Best Photo Editing Software 2024: improve, make, and motivate

provide many features and tools to edit, retouch, and improve photos to achieve desired effects or quality.

Personal experience has shown me that best photo editing software has changed a great deal in the last few years. Not long ago, we didn’t have tools that were even close to what we have now. Thanks to the power of smart AI technology, things that used to take hours of careful work can now be done with surprisingly little trouble. This frees up your time so you can do the creative things that really get you excited. Basically, there has never been a better time to think about getting new software for editing photos.

But what is the best software for editing photos at the moment? Creative people will know that Photoshop used to be the best photo editor, with little in the way of competition. Now, though, there are a lot of paid and free options to choose from. And because each user needs the best photo editors for very different reasons, we cover everything on this page, from simple programs that are great for making quick changes to images to complex tools made for professional image editors.

If you especially required to edit on the go, check out our guide to the best photo apps, and our buy of the best laptops for photo editing if you want to be able to keep your images looking their best. Below we have mentioned some of the best Photo Editing Software.

What to Consider When Choosing Photo Editing Software?

Using the right photo editing software can make a big difference in how well and quickly you edit your photos. Here are some important things to think about before you decide:

Skill Level and Experience: Think about how good you are at editing photos and how much experience you have. Some software is made for beginners and has easy-to-use interfaces, while others are made for experts and have more complex features.

Features and Functions: There are different levels of features and functions in each software package. Think about what tools and features you need for retouching, color correction, filters, layers, and other editing tasks.

Ease of Use: The user interface of the software should be easy to understand and use. The learning curve for complex software might be steeper, and simple tools might not have as many advanced features.

Compatibility with platforms: Make sure the software works with your operating system (Windows, macOS, Linux, etc.). Some software works on more than one platform, while others only work on certain operating systems.

Check to see if the software can work with the file formats you usually use. You should be able to open, edit, and save images in different formats, such as JPEG, PNG, RAW, etc.

Best Photo Editing Software Comparison Table

The best photo editing software is listed in the table below. It looks at important things like tools, ease of use, versatility, and cost. This comparison is meant to help users choose the best editing software for their projects, whether they are for work or for fun.

SoftwarePlatformAdvanced EditingRAW EditingAI EnhancementsOrganizational ToolsPlugins/ExtensionsOfficial Link
Photoshop ExpressWeb, MobileLimitedNoYesBasicNoVisit Website
Photoshop ElementsWindows, MacYesLimitedYesYesYesVisit Website
Capture One Pro 22Windows, MacYesYesNoAdvancedYesVisit Website
Photo Pos ProWindowsYesYesNoBasicYesVisit Website
Adobe Photoshop CCWindows, MacYesYesYesAdvancedYesVisit Website
DxO PhotoLab 5Windows, MacYesYesYesBasicYesVisit Website
Google PhotosWeb, MobileLimitedNoYesBasicNoVisit Website
Corel PaintShop ProWindowsYesYesYesAdvancedYesVisit Website
Exposure Software X7Windows, MacYesYesYesBasicYesVisit Website
DxO Nik Collection 4.3Windows, MacLimitedNoNoNoYesVisit Website

Photoshop Express

Best Photo Editing Software

Features

  • User-friendly interface for quick edits.
  • Basic adjustments, filters, and effects.
  • Crop, rotate, and straighten tools.
  • Integration with Adobe Creative Cloud.

If the preceding options appear too derivative to you, or if you want more of the Adobe experience without the associated cost, Photoshop Express is another option to consider. Although it is more limited than the premium Photoshop model, the Express version has several excellent options for photo editing and a much more gradual learning curve. Photoshop Express, with an interface that betrays its mobile roots, provides quick and easy access to slide bar adjustments and one-touch fixes for photos of all types.

Prepackaged effects make quick and dramatic changes to images to improve coloring and contrast; crop and transform tools allow you to change the orientation and focus of a photograph. And Details allows you to control sharpening and noise. It only supports raw camera files, TIFF, JPG, and PNG files, but Photoshop Express is a free app that you can use on your Windows, iOS, or Android device without any problems.

Pros

  • User-friendly interface.
  • Basic editing tools for quick adjustments.
  • Integration with Adobe Creative Cloud.

Cons

  • Limited features compared to full Photoshop.
  • Online-only version may require internet connection.

