Get a Free Adobe Photoshop Action to Remove Red Eye

Red Eye Before & After Example
Red Eye Before & After Example (Right click and save for practicing this tutorial).

Download a free red-eye removal action for Adobe Photoshop. This action was created by site reader "Lonely Walker" and contributed for anyone to download and use. Here's what "Lonely Walker" has to say about the action:

"As a freelance sports photographer, I sometimes couldn't get rid of the red eyes in my photographs, shot with speedlight in low light and high speed actions. When looking for the cure of the problem to save the photographs, that otherwise couldn't be published in newspapers, I looked through almost all the plugins offered by different software writers. None of these makes the perfect work. I finally found Sue Chastain's tutorial about how to eliminate the red eye problem in photographs. That sequence of operations works perfect and gives the best result, but it is exceptionally time consuming, and thus not very practical for the not so technical photographers. So, I wrote the Photoshop action 'Remove Red Eye' to automate the process and to make the problem solving as less complicated as possible."

Download Red Eye Removal Action

Installing the Action

  1. Open Photoshop
  2. In the Actions palette, choose command "Load Actions"
  3. Select file "Remove Red Eye.atn"
  4. A new folder, "Remove Red Eye", appears in the Actions palette.
  5. Open two folders, "Default Actions" and "Remove Red Eye"
  6. Drag the Action file "Remove Red Eye" from the "Remove Red Eye" folder into the "Default Actions" folder.
  7. Delete the empty "Remove Red Eye" folder.


  • Shortcut for the Action is Ctrl-F5 (Command-F5 in Mac OS).
  • Works with any version of Adobe Photoshop, either in Windows or in Mac OS.

To Get Rid of Red Eyes (time required - 20 seconds per eye)

  1. Pick up a color from the eye's iris edge, with the eyedropper tool. Be careful to choose an area without the red. (This color becomes the Foreground Color)
  2. Select the whole area of the eye iris (avoid touching the white area of the eyeball and eyelids) either with the Magic Wand, Oval Marquee, Lasso or even with the rectangular Marquee tool.
  3. Hit shortcut Ctrl-F5 (Command-F5 in Mac OS) and the red eye disappears.
  4. If the eye's pupil (or the whole eye) remains abnormally light, use the Burn Tool (twisted hand icon at the left side toolbar) with the appropriate brush size to cure the problem.
  5. Eyes can be processed one by one, or you can make several selections before starting the Action (hitting the shortcut). One eye can be treated several times (if the area wasn't accurately selected, etc).
  6. An Action is meant to work with RGB files (TIFF or JPG), but works with CMYK files, too, though some red color remains into eyes in the last case.

Quick Workflow (time required - 2 seconds per eye)

  1. Open file (Foreground Color is the default black).
  2. Make a selection over the eye iris (try not to hit the white area) with the Rectangular Marquee tool.
  3. Ctrl-F5.

About Lonely Walker: I am working at a printing plant as a pre-press specialist. At the same time, I am a freelance sports photographer, working as a stringer for the Estonian newspapers. Graduated from the New York Institute of Photography in 2004. For the last couple of decades, I have worked as a graphic designer with the biggest daily newspapers of Estonia.