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14 Best Free Photo Editing Apps for iPhone & Android in 2022

Last Updated on Oct. 7, 2022 – by David Morgan
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Best Photo Editing Apps for iPhone & Android

Using the best photo editing app for iPhone and Android can transform your photos, improve the look and feel of your Instagram feed, and impress your friends and family. With so many options available, including paid and free, you may feel lost and frustrated. You know you want the best app, but you don't have time to test out all the editors before choosing your ideal fit.

If you're wondering, "What is the best photo editing app?" you're in the right place. To help end your search, we've compiled and reviewed the top seven free photo editing apps for Android and iPhone.


Top 3 Free Photo Editing Apps Snapshot

PhotoDirector Logo

1. PhotoDirector - Best Free Photo Editor App

PhotoDirector is the best photo editing app in the market. It includes studio-quality AI-powered tools to animate your photos, remove unwanted objects, change backgrounds, and touch up photos.
More Info >

YouCam Perfect Logo

2. YouCam Perfect: Best Free Photo Editor

YouCam Perfect is a selfie camera and photo editor for all your photo editing needs. You can easily apply filters, change photo backgrounds, create photo collages, and remove unwanted objects in just a few clicks. More Info >

Pixlr Logo

3. Pixlr - Best Photo Editor For Filters

Pixlr is a great application to edit photos with a combination of effects, overlays, and filters. You can create photo collages with a variety of presets and backgrounds. More Info >

How To Choose the Best Photo Editing App

Choosing the best app to edit your photos might not be easy with so many options. First, you need to decide what you need the app for. Taking selfies? Editing your foodie pictures or enhancing your scenic shots? Depending on your needs, there are several photo editing apps worth noting for general editing or for more professional needs. As far as features go, most photo editing apps reviewed in our list have both basic editing capabilities and the latest popular features. Remember FaceTune and its unique features for retouching your face? Yeah, that feature can now be found in almost any photo editing app. Most apps in our list have a free version with several features to try and a premium version with extra features that can be unlocked by paying a monthly or annual subscription fee.

In short, our list covers apps for every photo editor out there and we added key feature summaries for each review to make it easier for you to filter them out according to your needs.

How We Test the Best Photo Editing Apps on Our List

First, we consider which photo editing apps are most used for specific categories, and then we have a look at the overall ratings and reviews by the community of users. When testing each app, we look for strengths and weaknesses based on factors such as:

  • Compatibility with different mobile devices
  • Clear and easy-to-use interface
  • Quality and variety of features
  • Frequency of updates
  • Integrated stock content

We would also consider each app’s intended audience when rating it – after all, it’s hard to compare a professional photo editing app like Photoshop to a face editing app like FaceTune.

When You Need a Good Photo Editing App

Good photo editing apps are extremely handy when you’re taking lots of pictures, you have an added desire to either stand out or have more creative control, and you’d like quick and easy solutions and a variety of options to get there.

Most successful social media influencers depend on photo editing of some kind to help differentiate them from other influencers. Using stickers, animation, image overlays, or free photo filters helps them curate their feed, gain followers, and express their individuality. If you’re trying to boost your social media presence, having the best photo editing app is essential.

If you’re putting together photo collages or an album for a specific purpose (for example, a wedding, graduation party, memorial service, or other event), a good photo editing app can do a lot of the work for you and its features can allow your pictures to leave a far more impactful impression.

14 Best Free Photo Editing Apps

1. PhotoDirector - Best Free Photo Editor App

Use the best photo editor app PhotoDirector Mobile to add animated stickers or remove people from pictures

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 10/10

Key Features:

  • Lighting and color tools
  • Filters and effects
  • Sky replacement and light ray tools
  • Photo retouch, red-eye removal, and beauty retouch tools
  • Animation tools and animated overlays
  • AI technology
  • Built-in stock library

PhotoDirector combines complete creative control, a user-friendly interface and a royalty-free stock library provided by Shutterstock and iStock. Whether you've spent years learning the ins and outs of advanced editing techniques or just begun your creative journey, PhotoDirector's professional-quality tools can transform a quick snap into a stunning image.