Adobe Photoshop Elements

Best Photo Editing Software

Features

  • Powerful editing tools with a simplified interface.
  • Guided edits for various creative effects.
  • Automatic organization and tagging of photos.
  • Integration with Adobe Sensei AI technology.

While there aren’t many changes from last year’s version, Adobe Photoshop Elements remains our top pick for best photo editing software overall due to its ease of use, fun creativity, and underlying power. While not much has changed since last year’s version, Adobe’s excellent interface and robust toolset, as well as the fact that Photoshop Elements works on both Macs and PCs, make it the best photo editing software available.

As mentioned above, three interfaces (Guided Edits, Quick Edits, and Expert Mode) make this program usable by users of all levels. If you are in a hurry, Adobe Sense’s artificial intelligence can intelligently analyze and edit your images, saving you one or two steps. A new Subject Selection tool makes it easy to create cutouts of people and pets, while the Smooth Skin tool is excellent for removing wrinkles.

Pros

  • User-friendly interface.
  • Good balance between basic and advanced editing features.
  • Integration with Adobe Creative Cloud.

Cons

  • Not as powerful as full Photoshop.
  • Some advanced features may be missing.

Capture One Pro 22

Best Photo Editing Software

Features

  • Advanced RAW image processing.
  • Precise color grading and correction.
  • Tethered shooting for studio photography.
  • Customizable workspace and powerful cataloging.

Capture One can be used as a tethered capture and editing tool for studio photographers using a’sessions’ workflow, as well as a Lightroom-style image cataloguing, searching, and non-destructive editing tool. This software includes a new HDR merge feature that only works with raw files but is extremely effective and natural looking, as well as a panorama merge feature. Capture One operates in a single window rather than in Lightroom-style’modules,’ and it includes a highly customizable set of ‘tool tabs.’

One of the most noticeable differences is the local layer-based adjustment system, which makes it much easier to see and edit changes made to work, and now includes ‘parametric’ linear and radial gradient masks that can be edited later.

Capture One’s conversions appear smoother and sharper than Lightroom’s, and Phase One’s new partnership with Fujifilm allows it to produce some of the best Fujifilm processing you’re likely to see, as well as recreating Fujifilm’s film simulation modes. Fujifilm, Nikon, and Sony users can get discounted versions of the software for one brand, but if you work with files from multiple cameras, choose the version for all cameras.

Pros

  • Powerful RAW image editing capabilities.
  • Advanced color grading tools.
  • Tethered shooting support.

Cons

  • Learning curve for new users.
  • Relatively high cost compared to other software.

Photo Pos Pro

Best Photo Editing Software

Features

  • Wide range of filters and effects.
  • Layers and masks support for advanced edits.
  • Vector editing capabilities.
  • Selection tools for precise adjustments.

Photo Pos Pro is a good free photo editing program for Windows. The first thing to know is that the software prioritizes ease of use and customization of the user experience. In fact, when you first start the software, you are asked a series of questions about how you intend to use it. When it asks you to choose between two main interfaces (based on your level of experience in photo editing), the most important question it will ask you is whether you want an interface for experts (PRO) or one for novices (Novice).

The interface you choose will determine how you edit with the software in the future. The PRO interface looks somewhat like Photoshop and, as you would expect, has an abundance of advanced editing features. There are layers, curves, clipping, brushes, effects, rulers and grids, and color and lighting adjustment options. The interface is packed with tools for intensive editing, and because of this it can be a bit overwhelming with its many small icons and various menu types.

Pros

  • Wide range of editing tools.
  • Free version available.
  • Suitable for beginners and intermediate users.

Cons

  • User interface might feel dated.
  • Some advanced features may be lacking.

Adobe Photoshop CC

Best Photo Editing Software

Features

  • Industry-standard for professional image editing.
  • Extensive array of tools and features.
  • Support for layers, masks, and advanced retouching.
  • Integration with Adobe Creative Cloud.

Adobe Photoshop CC has it all when it comes to photo editing software. This latest version relies more and more on Sensei, Adobe’s highly regarded artificial intelligence engine, to enable a slew of impressive features. Sky Replacement and new Refine Edge selections are among the most visible. Furthermore, Neural Filters aid in the simplification of complex workflows.

