The Best Photo-Editing Software in 2022 (10 Picks)

A post By : Simon Ringsmuth The best photo-editing programs (for all budgets)The best photo-editing programs (for all budgets) Determining the best photo-editing software international relations and security network ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate about identifying the program that has the most features or is available for the cheapest price. Rather, it ’ mho about finding the software that meets your needs and does what you want .
If you ’ re a casual photographer who enjoys making minor tweaks to mobile snapshots, the best edit program for you is going to be identical unlike from a seasoned professional who makes a living from photography. It can be unmanageable to sort through all the available apps and programs, but this tilt – featuring the top 10 options on the commercialize in 2022 – will help you select a photograph editor program that ’ south equitable right for you.

Best photo-editing software. Leaves against a blurry background.Best photo-editing software. Leaves against a blurry background.With the right photo-editing software, you can work wonders on your images. I tweaked the above picture in Photoshop to get the colors to look just right while eliminating lots of spots and imperfections.

How to pick the best photo-editing program

As you sort through the countless editing options available to you, there are a few general criteria to keep in mind .
If you ’ re a founder, I recommend prioritizing ease of practice over a laundry list of features. Look for options that are cheap and that let you open a photograph, make some quick edits, and get back to your day. But don ’ metric ton get caught up searching for the cheapest program ; the edit landscape is littered with abandoned release or low-cost apps that blew up and then promptly flamed out, leaving legions of torment photographers in their wake island .
If you ’ re a more advance photographer, look for photo-editing software that ’ sulfur been around for respective years and boasts a broad base of users with an active on-line community. And while you inquiry, check YouTube for tutorial videos and search the developer ’ s web site for forums, FAQs, and similar materials. not only are such items a valuable source of information and aid, but they ’ ra besides testify of a robust software ecosystem and developer committedness. If you ’ re going to invest your time and money into learning and using a program, you need to know that it will end long into the future .
Best photo-editing software. Photoshop.Best photo-editing software. Photoshop.Adobe Photoshop has everything any editor could want. Though this list of the best photo-editing programs isn ’ triiodothyronine presented in any especial order, I would be derelict if I didn ’ thymine put the grandfather of all photograph editors, Adobe Photoshop, at the top. Its identical name is synonymous with image editing, and more than 30 years since it was first base released, it shows no signs of slowing down. Photoshop contains more features than just about any other edit software ; it besides has an enormous array of tutorials, videos, message boards, social media groups, and even college-level courses to help you hone your skills .
back in 2013, in a highly controversial go, Adobe switched to a subscription-only price exemplar for Photoshop. This means that casual photographers who want to try the plan can no long make a erstwhile purchase but must rather subscribe to the Creative Cloud platform. additionally, Photoshop struggles to walk a fine line between supporting users who have used the program for decades and adding new features that compete with more whippersnapper advanced persona editors. The consequence is an interface that, for novice photographers, is a dispiritedly confusing mess of buttons, menus, sliders, and options .
Photoshop is not for the faint of center, but for those will to invest significant time into learning how it works, the rewards are well worth the feat .

  • Pros
  • • A huge amount of tutorials and resources, both online and in print, to help you learn
  • • Able to perform nearly any type of photo editing imaginable
  • Cons
  • • Subscription-only pricing model
  • • Extensive features can confuse new users
  • • Simple tasks in other image editors can involve complex steps in Photoshop

Best photo-editing software. Affinity Photo.Best photo-editing software. Affinity Photo.Most photographers would be well-served by Affinity Photo’s set of capabilities. Professional, amateur, and hobbyist photographers who require a robust effigy editor with a ample fructify of features should look no further than Affinity Photo. While its list of capabilities isn ’ thyroxine quite ampere comprehensive as compared to editors such as Photoshop and GIMP, Affinity Photo can easily meet the needs of most folks who need to edit photos but preceptor ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate caution about progress 3D graphics or AI-enhanced tricks. It has advanced RAW march options, supports unlimited layers, and works seamlessly with other Serif apps like Affinity Publisher and Affinity Design to give you a complete throughout graphics-creation work flow solution .
I ’ ve used the entire Serif software suite for years, and I ’ ve found it to offer a fantastic alternate to more democratic commercial counterparts. While my image editing needs aren ’ t equally boost as full-time professional photographers, I have not yet encountered a scenario that Affinity Photo could not handle. Best of all, it ’ sulfur available as a erstwhile purchase – not a subscription – which should benefit many casual and enthusiast photographers who can ’ metric ton quite commit to monthly or annual software fees .

