6 Best Free Photo / Image Editing Apps For iOS (iPhone & iPad)

iOS Photo Editing Apps
iOS Photo Editing Apps

Most of us take plenty of pictures using our iPhone cameras and we want them to look as beautiful as possible, hence we use various photo editor apps that can enhance our pictures. There are hundreds upon hundreds of different photo editing apps for iOS in the App Store and all of them possess unique features. Most of these photo editors are made suitable for beginners as well as professionals.

Unfortunately, it is not easy to pick the best ones from the App Store either, as the various photo editing apps are highly subjective. So we decided to test them out for you and here are the 6 best photo editing apps for iPhone and iPad based on their top features and easy-to-use functionality. The list contains apps that range from one-touch filter apps to advanced creative editing.

1. Snapseed

Interestingly, the first app on our list is from Apple’s main competitor in mobile space. Snapseed is a photo editing tool made by the search giant, Google and as you would expect, it is completely free without any hidden in-app purchases. It is one of the most popular photo editing apps for the iPhone, and for good reason. It is incredibly easy to use, but at the same time, it offers a powerful collection of tools.

This app excels in all basic photo processing techniques, including exposure, color, sharpening, cropping, and straightening. It also offers advanced editing features such as selective adjustments and a healing tool for removing unwanted objects.

Snapseed offers much more control when it comes to the number of available tools that users can take advantage of. Some of the unique tools that are available on Snapseed includes Healing, Vignette, Curves, Selective, Brush, and Transform.

In addition to these, there is a great selection of creative filters that you can use to convert your photos to black and white, apply textures, add blur effects, and otherwise enhance the mood of your images. Users who prefer much more flexibility in editing photos might prefer this application above the rest.

If you are new to iPhone photography, this really should be the first photo editor app you download and learn.


VSCO (pronounced visco) is popular among professional photographers due to its stylish editing abilities and advanced effects that users can access with in-app purchases. While this app also functions as a camera app and photo sharing platform, it is the rich collection of filters and user-friendly editing tools that really make it stand out.

Unlike other apps where the filters can be garish and overpowering, VSCO’s presets are designed to emulate classic and modern analog films. Many of the filters feature a soft, slightly retro, faded look that will subtly enhance any pictures you take. The quick editing tools include white balance, shadows, highlights, and exposure etc.

Apart from the editing prowess, the user interface of the camera is quite sleek and simple. It also features its very own social media platform, so you can show off your breathtaking pictures to fellow VSCO users.

VSCO is FREE on the App Store and comes with a basic collection of presets to get you started. You can then download additional preset bundles if you wish — some are free while others must be purchased.

3. Prisma

You have probably heard of Prisma by now. It uses artificial intelligence in the form of a mix of neural networks and cloud-based machine learning to turn your photos into approximations of the work of artists like Munch or Picasso. Sure, other apps have made similar claims — but the results here really are as impressive as you would hope.

Actually, Prisma was not designed for photo editing purpose but users are enjoying its features impressively for developing customized images. Here you can access a range of graphic artworks, stylish filters and clever algorithms that can execute every job amazingly. While it is not a true editing platform, it is one of the best options if you want to develop artistic style images.

4. Adobe Lightroom

This editor can easily work on iOS as well as Android platform and is available for free. It is well known as advanced mobile editing tool that offers all unique features like exposure, color, white balance, color, gradient, clarity settings.

Recently, Adobe has added a new mode, Authentic HDR, which rivals competing high-dynamic-range methods. According to the company, Authentic HDR will “automatically analyzes a scene to determine the appropriate spread of exposure values over three shots, then automatically aligns, de-ghosts, and tone maps the image, creating a 32-bit floating point DNG file”.

5. Photoshop Express

Adobe is well popular among editors due to its classic interface and advanced editing tools. The iOS app is a stripped-down version of the desktop version with much lesser features aimed at performing better on a touchscreen device. However, do not underestimate the Adobe Photoshop Express app, because it is still way better than many of the photo editing apps that are currently available apps for iPhones and iPads.

It keeps the users engaged with plenty of tools like noise reduction, blemish removal, defog and several others for in-depth photo editing that might consume some time rather than quick edits with just filters. Users have complete control over what they do on the picture. Plus, the app lets you create studio-caliber collages with just a few taps.

Other features of the app include RAW file support, TIFF support, an ability to watermark images, upload photos to cloud storage services, and more. There are so many basic correction tools along with special border effects, localized adjustments, Photoshop touch ability and excellent styles.

Adobe Photoshop Express can be downloaded and used for free. However, in order to access certain features within the app, you will have to make in-app purchases.

6. PicsArt Photo Studio

“PicsArt Photo Studio”, with over 300 million users, is one of the most admirable photo editor apps for iOS. There are tons of filters to choose from and give your awesome photos the desired look. Select from a number of collage layouts to bring plenty of memories into one frame.

There are a number of high-quality photo editing tools to let you design your photo just the way you want. Use different stickers and emojis to add some fun to the image. The AI-powered magic effects along with plenty of magnificent tools make this app stand out.

A few last words

Well, it was definitely not an easy task to shorten this list to 6 from a huge list of photo editing apps that are currently available on the App Store. That being said, these are some of the very best apps that you guys can make use of to enhance your breathtaking stills on your iPhone.

While each app offers unique features that may not be available in others, it is always better to have multiple applications installed, depending on the kind of editing that you do.

If you think there is another app worth mention do comment and let us know! We would be more than happy to include it on our list. If you liked this article do hit the like button and share it with your friends

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Haridas Gowra

Loves space, gadgets, comics and believes PC is superior to consoles.

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