top of page

5 Must-Have Apps to Edit Photos

Updated: Aug 4, 2023

iPhone mockup showing the photo filter tool in the SimplePrints app

Have you ever been hanging out with friends and you both use your phones to snap photos but when your friend’s photos show up on your socials they look amazing and yours… don’t? Even if you and your friend have the same phone, what you might be missing is a good app for photo editing. The ones built into your camera are fine but they won’t give you that showstopping clarity and “Wow!” effect that a specialized app to edit photos could. That's why we’ve compiled the 5 must-have photo editing apps- plus three free computer software programs if you want to get really serious.

Compatible with: iOS, Android, and desktop

Pricing: The app is free but the plans start at $9.99/mo

Benefits: Use your Lightroom license on up to two devices, includes storage (20GB or 1TB), and you can download premium filters made by pro photographers and influencers

Arguably the best app for photo editing is Lightroom. This program is powered by Adobe and is a common tool for pros and amateurs alike. With a few simple moves you can make Lightroom remove background items (and even people) or blur backgrounds to enhance your focal point. You can use their photo filters, improve clarity, and adjust colors. In fact, there is little that Adobe Photoshop Lightroom can’t do. The biggest negative is the subscription fee and the learning curve. (We suggest Youtube videos to help the process, such as this Lightroom Basics Tutorial from Sawyer Hartman)

Compatible with: iOS, Android, and desktop

Pricing: The app is free and they have a free trial, but plans start at $7.99/mo

Benefits: Start creating and subscribe when you want to download, premium plans include unlimited storage, thousands of templates, graphics, and images for both personal and professional use

PicMonkey has been around for a long time and in 2021 it was acquired by Shutterstock (known for their library of stock photos.) Both the apps and the desktop version have many editing options with little-to-no learning curve which makes this one of the easiest apps to edit photos.

Compatible with: iOs, Android, and desktop

Pricing: Free option with premium plans begin at $9.99/mo

Benefits: This is an all-in-one app that tackles photo editing, collages, and graphic design. You can sign in on multiple devices and take your projects with you from one device to the next.

Take on your next photo project with BeFunky - a crisp, clean photo editor that doubles as a graphic design powerhouse. Whether you need your app to make grainy pictures clear or add Vector overlays for fun social media posts, BeFunky has you covered. This easy photo editor is versatile, with a large library of tutorials so you can start editing right away. They even offer batch editing for when you have multiple photos that you want to edit at the same time.

Compatible with: iOs, Android, and desktop

Pricing: Free with premium plans starting at $12.99/mo

Benefits: Full social media integration and post scheduling, a wide range of design templates (even in the free plan), photo editing, photo collages, and graphic design for all types of posts, products, and content creation.

On the surface, BeFunky and Canva could be interchangeable. They both offer graphic design elements and photo editing. But Canva also offers features that are very convenient for businesses, such as creating custom t-shirts and mugs and buying them through Canva to be delivered to you, and you can use their social media scheduling system to post to all your platforms right through Canva. They also offer thousands of graphics and templates that are hard to beat. Canva photo editing is somewhat limited, but for surface level lighting and filters, it gets the job done. For tackling the posting/social media side of things, Canva is the clear winner. But it is coming in near the bottom of our list because, when it comes to the perfect application to edit photos, their options are limited (even with a Pro subscription.)

Honorable Mention: Pixlr

Compatible with: iOs, Android, and Desktop

Pricing: Starts at $1.99/mo for Pixlr Plus and $7.99/mo for Pixlr Premium

Benefits: Use the mobile apps for in-your-pocket story creation or dig a little deeper and use the desktop apps for full editing control.

Pixlr is not one app but rather a collection of useful photo editing apps. Use the mobile apps for one tap photo editing for removing backgrounds and more. You can use the Stories by Pixlr app to specifically create stories that are vibrant and eye-catching. There are also desktop apps, Pixlr X, Pixlr E, Batch Editor and more that can help you tackle any of your photo editing needs. Remove Background for Pixlr is one of the simplest apps for editing photo backgrounds out there. The only negative is that this collection of photo apps instead of an all-in-one system.

Honorable Mention: VSCO

Compatible with: iOs and Android

Pricing: Starting at $30.00/year or $7.99/mo, with a limited free option

Benefits: Fantastic preset filters and editing tools that work for both video and photos.

VSCO is a new(ish) app to edit photos and videos and has become more popular recently. It is touted as an alternative to Instagram because it is both an editor and a social media platform. Many consider the photo editor easy to use, with multiple presets and options for improving clarity and color quality. However, because this app doubles as a social media app, it may be overlooked for the editing tools that it offers. If you are looking for an impressive alternative to Instagram, then this might be for you. It is easy to download your own photos from the app for personal use, but it is also easy for others to download images you post.

Photo Editing Tools for PC

If you are less interested in a photo editing app and more interested in expansive programs that you can use at your desk, there are two free software programs that are definitely worth mentioning.

GIMP is an open source image editor that is comparable with Photoshop. It is incredibly robust in what it can offer its users and if you know how to use it, you can get by with GIMP even in a professional setting. However, there is a steep learning curve for GIMP - partly because it has so many tools and the interface is not very user friendly. Some feel that the program looks cluttered while others struggle to find even the simplest of tools that GIMP has to offer because it is not intuitive. While learning GIMP is a worthwhile endeavor, you will need to carve out time to learn.

Paint.NET was designed as a replacement for Microsoft Paint and it has evolved into an impressive program with many plugins that you can download. The interface is a lot more user friendly than GIMP, but you won’t have as many tools at your disposal.

Now that you know more about your options for the best app to edit photos, you can start adding your own creative flair to your photographs. Once you are happy with your pictures, don’t forget to bring them to life in a personalized photo book or custom wall art! SimplePrints is easy to use. Simply import your photos from social media, Dropbox, Google Photos, and more then start creating a new project right from your phone. You can create stunning canvas prints from the beautiful photos you edited or create one-of-a-kind photo books to keep or to share.


Blogger: Cameya Martin

Cameya Martin is a mother, a wife, a self-identified horse-girl, and a writer. She writes articles for small businesses, memoirs for people, and fiction for herself.


431 views4 comments

Recent Posts

See All


The article "5 Must-Have Apps to Edit Photos" provides a concise and practical guide for enhancing photo editing skills. It outlines a variety of useful mobile applications tailored to different editing needs, catering to both beginners and advanced users. The descriptions are clear and informative, offering insights into each app's features and functionalities. However, to improve its ASO technique, the article could incorporate relevant keywords strategically throughout the content to enhance search visibility and attract a broader audience interested in photo editing apps. Overall, it's a helpful resource for anyone looking to elevate their photo editing game on mobile devices.



안전한 우리카지노 및 바카라사이트를 엄선하여 추천드리고 있습니다. 저희 사이트의 코드에서 게임을 즐기시는 플레이님들에게 신규가입쿠폰 과 추가적인 루징쿠폰을 지급해 드리고 있습니다. 먹튀없는 안전보장 우리카지노계열에서 플레이하시길 바랍니다.


Wow, thank you so much for such a great article, it helped me a lot with the choice of the app. Because I didn't know what to do anymore, the old editor was frankly boring me with its software, and it's hard to find something new and high-quality. For example, the last thing I edited with the old editor was fantasy dragon images, which, to my surprise, were very well edited. I was expecting the editor to mess up with the shades or composition again. But this did not happen, and I can safely send the project to the client and switch to a new application.


Jerimy Walker
Jerimy Walker
Aug 28, 2023

I also advise you to read this list, I think it can help someone. With these applications, you can crop videos, slow down, speed up, merge and combine videos.

bottom of page