5 of the Best Free Photo Editing Apps

by Aleena Islam
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In today’s society, we take lots of photos and upload them to social media sites such as Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat! To edit our photos, we probably use some kind of photo editing app. The thing is that there are SO many editing apps available to choose from, and it can get difficult at times to know which ones are worth downloading. It took me a while to find some apps that I liked, but here are five photo editing apps that have never failed me.

1. Snapseed

Before vs after edit on snapseed
Before vs. After Edit on Snapseed

Snapseed is by far my absolute favorite editing app. It has an incredibly wide array of features for use at no cost. Part of why I love Snapseed is that it allows for precise and full control over exposure, contrast, sharpening, etc. Some of my favorite features include:

  • Ability to adjust ambiance. Ambiance is a feature I haven’t seen in many other apps and I really like how ambiance can alter an image.
  • Selecting which specific parts of the image are being adjusted.
  • Ability to remove an object from the picture with little difficulty.

Snapseed is a great app to download on both iOS and Android for both amateur editors and professionals alike. The large range of editing tools will ensure that every picture can be edited into something amazing!

2. VSCO

VSCO is a photography app that has gained popularity over the last few years. It can be described as being similar to Instagram, but VSCO is much more focused on allowing artists and creators to express themselves through photography.

VSCO Filters
Image of VSCO Filters

VSCO is very well known for its filters. I tend not to use filters that often, but VSCO offers filters that are subtle and do not overpower the image. In addition, VSCO filters, or “presets” as they are called, are able to be adjusted, meaning you can lower the intensity and strength of the filter. They have elegant black and white filters, grainy film-like ones, and just about every filter for every type of image.

I enjoy VSCO because it is a great editing tool and also a platform to post photos of nature, landscapes, etc and join a community of fellow creators. I definitely recommend this app!

3. Adobe Lightroom

Next on the list of best editing apps is Adobe Lightroom. While its full repertoire of tools can be bought for $4.99 a month, the free version still has amazing features. Lightroom offers extensive control over color and the finer details of your image.

Color Mix Tool on photo editing app Lightroom
View of the Color Mix Tool on Lightroom

Lightroom offers the color mix tool, shown in the above image, to help you really enhance and mix up the colors in your photo. In addition, you can access any photo that you are editing on both desktop and mobile.

4. RNI Films

A friend recommended this app to me and I really love it! RNI Films is a hidden gem in the world of photo editing. Its black and white and vintage filters are perfect for giving your images a classic and timeless feel.

Edit using photo editing app RNI Films
Image Edited Using Vintage Filter

RNI Films offers classic filters and tools such as exposure, contrast, grain, and fade. I love using this app when I’m looking for a great black and white filter or to edit my photo in a vintage way. Definitely check out this little-known app!

5. PicsArt

This one is a little different from the rest of the apps on this list. PicsArt allows you to use decorative stickers, effects, text, and frames to edit and draw on your photos to create a work of art.

Before and After on PicsArt
Before vs After Edit on PicsArt

As in the image above, PicsArt lets you be super creative and turn your images into art! There are dramatic effects and filters that can change the texture and entire personality of a photo! I use PicsArt to spice up my images with stickers and subtle hints of bold effects. There is also a photo-sharing aspect of PicsArt like there is with VSCO, but I personally have never used it.


Hopefully, this list will help you find the perfect photo editing app for all your images! Let us know in the comments which of these you use!

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