9 Best Photo Editing Apps

You don’t have to be a photography whiz to produce epic marketing imagery. Check out these nine easy-to-use photo editing apps to boost your small business marketing game.

a photo in mid-edit with part of it the raw, part of it a filter
August 30, 2022
Chloe Mulliner
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Reading time about 11 min

At one point or another, you’ve likely received marketing material with imagery that was just plain amateur. Maybe the photos were lackluster to begin with, or perhaps they were oversaturated. Or worse, maybe the subjects weren’t even properly in focus. When you come across brands with poor imagery, sometimes it’s hard to take them seriously.

On the other hand, there’s a good chance you’ve stumbled across marketing with stellar imagery that actually sold you on the product or service—the kind of images you still remember today. Now that’s exactly the look we’re going for!

As a small business owner, you need your marketing photos to shine. You want them to enhance and strengthen your marketing campaigns to the point that your customers choose your business over your competitors. But just because you want professional-worthy images doesn’t mean you need to become a professional photographer in the process. In fact, all it takes is downloading a photo editing app on your mobile phone to begin producing awe-worth imagery for your SMS messages.

Check out our guide below on the best photo editing apps to help you create photo magic in just a few swipes on your mobile phone.

 

9 Best Photo Editing Apps for Creating Marketing Assets

Whether you’re looking to add images to your Facebook business profile page or boost your MMS marketing campaigns, it’s crucial to include quality images that show off your business, product, or services. But don’t worry, you don’t need a degree in photography to produce amazing images.

So, what is the best photo editing app? Below, we’ve listed nine of the top photo editing apps that make it easier than ever to create eye-catching pictures without any prior experience. The following apps are free (or affordable) and user-friendly to ensure small business owners like yourself can achieve brag-worthy imagery.

#1

Snapseed

Snapseed screenshots on an Iphone

Capability: Android / iOS

Price: Free

Experience level: Intermediate

Snapseed is an advanced free photo editing app that offers professional-grade presets, editing tools, and enhancing capabilities that have received the approval of even the most experienced photographers. This app is celebrated for its effects and adjustments, which you can apply to specific places on the image through control points. It even lets you stack edits, creating layers that won’t compromise the original image. Although it does take some time to master all the ins and outs, once you do, this could very well become your go-to editing app.

Pros:

  • Offers non-destructive editing, which lets you layer edits without overwriting the original image
  • Includes professional-level tools for serious photographers that are still easy enough for beginners to learn
  • Allows you to edit RAW photo files that haven’t been pre-processed by your camera
  • Provides all features for free with no premium level

Cons:

  • Requires a slight learning curve, so it’s better suited for those who can dedicate time to exploring each tool
  • Restricts which social media platforms you can upload your images to
  • Doesn’t automatically save your images and edits, so you must manually save along the way

Does the app integrate with social media apps? Yes, but only with Facebook and Twitter

#2

PicsArt

How to use Picsart app

Capability: Android / iOS

Price: Free, with premium versions available for purchase

Experience level: Intermediate

PicsArt combines the best of both worlds: the artsy features of apps like Instagram with the more professional editing tools of programs like Adobe Lightroom. While this app can be your one-stop shop for all your photo editing needs, it can be tempting to take advantage of all the bells and whistles on one image. Remember, when it comes to editing your images, sometimes less is more.

Pros:

  • Includes an in-app camera that lets you shoot photos with filters already applied
  • Features live effects, text overlays, clip art, borders, and stickers
  • Lets more than one user collaborate on the same image at the same time
  • Offers 22 easy-to-use editing features, such as blemish removal, clone/stamp, change background, and drawing tools

Cons:

  • The free version includes banner ads that can be distracting and get in the way, however, you can pay a fee to remove them
  • Sometimes the app will crash or lag on mobile phones
  • Due to the many tempting editing and enhancing features, sometimes images can come out looking over-edited

Does the app integrate with social media apps? Yes, you can link to Facebook and Instagram

#3

Adobe Photoshop Camera

Adobe camera page

Capability: Android / iOS

Price: Free

Experience level: Intermediate

Photoshop has long reigned as king of desktop photo editing, and now it’s available on your mobile phone. And the good news is that the mobile photo editor app manages to keep up with its predecessor. Perhaps the most notable feature that sets this app apart from the others on this list is its use of AI technology. Called Adobe Sensei, this machine-learning technology provides suggestions to speed up the editing process for you.

