Joe Hindy / Android Authority
This article was updated and checked for accuracy in September 2023. It was originally published in 2014.
In the era of smartphone photography, the power to transform your snapshots into stunning visual masterpieces lies right at your fingertips. Photo editor apps have revolutionized the way we enhance and personalize our images, making professional-level editing accessible to all. From basic touch-ups to intricate creative adjustments, these apps offer an extensive toolkit to unlock your photos’ full potential. Join us as we explore the realm of photo editor apps, uncovering the top choices and tips for achieving captivating visual results.
We’d also like to give an honorable mention to Snapseed (Google Play). It’s very good but doesn’t really get software updates anymore, and that makes it hard to recommend. We’d also like to mention Lensa (Google Play). A lot of folks like the AI image restyling on social media. We’ve talked about Lensa more in-depth if you’re interested.
The best photo editor apps for Android
Price: Free to install
Adobe has released a plethora of editing tools over the last couple of years which includ are some of the best photo editor apps available. Some of the options include Adobe Photoshop Express, Adobe Photoshop Mix, and Adobe Lightroom. Each one has a variety of features to help you do things. You’ll be able to do simple stuff like removing red eye to editing RAW files taken by your smartphone or DSLR camera. Adobe Lightroom especially gets updated rather frequently with new features. The only potential caveat is that some of them require an Adobe Creative Cloud subscription in order to use all of the features. Those who already use Adobe CC should definitely just get these since they’re included with a CC subscription anyway.
Price: Free /Subscription ($1.75/month or $20.99/year)
The airbrush app is a powerful tool for enhancing photos and creating stunning digital art. Its features include customizable brushes for precise edits, skin smoothing and blemish removal for flawless portraits, and filters to add artistic flair. With easy-to-use controls, it offers fine-tuned adjustments like brightness, contrast, and saturation. Additionally, the app provides advanced features like background blur and object removal, making it a versatile choice for both beginners and experienced digital artists. Whether you want to retouch selfies or unleash your creativity, the airbrush app has you covered.
Price: Free trial / Subscription ($11.99/month or $71.99/year)
Bazaart is a fairly popular photo editor on iOS, and the Android version isn’t far behind. The app boasts a bunch of features, including a background eraser tool and a variety of adjustments like saturation, exposure, contrast, tint, and others. Additionally, you get the usual mobile photo editor stuff like filters, text, backgrounds, stickers, and other stuff. The big draw here is the background tool where you can add a different background to an existing photo. The app offers a free trial, but after that, it’s $71.99 per month, making it one of the most expensive options on the list.
InShot Photo Editor Pro
Price: Free / $15.99/ Subscription ($7.99/year)
InShot Photo Editor Pro is a fairly decent editor. This is a new style editor with tons of things like filters, stickers, and other such effects. The app houses all of these effects in a store-style layout, and you can pick and choose the ones you want to download. Of course, some of them are only available on the pro subscription so prepare for that. In any case, it does actually edit some photos. You can do things like retouch photos, cut things out of the image, and it covers the other basics like cropping and such. We think the $7.99 per year subscription is relatively reasonable as long as you use the app consistently. Plus, the developer has a bunch of other photo and video editor apps in the Play Store.
LightX Photo Editor
Price: Free /Subscription ($19.99/year)
LightX is one of the upcoming photo editor apps. It had rousing success on iOS. There are quite a few decent features as well. It has a background changer tool, color splash effects, and a range of slider tools like color balance, levels, and curves. You can even merge photos together. There are also blur features, photo collages, shape manipulation, and stickers. It’s still in beta. That means there are bugs. However, it should eventually be among the top five or so photo editors out there.
Price: Free / Subscription ($9.99/month or $59.99/year) / $199.99 once
Motionleap (formerly Enlight Pixaloop) is a neat photography app with some pretty cool tricks. It turns static photos into GIF-style images. The effect works best with things like water or clouds, but there are plenty of other examples of use as well. Some other features include adding elements that weren’t there before and overlays that can add to the ambiance of a photo. This won’t get the red-eye out or crop your photo. However, the ability to add some extra effects is kind of neat. The only real downside is Motionleap goes for $9.99 per month, and many of its most desirable features require the premium version.
