different actions saved into 1 file. When you add presets to Lightroom, they instantly change values of whites and exposure, color shades and intensity.

  • What kind of software is Adobe Lightroom?

Adobe offers 3 different versions. Two versions are for PC: Lightroom CC and Lightroom Classic CC and the third one is for smartphones: Lightroom Mobile where you can use Lightroom mobile presets too. The fullest and most powerful is Lightroom Classic CC, widely used by photographers (me too).

  • How to use your Lightroom presets on mobile?

If you are going to work with mobile presets, download Lightroom CC Mobile app. Will it be an iPhone or Android? No matter. I recommend you downloading a free Dropbox app to download presets onto your phone.


If you want to use presets on your smartphone and laptop, you will need any Lightroom version and a laptop/desktop that can run the photo editing program to use them on desktop and you will need an Android or iPhone with Lightroom Mobile installed. If you are subscribed to Adobe Creative Cloud you will not need Dropbox to install your mobile presets as this can be done easily and quickly through synchronization.

  • Mobile presets or desktop + mobile presets?

For those who have a Creative Cloud subscription, is variant is better. You will able to edit photos as on your smartphone before publishing in Instagram and you may edit your photos taken by your DSLR or mirrorless camera.

  • Will presets always work well?

Absolutely no. There are so many variables in photo genre, light, colors, shadows, time of the day/year, location, camera settings, lens, image file (RAW or JPEG), etc. The list is endless. I always choose a preset and customize it according to each photo, especially if it is white balance adjustment.

  • How to use one preset for multiple images?

At first, choose one preset and apply it to one image. Customize it until you like the result before using on other photos. Then mark these photographs that you want to enhance and press the Sync button (in the bottom) to open a dialog for choosing specific parameters to be synchronized in this case.

  • Do filters on Windows or Mac work in the same way?

There are no differences in their work. You may use all Lightroom presets and brushes both on Mac and Windows.


  • What is the end-result photo formats?


  • The presets don’t work, what should I do?

For those who followed my advice on how to import presets into Lightroom but it didn’t seem to work, don’t worry, there are minor things you might have missed. First, restart the program. Then update the Database. Still didn’t work? Possibly you placed them in the wrong folder so double-check, and while you’re in it, make sure the files are not ZIPed. In most cases, the above-mentioned problems are the cause.

  • How to remove Lightroom presets?

If you installed many Lightroom presets and chose the ones you like, you may delete a few needless options.

Right-click on an effect. There will open a drop-down menu where you can select “Delete”. To cancel the action press Ctrl + Z.

Go to the Lightroom presets location on your PC and delete them.

Free Wedding Lightroom Presets

To take cool photos all the time is impossible. I suggest you using these Free Wedding Lightroom Presets made especially for event photo editing.

1. Free Lightroom B&W Preset

wedding black and white lightroom presetwedding black and white lightroom preset

The black and white effect gives more attention to the composition of photos, details. To get a professional monochrome photo, you need to adjust the contrast, shadows and sharpness and then you will get the desired effect.

2. Free Wedding Matte Lr Preset

lightroom wedding matte presetlightroom wedding matte preset

A photo with a matte preset looks especially attractive, because it takes on a more classic look with a slight fading effect. This preset eliminates deep shadows, corrects colors and slightly mutes them.

3. Free Lightroom Wedding Preset

lightroom wedding contrast presetlightroom wedding contrast preset

FixThePhoto’s retouchers studied the specifics of wedding photos in detail and picked up the colors that are ideal for this genre, especially I recommend them for photos taken outdoors.

4. Free Lightroom Warm Preset

lightroom wedding warm presetlightroom wedding warm preset

Pastel colors give photos of tenderness and lightness by eliminating the shadows, pink filter, softening the tone. So, if you like experimenting with color shades and color temperature, try these pastel presets for Lightroom.

Free Portrait Lightroom Presets

Portrait photography is a type of photography when you focus all the attention on a person’s face/eyes/smile. If anyone is willing to get even more spectacular results in portrait photography, I advise using our selection of Free Lightroom Presets for Portraits.

5. Free Dreamy Portrait Lightroom Preset

lightroom vintage presetlightroom vintage preset

Along with film effects, the vintage style has also become more popular in recent years - warm shades, slightly adjusted white balance and increased color saturation make the portrait brighter and more vivid. We recommend using this free Lightroom preset for studio photos, especially if the photo was designed with an imitation of vintage style.

6. Free Lightroom Contrast Preset

lightroom contrast presetlightroom contrast preset

Correctly matched contrast can add volume even to a dull photo. This preset will make the shadows on your portraits deeper, try it and you will be surprised at the results!

7. Free Lightroom Film Preset

lightroom film presetlightroom film preset

If you like old film camera’s effect, pay special attention to these Free Film Lightroom Presets. You can try the best ready-made presets taken from the top mainstream film samples to improve colors and convey contrast more naturally.

8. Free Lightroom Vintage Preset

lightroom vintage presetlightroom vintage preset

Some of you have probably seen Free Vintage Lightroom Presets in the retro style that look like they were taken in the previous centuries. These tools will help you convey similar effects as tenderness along with touching mood. Download these vintage styled presets, fades, light leaks and more.

9. Free Lightroom Matte Preset

lightroom matte presetlightroom matte preset

While editing photos, I advise you to use Lightroom Matte Presets to add warmer colors that are designed to convey a certain nostalgic feeling. A unique collection, which I often use to create warm or delicate tones.

10. Free Monochrome Lightroom Preset

lightroom black and white presetlightroom black and white preset

Emotions that these Lightroom effects cause, cannot be reproduced in color photography. This is a special charm and color scheme that makes a photo truly magical. Moreover, these presets will help you reduce overexposure and distracting sunrays that caused unpleasant skin color.

Ann Young

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. read more