Pros:

  • Presents Adobe Sensei AI technology that can automatically adjust and correct your photos before or after you capture them
  • Includes a built-in camera with special filters called lenses
  • Features a “Guided” mode that helps beginners make basic edits
  • Offers downloadable effects and more than 80 filters

Cons:

  • Although the AI feature shows promise, it still has a ways to go
  • Sometimes the app lags, slowing down the editing process
  • Some of the editing tools won’t give you as much control over your images as you might like

Does the app integrate with social media apps? Yes

#4

Adobe Lightroom

Adobe Lightroom Interface

Capability: Android / iOS

Price: Free for limited features, $9.99/month for the full Adobe Creative Cloud subscription

Experience level: Intermediate

If you have experience using Adobe Lightroom or Photoshop on your desktop computer, then you’ll be familiar with many of this app’s features and functions. In fact, it can even sync with your Adobe Lightroom desktop version if you pay for the monthly Adobe subscription. While the free version does provide a fair share of editing tools and presets, the premium version is what really takes it up a notch with cult favorites like the Healing Brush.

Pros:

  • Offers an easy-to-use app for both beginner and advanced photographers—many consider it easier to learn than Photoshop
  • Features its own camera app that lets you take photos and conveniently organize and edit them
  • Includes free presets and basic non-destructive editing tools
  • Provides a wide range of advanced features available through subscription

Cons:

  • Requires you to pay for premium features via the Adobe Creative Cloud subscription, so the free version can be limiting
  • Doesn’t offer a free desktop version
  • Currently doesn't integrate with social media apps. However, you can save to your camera roll and post your photos from there

Does the app integrate with social media apps? No

#5

Instagram

How to edit Instagram photos

Capability: Android / iOS / Windows

Price: Free

Experience level: Beginner

What is the best free photo editing app? Well, Instagram definitely deserves a nod, but if you thought it was just a photo-sharing app, it’s time to see what this app is all about. This social media platform offers a ton of photo editing and enhancing features that let you alter your images without posting them to the platform. That said, if you do plan to post them to the Instagram interface, there’s a seamless transition between editing and posting. What’s more, this free photo editing app is easy to use and always adds new and improved features.

Pros:

  • Includes intuitive features and tools that are ideal for beginners
  • Provides 25 filters (and counting), which are great for those who aren’t familiar with more technical editing tools
  • Offers all of its photo editing tools for free
  • Makes it quick and easy to edit photos and post them on social media

Cons:

  • Only offers basic tools, so it doesn’t provide some of the more advanced features available in other photo editing apps
  • Won’t automatically save your edited photos to your camera roll unless you turn on the “Save Original Photos” setting
  • Designed for mobile devices, so the desktop version can be glitchy

Does the app integrate with social media apps? Yes, it already syncs with Instagram, but it also integrates with Twitter and Facebook

#6

Afterlight

Screenshot of Afterlight Photo Editor

Capability: Android / iOS / Windows

Price: Free for limited features, with various memberships available for as low as $2.99/month

Experience level: Beginner

Afterlight is one of the best photo editing apps for beginners as it’s user-friendly without too many complex or advanced features. However, even experienced photographers use this app to get the most out of their images. Whether you’re looking to go to town enhancing your images or simply want to add a frame or a little texture to a specific photo, Afterlight does it all.

