What are the best free photo editing apps?
Editing photos is something most of us will do before sharing or posting. Photo editing used to be something only the skilled with the right technology could do, but fortunately, there are some amazing free photo editing apps that bring the power of professional editing to your fingertips.
We’ve put together a list of what we think are the best photo apps for iPhone and Android to help you master the art of mobile photo editing.
VSCO is one of the most popular photo editing apps available. It’s free to use, but to access all the tools, you'll have to pay a subscription fee of $19.99/year (USD) after a 7-day free trial.
The free photo touch up tools available with VSCO are more than enough for the average photographer. You can easily edit the saturation, tone, white balance, grain, borders, and vignette of an image.
So long as you don’t go overboard when editing your photos, you can maintain a natural look while editing. VSCO edited photos look natural and overall, much better. Though if you feel like your edits aren’t what you want them to be, you can make use of the app’s most interesting feature: their social media platform.
The built-in VSCO social platform is a place where creators come together as a community. Users share their photos to inspire each other. Likes and comments are disabled—it’s not a space for making the “best photo” whatever that is, it’s just a place to share. This social platform is partially what makes VSCO the best free photo editing app for a lot of people. You’ll find yourself scrolling through it for hours at a time so it’s handy to have a mobile plan with lots of data.
- Pros: Images look good and don’t look overly edited. Built-in social platform is fun.
- Cons: To access all the content you need to pay, which can be frustrating.
While most image editing apps are designed to help you create the best single image you can, Unfold promises something a little different. Unfold helps you create the most interesting and dynamic stories.
Unfold is most common on Instagram Stories, but it works well for Snapchat Stories and other platforms with Story features too. The app was originally built by an artist trying to find a simple way to showcase his portfolio. He noticed that there were no tools to put together a ‘story’, so he made one.
Unfold lets you create a visual narrative with your images. Adjust and edit the images and videos with the built-in filters and tools before exporting to share on your favourite platform.
With a focus on telling a story, Unfold is most popular with artists looking to showcase their work. Though if you enjoy telling a story in your Story, then you don’t need to be an artist to give Unfold a go. The app is free to use, but the advanced tools and templates come at a premium.
- Pros: Great for creating visually interesting stories and drawing people in
- Cons: May not be worth it if you’re only interested in editing single images. Premium features cost money.