Check out this top 10 list of editing apps and software available for photographers - with a range of free and paid-for options, there's something to suit every budget and every level of experience -

The 10 Best Photography Editing Apps & Software

Whether it’s for social media, for perfecting that Insta post, or you’re starting up in photography and want your images to be the best they can be for your portfolio, editing software is essential. However, with 100s now available, it can be hard to filter out the perfect editing software for you. So I decided I would do a bit of research and choose 10 of the best photography, editing software and apps available right now


Snapseed is a free editing app designed by Google. Where you can choose selective brushes, and have a great option of filters for your photo. Some people have said it has the most significant comparison to photoshop, which is a big compliment when it comes to editing software. It’s super user-friendly, has lots of options for being creative, and best of all, it’s free!


VSCO- pronounced Vis-co- is a photo editing and also social media app. Where you can share your photos, much like Instagram. However, its editing software is what it’s known for best. VSCO provides a rather generous selection of filters and a lot of tools to get a precise edit- a lot of people using it for a ‘film’ style look. (especially with their faux film grain effect) It’s insanely good, and is packed with so many intelligent editing options. Worth checking out – and easy to use on your phone, too

Dark Room

Dark Room is a lot of people’s front runner due to the fact of the design of the app. The importing of photos is more manageable, the process of saving is simple and then add on the detail in which you can edit your photos, it equals a lot of happy people. The uniqueness for Dark Room is its filters – they are more like presets for the image, meaning if you want your filter a certain way, you can adjust it. Pretty cool, right?

Apple Photos

If you’ve got an iPhone in your pocket, then perhaps you don’t even need to look any further! Remember, most phones have built-in editing software, but many of us forget this. And iPhone’s delivery isn’t too shabby! It’s probably perfect for you if you want to have basic edits, jazz up your photo slightly without it being too complicated, and also not costing you money. For some it’s the ideal option.

Adobe Photoshop cc

This is the main desktop editing software and is used by many digital professionals worldwide, due to its long list of professional photography tools – its powerhouse of tools help users edit and enhance their pictures to their vision. There’s also a mobile version (both free and paid) It’s so versatile it’s not even just used for editing photos, it’s used amongst many designers too. However, it comes at a price; it differs depending on what package you buy but looks around starting at £120 for a year, which comes packed with the following tool too….


Very similar to photoshop, and part of the Creative Cloud suite, Lightroom is the photographer’s best friend even more so than Photoshop is. Where Photoshop is likely more about retouching for photographers, Lightroom is all about those global edits – and has a nifty ability to retouch and add gradients and presets too. All of my work starts in Lightroom before I’d even consider taking it into Photoshop, and so far I’ve not found a decent alternative. It’s highly accessible, easy it is to use, and makes editing far more enjoyable. It doesn’t have all of the tools as Photoshop does, but it has map modules, and you can share your images to Facebook or Flickr too with keywords and metadata following them. Again, depending on the package you get, you can grab access to both Lightroom and Photoshop for about £10/$10 per month.

Capture One.

This is a RAW image editor. Similar to photoshop, Capture One has layers and advanced colour editing. Still, it also has the addition of an annotation feature, which is valuable if you like to take notes or you are working in collaboration. There are many different packages you can buy, but the average is around £300

Affinity Photo 1.7

This is a super affordable alternative to Photoshop. And just a one-time fee of c.£50/$50. I bought Affinity a few months back to give it a try against Photoshop and it does a brilliant job. I mainly use it just for quick resizing of images and simple tweaks, but only because I also have Creative Cloud. Affinity is a mighty photo editor with many tools available that are similar to Photoshop; however, some say that it does make it quite technical to use, although I’ve not found that. I’m only using it for simple edits though, so I’d love to hear your thoughts if you use it as a main software – let me know 🙂

Luminar 3/4

Luminar is the new kid and is making a name for itself. It’s pretty much an all in one photo editor, that organizes photos, and edit them too with a wide range of filters and tools. Worth taking a peek at – Luminar 3 is the current version as I write this, but Luminar 4 is due to launch in about 10 days’ time! Prices currently falling between £72-£91 depending on the option. Lots of choices though, and a great one for anyone on a budget or who don’t want to be held by a subscription model.

Phase One Capture One Pro 12

One of the great benefits of this software is the seamless raw processing and pro-grade tethering tools to edit with. Capture One Pro 12 has stunning abilities from every angle. There’s a steeper learning curve I’d say, and also a steeper price (anywhere from c£350-£500 depending on offer), but one for the more experienced photographer to perhaps take a gander at. There is no mobile version but gives you the tools to edit effectively.

That’s it – What’s your fave?

So there’s my top ten! Hopefully, this has made it easier for you to choose an editing software, keep doing what you are doing, and to make those photos pretty!

But maybe you’re using something that’s not on the list? Let me know what you’re using or thinking of switching to in the comments below…

Until next time,

Laura x

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