  • Pros
  • • Rich set of features to handle the needs of most photographers
  • • Supports Wacom and other tablets, which are often used for detailed editing and retouching
  • • One-time purchase instead of a subscription
  • Pros
  • • Not as comprehensive as Adobe Photoshop

Best photo-editing software. Pixelmator Pro.Best photo-editing software. Pixelmator Pro.Pixelmator is great for iPhone users who want to move beyond the capabilities of the built-in camera app. Photography purists might balk at the inclusion body of a mobile-only app in this tilt, but there ’ s no getting around the fact that the iPhone is one of the most democratic cameras in the earth. And Pixelmator Photo is a full-featured, desktop-class image editor program that gives iPhone users the ability to do Photoshop-style editing on little screens for a very reasonable price .
It ’ sulfur significant to set expectations before buying Pixelmator Photo. It ’ s a far cry from Photoshop, then don ’ metric ton expect a beyond-comprehensive edit cortege – yet it however has batch of tools for hobbyists and even serious photographers who want to use a mobile call to do high-level double edit. Its feature set ranks somewhere between Lightroom and Photoshop ; it ’ s besides very easy to use and features a rich library of tutorials and walkthroughs. Pixelmator Photo does require a belittled subscription tip, but unlike other mobile editing apps, you can purchase a life subscription for under $ 60 .

  • Pros
  • • Brings powerful photo editing to mobile phones
  • • One-time purchase option for those who don’t want subscription fees
  • • Machine-learning algorithms help with many editing tasks
  • Cons:
  • • iPhone only, which leaves Android users out in the cold
  • • Similar set of tools as Lightroom Mobile, so if you’re already subscribed to Lightroom, Pixelmator Photo might not be worth it
  • • Free version is very limited

Best photo-editing software. GIMP.Best photo-editing software. GIMP.GIMP is so powerful enough that it should cost hundreds of dollars, but it’s completely free. For photographers on a budget, it ’ south hard to choose a better editing platform than GIMP. Despite the odd name ( which stands for Gnu Image Manipulation Program ), this program has a bevy of features and options that come for the best monetary value anyone could ask for : nothing at all. ( In other words, GIMP is loose ! )
But don ’ thyroxine blend monetary value with quality. There is batch in GIMP to satisfy the most demand photographers ; in fact, its toolset is therefore ample and expansive it can easily overwhelm new users. But for those bequeath to invest some time into learning the ins and out of this program, it ’ ll output impressive results .
GIMP has been developed by members of the open-source residential district for decades, and in that time, it ’ south evolved to meet the needs of modern photographers while staying true to its core mission : giving people of all skill levels a herculean suite of editing tools. The layer-based interface will feel comfortable to longtime Photoshop users, and editing options include brushes, paths, text, warp transform, versatile excerpt tools, and more .
While GIMP is notoriously unmanageable to learn and some actions are much slower than you might expect, you can ’ t beat the price – it ’ s one area where GIMP stands head and shoulders above about every other program on this list !

  • Pros
  • • Free and available on Mac, Windows, and even Linux computers
  • • Incredible set of editing features, enough to rival most commercial image editors
  • • Extensive online resources for help and support
  • Cons:
  • • The interface is somewhat complicated and takes time to learn
  • • Some actions are very slow, especially compared to others on this list
  • • No built-in tutorials to help new users

Best photo-editing software. Photopea.Best photo-editing software. Photopea.Photopea works in any web browser and comes with a host of useful tools. Photopea is one of those applications that about seems besides adept to be true. It ’ s a full-featured image editor program much like Photoshop, it ’ s free to use like GIMP, and it ’ s relatively easy to pick up and learn like Pixelmator. It ’ second besides browser-based, which means there ’ s no software to download and install. It has all the edit tools that casual and hobbyist photographers might need, and it works with all the most common file formats, including PSD, SVG, and TIFF. You don ’ metric ton even need an account to use it, therefore there ’ s literally nothing to lose by going to the Photopea web site and testing it out .
That said, Photopea does come with some authoritative caveats. While it ’ s relatively slowly to use for those who are already familiar with image editors, the many buttons, tools, and menu will probable overwhelm beginners. There ’ second besides no support for 3D objects, and while Photopea is amazingly impressive from a technical foul point of view, it ’ second much slower than the contest. Granted, it ’ s a free visualize editor program that you can use from any browser, but don ’ t expect the lapp performance as early programs .