Pros:

  • Provides a great introduction for photographers looking to get more creative and improve their editing skills
  • Offers over 60 easy-to-use photo editing and adjusting tools and more than 130 filters with the paid subscription
  • Features stickers, frames, and text you can overlay on your images
  • Includes a built-in camera feature

Cons:

  • Limits the kinds of tools and features you can access through the free version
  • Doesn’t let you compare your edits with the original image
  • Sometimes experiences glitches that can negatively impact the quality of the image

Does the app integrate with social media apps? Yes, it integrates with Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

#7

VSCO

VSCO user interface on iPhone

Capability: Android / iOS

Price: Free for limited features with the option to upgrade for $19.99/year

Experience level: Beginner

VSCO is interesting in that it’s more than just a photo editor tool as it’s also a photo-sharing app that offers a space for users to upload and share their curated images—similar to Instagram. Aside from its photo-sharing functionality, VSCO is renowned for its variety of filters, presets, and editing tools. Plus, it offers a user-friendly platform that’s easy to get the hang of.

Pros:

  • Easy to use with a small learning curve
  • Includes built-in camera that works in Auto mode
  • Features many filters along with various editing tools that can tint, sharpen, brighten, fade, and more
  • Lets you go back to review your edits in your edit history or compare it to the original file

Cons:

  • Doesn’t offer special effects, text overlay, or border options
  • Free version doesn’t include a video editor
  • Limits the kinds of tools and features you can access through the free version
  • Not available on desktop

Does the app integrate with social media apps? Yes, it integrates with Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

#8

Canva

Canva user interface

Capability: Android / iOS / Desktop

Price: Free, with the option to upgrade to Canva Pro for $199.99/year

Experience level: Beginner

While many use Canva as a graphic design app to produce presentations, slides, and posters, it also serves as a convenient photo editor app. It features basic editing tools with the option to spice up your images with add-ons like filters, animation, and text. If you’re just looking for some light, basic editing tools to help enhance your photos, then Canva is right up your alley.

Pros:

  • Features formats and templates designed for posting images to social media
  • Offers tons of add-on features, such as text, animation, stickers, and filters
  • Provides basic editing tools that let you adjust brightness and contrast
  • Includes templates that help you create brand consistency across all your images and photos

Cons:

  • Some of the more advanced tools, like the Background Remover, are only available with paid plans
  • Because this is a graphic design app first and foremost, some of the templates and libraries may be too much for someone simply looking to edit photos
  • Because this is a graphic design app first and foremost, some of the templates and libraries may be too much for someone simply looking to edit photos

Does the app integrate with social media apps? Yes, it integrates with Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest

#9

Touch Retouch

Touch Retouch screenshots on an Iphone

Capability: Android / iOS

Price: $1.99

Experience level: Beginner

Touch Retouch is basically a magic eraser that lets you remove unwanted elements from your photographs. Whether you’re looking to edit out a person in the background or remove a blemish, this photo editing app can make all those aspects disappear. While this app is amazing at removing objects, it’s a bit of a one-trick pony as it lacks some of the more involved editing tools that other apps on this list offer.

Pros:

  • Provides a beginner-friendly interface with video tutorials
  • Features tools, such as the eraser and lasso, that focus on removing or repairing elements in your images
  • Offers a stamp feature that lets you clone or duplicate objects in your photo
  • Includes an in-app camera

Cons:

  • Focuses solely on object removal
  • Doesn’t offer heavy-editing tools that adjust lighting, contrast, or sharpness
  • Has trouble removing objects from photos with complex backgrounds

Does the app integrate with social media apps? Yes, it integrates with Twitter, Facebook, and Flickr

Edited & Enhanced Images Can up Your Marketing Game

When you’re marketing your small business, you want to put your best foot forward. And a big part of that involves focusing on creating high-quality, professional-looking images that appeal to your customers. These are the images you feature in your social media posts, include in your SMS text messages, and post on your website. After all, the better your images look, the more enticing your brand will look to potential customers.

As you now know, you don’t need any prior photography experience to make your images pop. When you download one—or several—of the photo editing apps above, editing and enhancing your images becomes a cinch.

Once you’ve got your photo game down, it’s time to level up with an SMS platform to ensure you’re covering all your bases. Strong imagery paired with a brilliant marketing strategy can make your small business more competitive than ever. And with an SMS interface like EZ Texting, it’s easy to transport your expertly edited photos into your marketing messages, increasing your chances of catching your customers’ attention. Contact us today to learn more about EZ Texting.

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