PhotoDirector Photo Editor
Price: Free /Subscription ($5.99/month or $19.99/year)
PhotoDirector is a newer entrant (comparatively speaking) into the photo editing space on Android, and this one is pretty good. It one focuses a lot more on manual enhancements rather than filters, and you have access to HSL sliders, RGB color channels, white balance, and more to properly edit your photos. There are also sliders for tone, brightness, darkness, exposure, and contrast for more in-depth editing. It’s more powerful than most and should be good for those who want something other than filters.
Photo Editor by dev.macgyver
Price: Free / $3.49
Photo Editor by dev.macgyver is a surprisingly decent photo editor. It has the usual simple stuff like crop, flip, etc. However, it also boasts fine color controls, including levels and curves. You also get gamma correction, auto contrast, auto tone, blur, sharpen, and other editing tools as well. It works with JPEG, PNG, GIF, Webp, and PDF. There are also batch options available. It doesn’t have the glitz and glam of some of the more expensive photo editors, but this is right up there with Snapseed in terms of simple, but powerful functionality. Plus, it’s only $3.49 for the pro version and it’s free on Google Play Pass.
Photo Effects Pro
Photo Effects Pro is definitely an editor for those who like to play with filters, effects, stickers, and things like that. It boasts more than 40 filters and effects, as well as the ability to add text, stickers, and frames as well. The editing features are actually pretty basic. However, the developers recently redid the application, and with it came the removal of a few beloved filters and features. Hopefully, the developers add those back in soon.
Photo Lab Picture Editor
Price: Free / Subscription ($7.99/week or $29.99/year)
Photo Lab isn’t among the most popular photo editor apps. The app manages to do quite well, though. It boasts over 640 filters, frames, and effects for you to play with, which makes it among the largest collections available to consumers. With this one, you can create montages, lightly edit photos, and stitch together effects to create some unique photos to share with friends. There is a free version with advertising and watermarks. You can try the free one first before purchasing the pro version.
Price: Free/ Subscription ($2.42/month or $28.99/year)
Umme Aimon Shabbir / Android Authority
YouCam Perfect is a good photo editing and selfie editing app. It allows for real-time beautification, skin smoothing, and numerous creative effects. YouCam Perfect also offers tools to retouch, reshape, and enhance their images. YouCam Perfect also incorporates an AI tool for envisioning yourself in different scenarios. It also enables background removal and collage creation. Whether you are looking to capture the perfect selfie or transform your photos, this app provides a user-friendly platform for enhancing your visual content.
Price: Free / Subscription ($8.99/month or $55.99/year)
PicsArt has been around for a very long time and has accumulated over 250 million downloads to date. Thankfully, the developers have done a decent job updating the app to keep it modern. You’ll find a lot of the usual stuff, including the light editing tools as well as filters, text, stickers, and collages. It boasts over 100 editing tools as well as a community of creative people to share stuff with. You can also use this app to generate animated gifs and even draw stuff on your photos. It’s a strong option with a lot of features. There are also plenty of other photo tools by PicsArt.
Price: Free / Subscription ($1.99/month or $7.99/year)
Pixlr by AutoDesk, also known as Pixlr Express, is a powerful photo editor and one that our readers have recommended to us time and time again. It has one of the best one-touch enhancement tools that we’ve seen, and it also includes a ton of other features and tools that you can use. There are also filters, although it cleverly disguises them as “overlays” and also includes cosmetic editing tools like blemish removers and teeth whiteners. It is one of the better photo editor apps with a little something for everybody.
Price: Free/ Subscription ($14.99/year)
TouchRetouch is one of the more unique photo editor apps. It doesn’t do the usual stuff like smooth your skin or remove redeye. Instead, it removes other stuff from the photo. You can do things like removing unsightly power lines from your shot, small objects that you don’t want there, and in some cases, you can even remove people. The app either works insanely well or not at all. We don’t recommend that you expect miracles, but it does do a fairly decent job most of the time. You can also use it for free with Google Play Pass if you have it.
Price: Free / Subscription ($29.99 per year)
Vimage is a newer photo editor app with some decent features. It’s very similar to the LG V40’s cinematography feature. You can take photos with no moving elements and add moving elements to them. You can do basic editing like brightness, blur, crop, rotate, saturation, and other stuff. Then, you can add any one of a number of pre-made animations to the photo to give it life. During our testing, I added steam to a food item and falling flower petals to a selfie (don’t judge). This creates some unique animated photos that you simply don’t see every day. The app has a couple of subscription options or a single purchase price if you don’t mind the cost.
If we missed any of the best photo editor apps for Android, tell us about them in the comments.