Along with all the basic editing tools, you can experiment with color grading, making personalized collages, object removal tools, or AI-powered sky replacement for adding flawless sunsets to your images.

Animate your images easily with the best photo editor app PhotoDirector Mobile

You can even animate photos using the guided animation modules. Draw motion lines and create anchor points for a customized animation or add already animated stickers and decor to delight your followers.

Add effects to your photos easily with the best photo editor app PhotoDirector Mobile

Alongside animation, PhotoDirector also makes the most popular Instagram effects easy to apply. While some apps feature advanced techniques that overwhelm or intimidate beginners, PhotoDirector's user-friendly interface and straightforward functions will simplify the process.

No matter if you're editing one photo or hundreds, you can quickly upload, adjust, and create on-the-go with your phone or seamlessly transition to your Chromebook or tablet for edits at home.

2. YouCam Perfect: Best Free Photo Editor

YouCam Perfect app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 10/10

Key Features:

  • AI Object Removal
  • Background changer and sky replacement
  • Face retouch and body editing tools
  • Animated effects & stickers
  • Hundreds of preset filters
  • Aesthetic collages and templates
  • 1-tap background removal

YouCam Perfect is one of the best free photo editors equipped with AI-powered photo editing and beautifying tools. It allows you to edit photos on either iPhone or Android with a wide variety of effects, animations, collages, and more! 

It also supports advanced tools like AI Object Removal that helps you effortlessly remove unwanted objects, change your background in seconds, or get dreamy skies in 1 tap with Sky Replacement. If you want to retouch your face or edit your body shape, YouCam Perfect has various face editing tools and Body Tuner features.

All your editing needs can be fulfilled in one app! Download YouCam Perfect for free today to give it a try!

3. Pixlr - Best Photo Editor For Filters

Pixlr app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 9/10

Key Features:

  • The free version includes some basic editing tools, filters, and overlays
  • The app comes with several collage templates for easy creation
  • Its beginner-friendly interface works well for those with little or no experience with editing software

Pixlr specializes in providing just enough variety for users. You won't ever feel overwhelmed by the available options. Still, you can use intuitive brushes as well as preset effects, overlays, and style filters to transform your photos into black-and-white, film, or sepia tones.

While Pixlr is free to download, the free version of the app has ads and limits your access to editing tools.

Casual users may enjoy the simplicity of the Pixlr app, but anyone who wants access to comprehensive editing tools and advanced effects may find Pixlr lacking in more than one area. Pixlr's Premium subscription, however, does offer access to more editing tools.

4. PicsArt - Best Photo Editor For Filters

PicsArt app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 9/10

Key Features:

  • Good lineup of editing tools for casual photographers
  • Wide variety of stickers, filters, and personalized collages
  • Simple, easy to use interface that allows beginners to edit without a learning curve

PicsArt combines community with a user-friendly editing app for a fun, creative experience without a lot of hassle. While the free app features ads that pop up while editing, even those who are brand new to photo editing can access all the basic tools while enjoying stickers, collage templates, and text functions.

You can also use PicsArt with your camera, applying filters, effects, and overlays to photos before you take them. Quickly crop, resize, flip/rotate, and enhance photos using the PicsArts "Effect" menu, or use the Dispersion tool to create dramatic images with the click of a finger.

If your interest in photography extends to sharing daily moments with your family, then PicsArt's functional tools can help you make minor tweaks and adjustments to your snaps. You can also enjoy trendy filters, colorful text, cloning options, and an eraser tool to remove objects from your photos.

Unlike some other free editing apps, PicsArt even offers a "Motion" effect, allowing you to animate your images.

However, the major disadvantage to the PicsArt lies in its pricey premium subscription and lack of truly advanced editing tools such as sky replacement, light rays, and other features.

5. Snapseed - Best Photo Editor App for Casual Users

Snapseed app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 8/10

Key Features:

  • Over 30 professional-quality editing tools
  • Presets and filters for one-tap editing

If you're searching for a fun, simplistic photo editing app for casual use, Snapseed may not be the best app for you. Featuring a line-up of professional-quality editing tools, options to adjust color and exposure, and selective editing tools to perfect every image, Snapseed's powerful capabilities make it well suited for experienced content creators and photographers in search of a mobile editing interface.