Adobe Photoshop CC is available only as a subscription service, and for $53/month, you get 20 CC desktop and mobile apps, including Illustrator, Dreamweaver, Premier Pro, InDesign, After Effects and Photoshop as part of the Creative Cloud package, which includes fonts and 100GB of cloud storage. The Photography plan costs $10 per month and includes Photoshop, Lightroom, and Lightroom CC for desktop, plus 20GB of online storage. The same Photography Plan plus 1TB of online storage is offered for $20 per month.

Pros

  • Industry-standard software with comprehensive features.
  • Advanced photo manipulation and editing capabilities.
  • Extensive plugin support.

Cons

  • High subscription cost.
  • Steeper learning curve for beginners.

DxO PhotoLab 5

Best Photo Editing Software

Features

  • AI-powered image enhancement.
  • Excellent noise reduction and sharpness tools.
  • Advanced lens corrections.
  • Customizable workspace and presets.

DxO PhotoLab is the successor to DxO Optics Pro and includes the local adjustment tools from DxO’s acquisition of Nik Collection software, making it a more powerful and comprehensive photo editing solution. PhotoLab’s real strength is its superb raw processing, highly effective DeepPRIME denoise tool (Elite edition only), excellent local image adjustments, and highly effective (and automatic) lens corrections. PhotoLab produces images of exceptional quality.

To obtain DxO’s DeepPRIME and ClearView Plus functions, the more expensive Elite edition is required, while to apply perspective corrections (formerly integrated in Optics Pro) the DxO ViewPoint add-on is needed. Also added to the DxO software suite is PureRAW, a raw batch processing tool that converts normal raw files to “Linear DNG.”

Other programs continue to treat these files as raw files, with all the tonal and color characteristics you would expect, but DxO’s superior demosaicing, noise reduction, and lens correction features have already been applied to these files. PhotoLab 5 finally includes support for Fujifilm X-Trans files, as well as a new selection/masking tool and other improvements.

Pros

  • Excellent automatic adjustments using AI.
  • Advanced lens and camera correction tools.
  • Local adjustments with U Point technology.

Cons

  • Limited content-aware editing features.
  • Some advanced features require a separate purchase.

Google Photos

Best Photo Editing Software

Features

  • Automatic cloud-based backup of photos.
  • Basic editing tools for quick adjustments.
  • Simple sharing and collaboration features.
  • AI-powered search and organization.

Google Photos is superior to any other tool for organizing and consolidating all of your photo libraries, regardless of location — which is why it’s also on our list of the best photo storage services. It’s cross-platform, syncs across all your devices, and can be downloaded to Android and iOS devices as well, so you can access it from anywhere. Unfortunately, Google will no longer allow you to store an unlimited number of photos in the cloud after June 2021; instead, they will count against your 15GB Google Drive limit.

However, in terms of editing tools, Google Photos provides only the bare necessities, allowing you to quickly prepare images for easy sharing. It does include facial recognition, allowing you to quickly search for all photos of a specific person. This software also automatically tags photos with keywords like Sunset, Forests, Cars, and others, but you can’t tag photos yourself or add custom keywords. It works best when combined with another app that has more editing features, such as Adobe Photoshop Elements.

Pros

  • Free cloud storage for photos.
  • Basic editing and organization tools.
  • Easy sharing and collaboration.

Cons

  • Limited advanced editing features.
  • Privacy concerns related to data storage.

Corel PaintShop Pro

Best Photo Editing Software

Features

  • Comprehensive photo editing suite.
  • Advanced editing tools and creative effects.
  • Text and vector tools for graphic design.
  • AI-powered features for enhancing photos.

Corel PaintShop Pro is a powerful program that is easy to learn and in many ways superior to Photoshop Elements because of its additional tools, such as 360-degree photo editing. It also has touchscreen support and a new, simplified work area.

PaintShop Pro (and its updated version, PaintShop Pro Ultimate) is an excellent value because it is generally less expensive than Photoshop Elements. the most significant drawback of Corel compared to Photoshop is that Photoshop Elements is that it is available for both macOS and Windows PCs, whereas PaintShop Pro is Windows-only.

Pros

  • Wide range of editing tools.
  • Affordable compared to some other options.
  • User-friendly interface.

Cons

  • Not as feature-rich as Adobe Photoshop.
  • Some features might feel less polished.