  • Pros
  • • Browser-based, which means you won’t need to install any software or download any apps
  • • Supports all the common image-editing tools as well as many advanced options
  • • The free version has very few limitations, while the subscription version is reasonably priced and even includes cloud storage
  • Cons:
  • • Slow compared to dedicated programs such as Photoshop and Luminar
  • • No artificial intelligence or machine-learning tools to speed up your workflow
  • • Technically possible to use on a mobile phone, but I wouldn’t recommend it

Best photo-editing software. Pixlr E.Best photo-editing software. Pixlr E.To edit in Pixlr E, all you need is a web browser and a sense of curiosity and fun. Pixlr E is a browser-based image editor that ’ s similar to Photopea, though it boasts a slenderly different invention philosophy. The plan offers an impressive array of tools and options, but the interface should appeal to more casual and hobbyist photographers.

It ’ south incredibly elementary to get started : just navigate to the Pixlr web site, click the “ Start a Photo Editing Project ” option, upload an trope, and begin your editing. Everything you do takes place right in your browser window, which means you ’ ll never need to worry about software installations ( though there are downloadable offline apps available ) or app updates .
The tradeoff is a lower tied of functionality and a more simplistic design compared to the heavy hitters on this list. flush sol, Pixlr E is a solid option for anyone looking for a full-bodied editing solution that won ’ triiodothyronine cost hundreds of dollars .
With many different brush options, a layer-based work flow, dozens of trope filters, and even some basic animation tools, Pixlr E probable has all the power you might need to handle your double edit. But some of the more advanced options require a monthly or annual paid subscription, and you won ’ thyroxine find the like level of in-depth RAW development options compared to other programs on this list. A miss of export options besides holds Pixlr E binding – though for anyone who wants an impressive browser-based image editor program with lots of features at a great price, Pixlr E is a great choice .

  • Pros
  • • Very easy to get started, which lowers the barrier to entry for beginners and new photographers
  • • Fully browser-based, with some downloadable offline companion apps, too
  • • The free version has a variety of useful tools and features, and the paid version is reasonably priced
  • Cons
  • • Few customization settings for tweaking the interface to your liking
  • • The paid version has access to premium support, while the free version’s support is limited to online documentation and a relatively small community of Pixlr users

Best photo-editing software. Luminar.Best photo-editing software. Luminar.Luminar relies heavily into AI technology, and the results are stunning. Ah, Luminar. What a breath of fresh air amidst a ocean of all-too-similar photograph editing applications ! I ’ ve been using Skylum ’ s Luminar since the company was named MacPhun, and while it ’ s not my particular cup of tea, it absolutely deserves unplayful consideration for all photographers ( and particularly beginner and hobbyist image-makers ) .
Luminar has evolved well over the years and works as a plugin for Lightroom and Photoshop equally well as a standalone application. It ’ south besides available as a erstwhile purchase, which makes it an ideal alternate to Photoshop and other subscription-only options .
Best photo-editing software. Female elk against a blue sky.Best photo-editing software. Female elk against a blue sky.This is the original version of the picture featured at the top of this section. Luminar replaced the sky with a single click! Luminar ’ s work flow solutions and edit tools are focused on solving editing problems with artificial intelligence as opposed to giving you dozens of individual tools with pixel-level control. It ’ s a great program for those hoping to enhance portraits, replace the flip, remove and edit backgrounds, or flush add portrayal confuse via automatize tools, and the program ’ s sliders let you adjust all sorts of parameters. If you want great-looking images while letting software tools do most of the heavy lift – so you can get away from your desk and back to using your camera – then Luminar is an outstanding pick .

  • Pros
  • • Amazing suite of AI-powered tools to enhance your images quickly and easily
  • • Easy to import an image, click a few buttons, and get impressive results
  • • Each type of edit has filters to let you tweak the results to your liking
  • Cons
  • • Standalone purchase option is available, but you’re encouraged to subscribe and/or purchase additional plugins
  • • No fine-grained control over every element in your images
  • • Limited exporting options

Best photo-editing software. Photoworks.Best photo-editing software. Photoworks.The big advantage of Photoworks is its price (along with the set of useful editing features). While many of the trope editors on this list are available for both Mac and Windows computers, PhotoWorks is slightly unique in that it ’ s available only for Windows. That puts it in a act of a unique position in the edit earth, and if you prefer Dell, HP, or Lenovo over Apple, you have access to a herculean software creature that can well improve your photography work flow. In terms of editing options, PhotoWorks isn ’ thyroxine in the same league as Photoshop or Pixelmator Photo, but it ’ second besides significantly less expensive, which makes a big remainder for many people .
rather than feature endless palettes of buttons and tools, PhotoWorks takes a more minimalistic approach. Once you import an image, you can use Lightroom-style sliders to adjust basic parameters like exposure, contrast, saturation, and vibrance ( all of which will be immediately conversant to Lightroom users ). You can besides use sliders to adjust colors and sharpness and use one-click options to remove backgrounds, edit portraits, and more. The results are identical dependable, particularly considering the minimal sum of editing time required .
bottom line : PhotoWorks is an impressive visualize editor, and the basic adaptation is available for only $ 20 ( while the high-end option costs precisely $ 80 ) .