While the editing platform is simple and streamlined, the array of editing tools – such as curves, imagine tuning, selective brushes, and detailed lighting and color scales – may feel overwhelming to beginners who only want to make a few small tweaks.

However, if you've got some experience in editing photos, you may enjoy the variety of options as well as the ability to layer edits and save "Looks" to apply to photos later. You can also use Snapseed's portrait mode to smooth skin, brighten eyes, and create a pro-quality image. You can even use more advanced editing techniques like Bokeh with Snapseed's lens blur tool.

Snapseed also comes with several filters you can customize using the app's 30-plus editing tools. Additionally, the app is totally free with no premium features.

That said, while Snapseed comes with more editing tools and filters than the other apps mentioned in this guide, the learning curve may be intimidating to novice users.

6. Adobe Photoshop Camera - Best Photo Editor For Taking Pictures

Adobe Photoshop Camera app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 8/10

Key Features:

  • The app adds new lenses regularly, with a variety of adjustable options
  • Adobe Sensei tailored masks and filters based on the type of photo
  • Easy, point-and-shoot style of editing works well for inexperienced users

Photoshop Camera uses an AI function, called Adobe Sensei, to apply masks, special effects, and some photo corrections to photos before or after you capture the image. The app's filters – known as "lenses" – offer a wide variety of colors, lighting options, and special effects to transform your photo in a single click.

Some lenses also include animated elements, such as shooting stars or movable smart objects.

Adobe continues to add new lenses to the app, each with several variations that can result in highly stylized photos. That said, while the app allows amateur photographers to get creative with point-and-shoot photographs, the lack of essential editing tools or advanced functions like animation, sky replacement, and the Bokeh effect make it more suited to casual users than serious content creators.

7. Werble - Best Photo Editor For Adding Overlays

Werble app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 7/10

Key Features:

  • Dozens of visual effects templates
  • A solid lineup of movement presets for animation
  • Supports layers for unique animation

Werble's fun visual effects and simplified layout make it a suitable choice for social media content. The animation effects won’t result in professional-quality results, but the app can add a unique touch to your images thanks to various effects packets and animated overlays.

8. Canva - Best Photo Editor With Templates

Canva app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 7/10

Key Features:

  • Variety of templates
  • Text effects
  • Photo filters
  • Base-level photography effects

Canva's primary appeal is its library of versatile, customizable templates. You can sort through Canva's existing templates, choose one that suits your design aesthetic and make personalized adjustments.

The app also provides graphics that you can use in your Instagram story creations. If you'd prefer not to create a story from one of the app's templates, you can access Canva's library of elements to craft a post of your own creation.

While Canva does offer a limited array of photo effects, if you want to produce any professional-level photography edits, you will need to look for a more advanced app. Canva's photo effects are limited to resizing, adjusting color, and overlaying filters onto your photo.

9. FaceTune - Best Selfie App

FaceTune app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 6/10

Key Features:

  • Beginner-friendly
  • Extensive editing features for skin touch-ups
  • Face reshaping and makeup features
  • Several Neon filters and light effects

The first time you open FaceTune, you are asked for your photo editing skill level to ensure you have the best app experience. As the app name already implies, FaceTune’s features are more focused on face editing and involve skin smoothening, face reshaping, or changing hair colors. You can also virtually put on makeup or change your skin color thanks to the Paint tool.

Besides face editing tools, the app also offers tools such as different patterns for clothing you can easily swap with the ones you are wearing in the image. The Backdrop tool lets you easily replace the existing background with one of FaceTune’s backdrop templates such as flowers, butterflies, or sparkles.

The photo editing app is very beginner-friendly as it provides a walk-through for every feature to guide the user through the process. Overall, FaceTune is a good photo editing app for those who love to touch up their selfies.

All features in FaceTune are free to use for the first 7 days; after that, you can upgrade to a subscription or perpetual license.

