8 Best Free Photo Editing Apps

Edit photos free on your Android or iOS device

These free photo editing apps will help make the pictures you take on your phone or tablet even more amazing than they already are. In fact, you might love them so much that you won't find much of a need for online photo editors or image editing software.

You'll find a ton of features in these apps that include options to adjust colors, change orientation, crop, add effects, frame a photo, add stickers, remove red-eye, add fonts, and so much more.

Whether you use iPhone or Android, you'll be pleased to know that nearly all of these apps are compatible with your device and completely free to download and use. 

Pixlr

Screenshots of the Pixlr Android image editor app
What We Like
  • Super easy to use.

  • Several tools.

  • Lots of overlays to pick from.

  • Also supports collages.

What We Don't Like
  • Always shows an ad when you save.

  • Few font options.

  • Non-smooth zooming.

Pixlr is easy to use and offers 2 million combinations of free effects, overlays, and filters. All the menu options are along the bottom of the app for easy access, and you can always see the before and afters before committing to an edit.

The tools include crop, rotate, double exposure, common adjustments, autofix, auto contract, blur, smooth, sharpen, splash, heal, and red eye removal. For fine-tune control, brushes are included to brighten, darken, pixelate, and doodle. There are also neat effects, loads of overlays, and stylize options like pencil and watercolor. Pixlr supports frames and text as well.

When you're finished editing, you're given the option to save as a custom size or pick from small, medium, or max.

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Snapseed

Screenshot of the Snapseed Android image editor app
What We Like
  • Loaded with professional-level effects.

  • Fun to experiment with nondestructive effects.

  • User-friendly interface.

  • Zero ads.

What We Don't Like
  • Pro-level tools may require a learning curve for beginners.

  • Can't take a new picture through the app; must select images stored on device.

The effects and styles you can add to an image with Google’s Snapseed app are very nice, and applying them is extremely easy with simple finger swipes.

The first menu is for looks. Pick from styles like smooth, morning, or silhouette to instantly apply a preset look. All the other editing tools are in the tools menu.

Over 25 tools are available, like tune image, curves, healing, glamour glow, HDR scape, black and white, retrolux, grainy film, head post, frames, selective, and drama. A text tool (with lots of styles) and frames are just a tap away as well.

Once you've selected a tool, swipe left or right to make it have a smaller or bigger impact on the picture. Vertical swiping toggles the tool's various settings. Having this level of control over a tool's strength makes this image editor stand out from the rest. Just tap-and-hold at any time to compare an edit to the previous one to see how awesome (or not so awesome) it'll look if applied.

You can save edited images with a custom name in any folder, or open them directly from Snapseed into another app.

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BeFunky

Screenshot of the BeFunky Android image editor app
What We Like
  • Great for portrait touch-ups.

  • Photo editor and collage maker.

  • User-friendly and intuitive interface.

What We Don't Like
  • Difficult to align text precisely.

  • Too easy to accidentally back out of edits.

BeFunky is an extremely easy app to use because the buttons are clear and understandable and all the editing tools are categorized into sections that make them easy to find.

You can do lots with this app, including the normal editing tasks but also touch-ups. There are tools to remove red eye, fix blemishes, whiten teeth, iron our wrinkles, change eye color, and apply lipstick and other makeup.

There's also a text tool with layering support and tons of font styles, a handful of frames, and a fun "goodies" menu for adding objects like hearts, stickers, speech bubbles, shapes, emoticons, and more.

Undoing changes is remarkably easy due to the timeline-style undo list. It lets you jump back a few edits at once to easily backtrack on a string of mistakes. This also applies to redos, making it just a tap away to compare the original image with all your edits. Super cool!

You can save to your BeFunky account if you log in. Otherwise, your options include social media or your device.

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piZap

Screenshots of the PiZap free image editor app on Android
What We Like
  • Free filters, stickers, and stock images.

  • Well-suited for making memes.

  • Layer support.

  • Also supports collages.

What We Don't Like
  • Unable to zoom closer.

  • Shows ad after saving.

  • No undo or redo button.

PiZap lets you edit images you have on your device or one from your Facebook account. You can also open stock photos and backgrounds from a built-in gallery.

There are 10 buttons in the menu: adjust, effects, stickers, add pic, meme, crop, text, borders, cut-out, and paint. They let you do things like change saturation and hue, apply textures and filters, add fun stickers like emoji and animals, and crop the canvas to fit your Facebook cover photo.

Since the app supports layers, you can import more than one photo on top of the original, as well as move stickers and other items behind or in front of other objects.

The pro version is free for seven days if you want to remove ads and access more resources like fonts, stock images, filters, stickers, and borders.