  • Pros
  • • The standard version is very reasonably priced and will meet the needs of many casual and hobbyist photographers
  • • Features a wide variety of adjustment sliders in addition to automatic edits
  • • Supports easily adding text, watermarks, and logos
  • Cons
  • • Editing tools are especially comprehensive compared to Photoshop
  • • Can open RAW files, but the developing options could be better
  • • Noise-removal tools need improvement

Best photo-editing software. PaintShop Pro.Best photo-editing software. PaintShop Pro.PaintShop Pro has been around longer than many photographers have been alive, and it remains a solid choice among image editors. While PaintShop Pro might not have the lapp grade of name recognition as some of its peers, photographers who use Windows computers and want an fabulously able software cock to handle their image-editing needs would do well to consider the program. It has a rich people history that goes all the way back to the early on 1990s, and quite than let the software stagnate, the developers have continued to add new features to meet the needs of advanced photographers ; the result is a program that more than holds its own among a sea of competitors .
The user interface about feels like an amalgam of early editing software such as Photoshop and Luminar. There are plenty of buttons and tools, including brush, crop, redeye removal, create shapes, work with lines and text, and more. You besides have access to layers, masks, effects, and a herculean choice creature that will make Photoshop users feel as though they have been overpaying for their software .
holocene AI-powered additions allow you to remove backgrounds, retouch portraits, and even restore old photograph with impressive results – and while PaintShop pro may not be quite as herculean or customizable as some of its peers, it ’ s an outstanding choice for photographers who want a knock-down editor without paying for a recurring subscription .

  • Pros
  • • An impressive number of tools and automatic enhancements that’ll suit the needs of most photographers.
  • • Supports RAW import and allows you to export in a variety of formats.
  • • Multiple workspaces let you customize the editing environment to suit your individual preferences
  • Cons
  • • Windows-only
  • • Can slow down from time to time

Best photo-editing software. Acorn.Best photo-editing software. Acorn.Acorn keeps things simple and basic. Sometimes, that’s all you need. Acorn is a Mac-only program, and in some ways, it feels like a novel change of tempo for photographers who ’ ve grow aweary of expensive subscriptions, hand-holding auto-enhancements, and all-in-one editors that try to do everything and end up succeeding at nothing. Acorn is basically a Photoshop that ’ s been stripped down to the basics – with a price to match. For just $ 40, you get a layer-based persona editor program featuring a useful suite of tools and effects that can take your photography quite far .
The Acorn work flow feels fast and simple : Download the plan, open a photograph, and you ’ re off to the races. You can make selections, add layers, cut-in textbook, and use dozens of filters that mimic the functionality of far more expensive programs. You won ’ triiodothyronine find any artificial intelligence or cloud-based edit features, but you will get a plan that more than meets the needs of beginners while besides offering options that appeal to more advanced photographers .

  • Pros
  • • Simple and easy to use
  • • Includes the most common tools from more popular image editors
  • • Allows for a combination of bitmap and vector-based editing, which is ideal for image editors who also dabble in graphic design
  • Cons
  • • Priced similarly to Affinity Photo but with far fewer features
  • • Mac lone, with no iPhone or iPad option
  • • Limited community support makes troubleshooting very frustrating

Which editing program is best for you?

Best photo-editing software. Close-up of eye.Best photo-editing software. Close-up of eye.Everyone has different needs, but whatever your situation, you can find an image editor that’ll do what you want. It ’ mho difficult to identify the single best editing program. After all, every photographer has a different plant of requirements ! however, there are three options that stand out for novice, fancier, and advanced photographers that I can recommend without hesitation :
Beginners : Pixlr E. The basic version is free to use, offers a childlike and visually appealing exploiter interface, and works with any web browser ( so there are no apps to install ). If you want to go beyond plainly swiping through filters on your phone, Pixlr E is a bang-up choice .
Enthusiast : Affinity Photo. This program has very come into its own over the past two years and has shown no signs of slowing down. It has a deep specify of tools, a robust on-line community of users, and it integrates seamlessly with other Affinity apps ( in character you ever want to expand your repertoire ).

Advanced : Photoshop. Yes, it requires a subscription, but you get an frightful batch for your money, and Adobe continues to add useful enhancements on a regular basis. Photoshop has been the gold standard for years, and with dear reason. sometimes, the most popular program in truth is the best .

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