10. Prisma - Best App to Turn Anything Into a Painting

Prisma app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 5/10

Key Features:

  • 700+ billion painting styles
  • Variety of frames
  • One-click background swap
  • Frequent filter updates

Turning your photo into a painting in Prisma is easy and just a matter of one click.

The painting styles are named after art techniques such as Dallas, Mosaic, or Gothic or after artists such as Thota Vaikuntan or Daryl Feril.

You can also clip the background to automatically apply the style to just the person in the image and leave the original background. After you have applied the desired painting style, you can choose from a variety of frames to put your edited image in the right light.

Furthermore, you can control the effect’s intensity and saturation on the person or do some more touch-ups to the background to match the new image.

One disadvantage of Prisma is that in order to access the photo editing app you have to subscribe to their service first and then manually cancel the 3-day free trial period.

Overall, this photo editing app is very straightforward and easy to use. However, the automatic subscription might not be everyone's favorite, especially when you tend to easily forget about canceling subscriptions.

11. PicCollage - Best Photo Editing App for Collages

PicCollage app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 7/10

Key Features:

  • Tons of collage frames and designs
  • User friendly for easy customization
  • Frequent seasonal releases

PicCollage is our favorite photo editing app that specializes in photo collages. With a very user friendly interface, this app allows you to select which aspect ratio you’d like, then it spits out dozens upon dozens of different grids to use for your photos.

The frames are not just the standard squares and rectangles, either. You can also choose slanted shapes, circles, stars, hearts, or even a honeycomb pattern. The app also gives you lots of freedom of choice when selecting the sizes of each picture in your collage.

There are also frequent template releases of seasonal themes and for life milestones. So whether the Fall season has just begun and you want to celebrate Labor Day, or you just had a baby and want a perfect themed collage, PicCollage is a great photo editing app with customizable frames in which to put your photos.

There is a 7-day free trial with a good selection of themed stickers with the free version, but you need a subscription to unlock all the features, including removing that pesky watermark.

12. BeFunky - Best Photo Editing App for Simple AI-Powered Photo Editing

BeFunky app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 8/10

Key Features:

  • Simple and easy-to-use A.I.-powered editing tools
  • Harness tools at the outset to achieve your specific purpose

BeFunky is a fun photo editing app that keeps photography lighthearted for enthusiasts while still leveraging powerful tools to achieve great results.

As soon as you open the app, you are prompted to select what you’d like to use the app for. We appreciate that BeFunky gets right to the point, asking what you would like to do with the app, rather than having you spend lots of extra time navigating the interface trying to find what you’re looking for.

You can choose from many options, including a background remover, A.I. Portrait Enhancer, Oil Painting or Digital Art creation, and Facebook and Twitter Templates to get the job done.

Something particularly valuable about BeFunky is its powerful A.I. features. The app allows you to leverage A.I. to enhance image appearance, remove backgrounds, and edit faces. However, it is lacking the effects and features that would make it an all-in-one comprehensive photo editing app.

13. Afterlight - Best Photo Editing App for Serious Photographers

AfterLight app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 7/10

Key Features:

  • A no-nonsense minimalist user interface
  • Basic editing tools with powerful results

If you don’t like noisy and cluttered apps, you’ll really like Afterlight.

Afterlight is a no-nonsense photo editing app with a simple and understated user interface that features powerful basic editing tools. It’s extremely easy to do basic edits in a variety of ways - from crops to adjustments to brightness, contrast, vibrance, saturation, and more.

The app has many filters and effects including some particularly aesthetic light effects and a very intuitive double exposure effect feature. You can also add text and stickers easily.

After editing your picture, the app makes it very simple to either share directly to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or Messaging apps or you can opt to save your image to your phone.

A feature we found particularly unique among photo editing apps is Afterlight’s simple undo-redo button to cycle through your edits. This makes experimenting with different adjustments and effects very easy, because you can always go back to previous versions of your edited image.

Although stock media options are conspicuously lacking, this photo editing app is a good choice for serious photographers who want a no-nonsense solution to photo editing, without any more advanced features.

