No matter if you are a professional photographer or just someone who wants to get the most out of their photos, high-quality photo editing software can help you to enhance your images significantly. Our list of the best photo editing software makes it easy for you to pick the right tool for your needs in 2021.

Whether you’re a professional photographer or you’re just taking random shots with your smartphone, the right photo editing software can help you to edit, organize, and optimize your digital images. Sure, professional photographers may look for more advanced features than novice shooters but some tools are equally suitable for both. The following article includes a stunning selection of the best photo editing software for everyone.

Free Photo Editing Software

If you are happy with just some basic editing features for your occasional shots then it doesn’t really make much sense to spend a lot of money on professional software. One of the most comprehensive free tools is without a doubt GIMP. This free open-source photo editor comes with layers, masks, curves, levels, and some other useful features that are otherwise only known from professional software such as Adobe Photoshop. However, some users may look for something that’s more simple with only a handful of easy-to-use features for adjustments. Those we would recommend using online tools such as Canva or Fotor. There are also countless apps specially made for use on smartphones or tablets including Snapseed, PicsArt, Adobe Photoshop Camera, just to name a few.

Photo Editing Software for Everyone: Professionals and Amateur Photographers

The following selection includes image editing software for the highest demands. Some of you may look for a tool that comes with the most features while others are more interested in an easy and fast workflow. With its layered editing options as well as drawing feature, text, or 3D-imaging tools, Adobe Photoshop may offer the most functionality. But to apply certain effects, there are tools like Photoshop Lightroom that can often do this more quickly and easily. Both tools are available as desktop versions and mobile apps. They can also be used in combination and thus offer a seamless and fast workflow. There is also Adobe Photoshop Elements, which is something we recommend for photo hobbyists. It is available for less money and without the need for a subscription.

If you don’t like Adobe’s current subscription system or you are looking for a cheaper alternative, Corel PaintShop Pro should be a good choice. Available for use on PC, they frequently enhance the software with new photo editing features. Luminar from Skylum is another great photo editing software. The popular tool is equipped with an advanced crop interface, great photo search, and the possibility to share your images directly through 500px. This is just a small selection of Luminar’s great features. We really recommend giving it a trial. It’s fun to use.

Applications such as Adobe Photoshop Lightroom or PhotoDirector 365 from Cyberlink are equipped with great features to optimize your workflow. These features significantly reduce the time for importing, organizing, editing, and outputting images from a DSLR. Both tools offer non-destructive editing. This way, the original image files aren’t touched. Instead, all edits you apply are maintained and they appear in images you export from the photo editing software.

One could write incredibly long treatises on this subject. The different programs are just as diverse as the needs of the different users. Professional photographers or retouching studios have different requirements than private users. Some may not need a software or app at all. Instead, they prefer to use online image editing tools. Flickr or Google Photos come with integrated photo editors. As always, we are curious to hear which software you prefer to use. Just send us an email or use the comments section below.

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