Exposure Software Exposure X7

Best Photo Editing Software

Features

  • Film emulation presets for creative looks.
  • Non-destructive editing workflow.
  • Advanced color and lighting adjustments.
  • Integrated organizing and browsing.

Exposure X7, like ON1 Photo RAW 2022, is a relatively unknown program that deserves far more attention. It’s an all-in-one photo editing and browsing tool that specializes in analog film effects and includes a large library of simple one-click preset effects. It doesn’t have image layers (only adjustment layers), so you can’t combine photos, but that won’t bother many photographers.

Exposure X7, like ON1 Photo RAW 2022, is a relatively unknown program that deserves far more attention. It’s an all-in-one photo editing and browsing tool that specializes in analog film effects and includes a large library of simple one-click preset effects. It doesn’t have image layers (only adjustment layers), so you can’t combine photos, but that won’t bother many photographers.

Pros

  • Film emulation and creative effects.
  • User-friendly interface.
  • Non-destructive editing workflow.

Cons

  • Less advanced than some competitors for pixel-level editing.
  • Smaller user base, potentially fewer tutorials/support.

DxO Nik Collection 4.3

Best Photo Editing Software

Features

  • Collection of creative plugins for editing.
  • Analog film and vintage effects.
  • Precise retouching and selective adjustments.
  • Integration with DxO PhotoLab and Adobe Photoshop.

Nik Collection 4 is the most recent version of the popular Nik suite, and it includes eight separate plug-ins that can also be used as standalone programs. Analog Efex Pro excels at analog/darkroom effects, whereas Color Efex Pro is a massively powerful suite of filters that can be used individually or combined into’recipes.’ Silver Efex Pro is still the best digital black and white plug-in available, and this version includes a new, more modern interface, a new ClearView option, and more powerful selective control points.

Viveza receives the same treatment, progressing from a simple local adjustment tool to a much more powerful plug-in. HDR Efex Pro is a useful HDR merging/effects tool, and while Sharpener Pro and Dfine appear to be out of date, they can still be useful for output sharpening and noise reduction, respectively. DxO’s most recent addition, Perspective Efex, provides powerful lens and perspective corrections, tilt-shift effects, and advanced wide-angle distortion correction.

Pros

  • Specialized creative effects.
  • Good for adding unique looks to photos.
  • Plugin support for various photo editing software.

Cons

  • Less comprehensive than full photo editors.
  • Limited to creative effects, not general editing.

How to Use Photo Editing Software?

Using photo editing software can be both fun and useful because it lets you improve and change your photos to make beautiful images. Here is a general guide on how to use photo editing software:

Pick Your Program: Choose a photo-editing program that fits your needs and level of expertise. Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom, GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program), Corel PaintShop Pro, and many others are all popular choices. Some are more professional and advanced, while others are easier for people who are just starting out to use.

Bring in Your Pictures: Open the program and drag the photo you want to change into it. Most of the time, you click “File” > “Open” or drag the image into the software’s workspace to do this.

Corrections and Touch-ups: To get rid of spots, wrinkles, and other flaws, use tools like the Healing Brush or Clone Stamp. Red-eye, lens distortion, and chromatic aberration can also be fixed.

The effects and filters: Use filters and effects to give your photo a look that’s all its own. Be careful not to overdo it, because it’s often better to be subtle.

Layers (if there are any): If your software has layers, like Photoshop, you can work without destroying anything. Layers let you change an image without making any changes to the original.

FAQs

Is Lightroom better than Photoshop?

Lightroom is the best tool for managing and editing the thousands of photos you have on your devices. Photoshop is best at giving you more control so you can make bigger changes that will help you make a few pictures look perfect.

What photo editor makes photos look professional?

Adobe Photoshop Camera is one of the best apps for editing photos because it uses artificial intelligence (AI) to add special effects and fix photos before or after you take a picture with your phone’s camera. The filters in Photoshop Camera are called “lenses,” and they can be used to add special effects or change color, lighting, and clarity.

Editorial Staff
Editorial Staffhttps://www.bollyinside.com
The Bollyinside editorial staff is made up of tech experts with more than 10 years of experience Led by Sumit Chauhan. We started in 2014 and now Bollyinside is a leading tech resource, offering everything from product reviews and tech guides to marketing tips. Think of us as your go-to tech encyclopedia!

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