14. piZap - Best Photo Editing App for Memes

piZap app UI

Compatibility: iOS, Android

Overall Rating: 7/10

Key Features:

  • Ideal for social media
  • Unique meme maker
  • Fun, funky, lighthearted approach to photo editing

piZap is a photo editing app with a fun and funky aesthetic that’s optimized for sharing your final product on social media. It makes experimenting with new styles extremely enjoyable. Using the app makes you feel like a kid, which is a great feeling, but its output is still highly aesthetic and professional.

When you open piZap, you immediately can choose to create a new design, allowing you to select options like Instagram or Facebook Post, Facebook Story, YouTube Channel Art, and more. The app is packed with fonts, stickers, and stock media to decorate your final product.

The MEME Maker in piZap is what really stood out to us. It offers many meme templates, images, and animated GIFs ready to be customized and shared to a variety of social media platforms.

With frequent updates, templates, and tutorials released, this photo editing app is perfect for creating viral posts, memes, and stories. It also links seamlessly with a number of social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

It’s a great photo editor for any avid social media user, but the app lacks complete creative control and some more advanced photo editing tools if you want to take photo editing more seriously.

Download PhotoDirector - The Best Photo Editing App for Free

 Use the best photo editor app PhotoDirector to easily replace or change the sky in your photo

A few years ago, you most likely snapped a selfie using your cell phone, applied an Instagram filter, and shared it with the world. Now, many are jumping between editing apps and even applying additional touch-ups or tweaks from desktop photo editing software before sharing an image online.

Luckily, you can capture your vision and achieve stunning results using one of the top five best photo editing apps for iPhone and Android. While each of our top seven picks has its advantages, only PhotoDirector combines ease of use and all the comprehensive editing tools you need in a single photo editing app.

Even beginners can create shareable photos in minutes using PhotoDirector. Apply filters, combine images into a collage using the highly customizable templates, or brighten your photos with light rays and animated sparkle. PhotoDirector's AI editing tools include complete sky replacement, allowing you to adjust or remove the sky in your original image and seamlessly integrate a lovely morning or evening display. With its photo animation tools, you can add motion to your photo in seconds.

Edit, animate, and customize your photos to inspire your followers, and impress your friends, and family.

Get started for free today by downloading PhotoDirector.

Photo Editing App FAQ

1. What are the benefits of mobile photo editing?

There are two big benefits of mobile photo editing:

  1. You can do it anywhere and anytime you have your phone, which for most of us is everywhere and all the time.
  2. Since most of us are just using our camera phones to take pictures, you don't have to worry about transferring your photos to another device.

2. What features should I look for in a photo editing app?

  1. User-friendly
  2. Color correction and filters
  3. AI-powered tools
  4. Content-aware editing
  5. Photo animation
  6. Beauty retouching
  7. Color effects
  8. Light effects
  9. Sky replacement
  10. Overlay abilities

3. What is the best free Photoshop alternative?

Check out our article Best Alternatives to Photoshop article for a full overview of our top 5.

  1. PhotoDirector 365
  2. Paintshop Pro
  3. DxOPhotoLab
  4. Rebelle
  5. Pixelmator

4. What is the best free photo editing app for Windows?

Check out our article 5 Best Free Photo Editing Software for Windows PC in 2022 for a full overview of our top 5.

  1. PhotoDirector Essential
  2. GIMP Photo Editor
  3. Movavi Photo Editor
  4. BeFunky
  5. Pixlr

5. What is the best free photo editing app for Mac?

Check out our article Best Free Photo Editor for Mac for a full overview of our top 5.

  1. PhotoDirector Essential
  2. GIMP Photo Editor
  3. Fotor Photo Editor
  4. Pixelmator
  5. Photoscape X

6. Should I pay for a photo editing app?

This is dependent on your needs and what kind of edits you want to make. If you're making simple adjustments like cropping, rotating or flipping a basic free editor should be fine.

If you want to add photo effects you will benefit from paying for a quality photo editor. Some free editors offer advanced features like PhotoDirector but it is an exception to the rule. Most are usually clunky and don't provide the best results.

There is also a paid version of PhotoDirector that includes a 4,000,000+ stock library and lots of extra creative assets.

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