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PicsArt

Screenshots of the Picsart Android image editor app
What We Like
  • Superlative functionality includes time lapse, collage, effects, and stickers.

  • Robust social interaction possibilities with other artists.

  • Plenty of creative user controls.

What We Don't Like
  • Not suitable for children under 13 due to some mature content.

With over half a billion installs, PicsArt is clearly one of the more popular free photo editing apps. Likely because it's chock-full of features, some completely unique to the other in this list.

When you begin editing, you can choose from photos on your device or start with a template, background, or stock photo. At any time, you can save the image back to your device with just one button, a great way to save several iterations of the same picture with different edits.

Some of the unique tools here include free crop, dispersion, clone, stretch, and motion. Loads of effects are in the app but only a handful are free, including HDR, noise, film, and dodger.

Beautify is a section of tools meant for adjusting portraits. There's an autofix, a smooth brush, a face fix, and others called blemish fix, skin tone, hair color, detail, eye color, teeth whiten, reshape, and red eye.

The other menus include: sticker, cutout, text, add photo, fit, brushes, border, mask, draw, lens flare, and more.

There's clearly a lot you can do here, and most of it is free. Of course, like most free apps, if you want more options, you'll have to pay. A 7-day free trial is available.

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PicLab

Screenshots of the piclab image editor app for android
What We Like
  • A fun, easy-to-operate app.

  • Great for collages.

  • Shares to social media sites.

What We Don't Like
  • Saves with a watermark and shows lots of ads.

  • Free version lacks advance editing options.

  • In-app purchases required for many features.

  • No redo button.

The PicLab image editing app shows a small watermark at the bottom of the picture when you save it, but if the other apps in this list didn't do it for you, you might like this one. It has an image editor and a collage maker.

The menus include text, stickers, filters, adjust, overlays, and crop. Far fewer than similar apps but they still include nearly everything you'll need from a free app. Over two dozen font types are free and there are several sticker categories to find things like numbers, quotes, and themed stickers regarding flowers, love, summer, fitness, and baby announcements.

Something you don't see in every image editor is overlays. You can instantly add shapes, lighting effects, and textures to the whole image and adjust the opacity for a neat effect. The result always looks like something that took hours to complete even though it's just a tap away.

PicLab Pro removes the watermark, unlocks all the filters, stickers, fonts, and overlays, and provides more features with zero ads. There's often a 3-day trial you can use for free.

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Adobe Photoshop Express

Screenshots of the Adobe Photoshop Express Android image editor
What We Like
  • Full-featured customizable app packed with goodies.

  • No Photoshop experience required.

  • Easy-to-use; delivers top-notch results even for beginners.

What We Don't Like
  • Must log in.

  • No community features.

Adobe Photoshop Express is Adobe's mobile photo editing app. There are several interesting and handy tools to use, zooming is allowed at any time, and you can easily compare your edited image to the original while editing.

The image you want to edit could be a new one that you snap from within the app or it can reside on your device or Creative Cloud account. Editing the picture is super easy through the menus at the bottom. Lots of neat filters are included and you can even blend them.

If you want to crop the picture to make it fit a specific device, this app has several useful presets included, like one for the device you're using, a box, a Facebook ad/image/cover photo, and others for Twitter, LinkedIn, Etsy, YouTube, etc. There are also rotate and transform options like skew.

The corrections you can make include clarity, sharpen, dehaze, and more. Adjusting shadows and highlights is possible with split tone. Blur and vignette toggles are included too.

You can use a blemish remover, red eye remover, and text tool as well, and add stickers and frames.

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VSCO

Screenshots of the VSCO free Android image editor app
What We Like
  • Save your styles as a custom recipe for future applications.

  • Customize the menu with your favorites up front.

  • Robust social community.

What We Don't Like
  • No private setting for photos.

  • Intrusive advertising.

  • Must sign in.

  • Borders aren't free.

VSCO is a much simpler app than most of the others on this list. There are several filters that honestly could be the only edit you apply; they look that good. You can toggle the strength to make it exactly how you want.

This app also has your basic editing tools, so you can change contrast, exposure, tone, etc. Some other adjustments include grain, vignette, clarity, and fade. The skin tone fixer isn't very specific—it's just a single draggable strength-based tool that applies to the whole image—but it works fine.

Something none of the apps in this list can do but that's included for free in VSCO is the ability to save all the edits you've made as a recipe. This makes it super easy to do the exact same thing on other photos without having to remember all the tiny adjustments you applied.

You can pay on a monthly basis to get the complete library of over 200 presets, enable montage and video editing, compete in weekly photo challenges, and access exclusive educational content.

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