Instagram is more popular than ever and editing photos to perfection has become fundamental to make your profile stand out.
While any photographer will undoubtedly spend hours researching the best camera model and Fuji lenses, it’s also good to know the high quality mobile apps that are available to edit your photos on the go.
Here are the five of the best photo editing apps we’ve found to help boost your Instagram feed…
Hey, did you know that Hopper HQ has a beautiful image editor built into our Instagram scheduling app? We wrote about this in our Hootsuite Vs. Buffer comparison article since this feature does not exist on either of them.
You can easily edit your photos before posting them on your Instagram right from your computer. That’s right!
First and foremost my personal favourite and go-to app for all of my photography edits, Snapseed. Available on both iOS and Android, Snapseed offers professional level photo editing with an intuitive interface that’s simple to use but doesn’t compromise on functionality.
Featuring dozens of tools to modify and edit your images, with all the standard adjustable settings from brightness to highlights. Snapseed also has advanced brush tools to precisely adjust specific areas of your photographs. Perhaps you want to saturate those red sneakers or sharpen the details in the skyscrapers, Snapseed can do it. You can truly transform your photographs and give them a professional finish. Also available is a wide array of filters, lens blur, HDR and healing settings.
Snapseed offers a versatile photo editing app for mobile, my personal first choice to edit photographs before they’re uploaded to Instagram and best of all it’s free!
A hugely popular photo editing app amongst Instagram users, VSCO is more than just photo editing, it offers a community for photographers to connect and create. Simply searching the Hashtag #VSCO on Instagram will reveal the huge community of photographers and casual users that use VSCO every day, a testament to the app’s popularity.
VSCO houses all the tools you’d expect from a favourable photo editing app; saturation, highlights, temperature and vignette can all be adjusted alongside many other settings. VSCO also offers a built in camera with advanced controls, allowing you to capture the perfect shot, edit and save, all without leaving the app, an A for convenience. Filters are also a huge feature for VSCO, with the option to buy filter packs each with their own distinctive styles and tones, very popular amongst users of the app.
VSCO offers a unique user experience, encompassing the creative energy of photography, a sleek interface and a huge community of photographers to connect and create with. Highly recommended for those wanting evolve their Instagram to the next level.
Plan your social media posts.
Visually plan your posts. Drag and drop everywhere.
Adobe’s suite of photography software has cemented itself overtime as one of the best on the market, and is a staple for many professional photographers. It’s no surprise then to see an Adobe mobile app make the list.
This entry on our list is probably more suited to those who have a real passion for photography and want an editing app that provides advanced editing functionality on the go. Adobe Photoshop Lightroom provides a lightweight adaptation of what you will find on the desktop version, allowing you to truly transform standard mobile images into stunning works of photography. The app comes stacked with tons of tools giving you the ability to change almost every single detail in an image, and of course preset filters are readily available. The app also houses a built in camera, with a pro mode that gives you control over settings such as Shutter Speed, White Balance and ISO. One of the unique features of Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is the Creative Cloud Photography plan, essentially a monthly subscription with Adobe, providing benefits such as; access your media anywhere, sync photo edits across all devices, Photoshop CC and much more.
The Adobe Photoshop Lightroom app is a must have for those who take the art of photography seriously, or even for those who want to learn more about photo editing. Simply playing around with the app for a few hours and you’ll pick up new skills and techniques to up your photography game.
Are you a social creative with Instagram as one of your primary outlets for self-expression? Instasize is the app for you, available on both iOS and Android app stores. A multipurpose photo and video editor, It has all the basic features needed to create a great Instagram post from scratch.
Features include filters and setting sliders for post-processing alongside text and borders for final polishing. It also has a set of beauty tools available to quickly touch up personal portraits and selfies before you upload them.
Plus, regular updates to the platform provide new content themed around seasons, locations, and moods. For users aiming for their ideal aesthetic, this makes it easier to look for the pegs you want. All its basic features are usable whether you’re editing a photo or video, too, making it easy to whip out when you need to create something quickly and efficiently. The convenience makes Instasize a great fit for creatives on the go.
Afterlight (Android, iOS & Windows 10)
The only paid app on our list, Afterlight definitely earns its keep. The quality and simplicity of the app makes it a joy to use and the functionality is also second to none. Afterlight comes built in with all the standard editing tools you’d expect from a high calibre app; Saturation, Contrast, Exposure and even RBG Shadow tones can be adjusted, but thats not all.
Afterlight really shines (pun not intended!) when it comes to filters, the app offers dozens and dozens of filters that offer a different aesthetic appeal than what is found as standard on Instagram, you can stack filters and add a variety of frames. This combined with the fine editing tools and the ability to export photos in high resolution, can really make for beautiful compositions. One of my favourite features on Afterlight is the textured filters, in particular the light leaks. The filters very high quality and used on the right photo, it can make the light flares seem organic. Every filter and effect in Afterlight is fully adjustable giving you complete control over the final production.
If you want your Instagram pictures to stand out from the rest, Afterlight is definitely worth the $0.99 app store price.
Try out these these editing apps and be sure to leave feedback, or perhaps you disagree with our list and have an alternative favourite, comment and let us know!
The Ultimate Instagram Course
Learn how to build a relevant & engaged following. Create better content & leverage Instagram for your business.Register Now
Free for Hopper HQ customers • Updated January 2021