An Alternative to PhotoShop? Free Editing Software Programs

An Alternative to PhotoShop? 7 Free Editing Software Programs

If you’re looking for photo editing software, whether for business or recreation, check out this blog for some of the best free PhotoShop alternatives today!

Photography is a process, and taking photos is only a part of that process. Sometimes, post-process editing can be the difference between a good photo and a fantastic one. For that reason, you should always use photo editing software.

But editing programs can be expensive. Adobe Photoshop, one of the most popular software choices, requires you to pay $20.99 a month. While you can use Photoshop and Illustrator online, browser-based versions often have limited functionality and don’t allow you to perform complex photo editing tasks.

Keep reading for 7 free photo editing software alternatives that can give Photoshop a run for its money.


If you’re wondering what the closest free option to Photoshop is, GIMP may be your answer.

You can use GIMP on MacOS, Windows, or Linux. It comes loaded with advanced editing tools that put it on par with premium software options. Developers continue to add new tools every day.

If you’re coming from a Photoshop background, you’ll find many of the same features present. Levels, curves, and layers, as well as tools such as healing brushes and clone stamp, are all present. 

GIMP is an open-source program, which means that users can modify it and create extensions. There is now a huge amount of plugins to choose from, all of which will further expand the number of things you can do. GIMP also supports Photoshop plugins. 

2. Canva

If you’re looking for a quick yet powerful photo editing tool, consider Canva. Canva runs in your browser and lets you make posters, cards, social media posts, and invitations. 

You can choose to buy a premium version of Canva, but the free home version should be enough for most people. You’ll have access to 8,000 templates, as well as 1GB of storage space for your designs. 

Cavna lacks the features that programs such as GIMP and Photoshop offer, but you’ll find enough options to edit tints, contrast and saturation, brightness, and other areas.

3. Fotor 

Sometimes you want your photos to look great without having to do too much work. Fotor can help you with that.

Fotor is a free editing program that will let you give your photos the quick boost they need to look their best. If you’re looking for specific editing tools, such as a clone brush or a magic wand, you’ll be out of luck. But if you have simple needs, you can play around with colors and find the perfect filter.

Adjust how vibrant or monochromatic your photo looks, then play around with curves and levels. Fotor also lets you throw a bunch of photos in at once to be edited. This lets you edit the shaky vacation photos you took in no time, instead of having to go through each and every one.

4. Paint.NET

Do you remember Microsoft Paint? Although it was basic and simple, it was fun to play around with. Paint.NET is meant to be a bigger and better replacement for it. 

One of the biggest selling points of Paint.NET is its simplicity. It’s quick and easy to use, and if you’re not looking for the fine-tuning features that an app like GIMP offers, it’ll do everything you need it to.

Yet simple doesn’t mean not powerful. You’ll find a host of new tools and features, such as layers, filters, and community-created plugins. 

5. Pixlr X

If you’re familiar with Pixlr Editor, you’ll have an idea as to how great it’s successor, Pixlr X is. 

Developers have upgraded Pixlr X in a variety of ways. For one, it now runs on HTML5, as opposed to on Flash. This means that you can use it on any modern web browser. It also features a stylish design, letting you choose between dark and light modes.

Pixlr X is comprehensive and will allow you to tweak little things. The app supports layers and also lets you make changes to saturation and color, combine more than one image, and apply vignette effects. 

6. Photoscape 

Photoscape is another free photo editing software that may look simple but comes with a myriad of different features. 

On its main menu, you’ll find options for raw photo conversion, GIF animation, photo splitting, and a tool that lets you print graphed, lined, or sheet music paper.

The interface can appear a bit confusing. You may have difficulty finding some Photoshop level tools, but Photoscape doesn’t pretend to be something its not. If you’re a beginner, it should do everything you need it to. 

Photoscape also doesn’t let you make or edit watermarks. Check out this page is you need a quality watermark app.

7. Adobe Photoshop Express

If you want a baby version of Adobe Photoshop, check out Adobe Photoshop Express. It’s a browser-based, slimmed-down version of Photoshop.

Adobe Photoshop Express may not give you all the tools that some of its competitors offer, but it does provide you with what you need. You can also add decorative text in next to no time, and can then upload your photos to Facebook, Dropbox, or Google Photos in a single click.

You’ll also find advanced features and the level of professionalism that people know and expect Adobe to deliver upon. 

Looking for Great Photo Editing Software? Try One of These Programs 

After you take a photo, your work isn’t finished until you edit it. By following this guide, you’ll be able to find free and fantastic photo editing software that’ll take your pictures to the next level. 

Do you have any other suggestions on what the best photo editing software is? Let us know in a comment below!

For more tech-related guides and tips, don’t forget to check out some of our other articles.

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