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  • Writer's pictureRachel Z

Best Photo Editing Apps in 2021

Updated: Oct 22, 2021

Having an easy way to edit photos right from your phone is always a convenient and amazing way to not only process photos quickly, but also on the go. With smartphone technology getting better with each new phone generation, now is the best time to really find those perfect apps for all your photo editing needs. So with that in mind, it’s Rachel with Rachel Z Photography, your San Francisco, California photo guide, looking at the best photo editing apps in 2021.

What is a Photo Editing App?

A photo editing app is used to enhance or manipulate digital photos. The user can use photo effects, resize the image, adjust hue or saturation, create collages, and many more.

Some people use photo editing apps for recreation, but for business owners, it’s an excellent strategy for e-commerce marketing. In this era, where all business establishments resort to online selling on social media platforms, a visual display of the products sold must undergo photo editing.

Photo editing apps became popular because of its uses and advantages, such as:

  • Touch up images using photo filters and texts to capture the attention of online audiences.

  • Timesaving and cost-efficient: It’s timesaving, simply capturing the photo, clicking to edit, and uploading. It’s cost efficient because there’s no need to hire a professional photographer. Some photo editing apps require a minimal subscription fee, and some even have free subscriptions.

  • For businesses, it can: improve brand building, increase sales, build credibility and respect, be an easy social media marketing strategy, and more.

  • Most photo editing apps are user-friendly, have tutorials, and have uncomplicated effects that do the trick.

  • Photo editing apps are used for different photography: food, travel, portrait, landscape, and more.

Top Photo Editing Apps in 2021:


Snapseed is one of the best photo editing apps for both professional and amateur photographers. The app was developed by Google and mimicked Adobe Photoshop features.

It has classic tools like straightening, cropping, frames, vignettes, and adding texts. Using Snapseed, the user can directly edit raw photos with similar functions and features of Photoshop. For IOS phones, it is just not for photo editing, and it can also capture images.

Snapseed allows editing the depth of field where the background can be adjusted to blurry while the object of the photo is the primary focus. This is a feature of professional SLR cameras and desktop photo editing software. Snapseed could incorporate this into their app.

The “selective adjust” tool also enables the user to edit a specific photo area to adjust the contrast, saturation, or brightness. If ever you’ve seen a photo of a cat in black and white, and the ball of red yarn only has the color, that’s the selective change feature.

It has some of the popular features like HDR, perspective, healing brush structure, and more. The feature of Snapseed that stands out among other photo editing apps is its ability to save your presets or style.

Have you seen those social media accounts that have their “signature look” on their photo feed? That’s because their photo style has been saved previously and can be easily used the next time they edit their photos.


VSCO combines photo capturing, editing tools, and, get this, an online community. It’s just like Instagram or Flickr except that the developer of VSCO is a professional photography software, Film. It’s nowhere near Instagram with social interactions and the number of users, but it’s an appealing app to edit those Instagrammable shots.

VSCO is all about the filters that make your shots look like it was taken from an analog camera. The easy-adjust, subtle, soft filters look classy compared to the heavy and obvious filters of Instagram.

The VSCO photo editing app allows users to follow “creators” for inspiration or be part of a unique community. The installation, sign-up process, and initial set-up of the user profile are straightforward and won’t take that long.

Like Snapseed, you can work on existing photos on your camera roll, or capture moments using the app. When taking photos using the app, the user can choose the focus and adjust exposure points for the on-screen targets. There are basic photo adjustments, like contrast, exposure, skin tones, borders, vignettes, and color saturation. The latest VSCO version even has basic video editing features.

For people who take photo editing seriously, there’s the Tone button where the shadow and highlight adjustments are found. It helps the object of the photo stand out and look professional.


Since taking photos of food is now somewhat mandatory, it makes sense to have an app. May it be a restaurant or homemade foods, for marketing or just feeling like posting your “everyday eats,” complete that mouth-watering shot with the Foodie photo editing app.

The Foodie app is like Instagram for its filters, except it was designed specifically for food photography. The app has the basic photo editing tools plus 30+ filters for different vibes, and whichever mood you see fit to add spice to that perfect meal. Users can even shoot videos with live filters and high-quality output.

It’s easy to use and can be shared easily with social media platforms. But do not let the name fool you. It’s also not bad for editing selfies and other photos.

About Rachel Z Photography

I’m a 29-year-old San Francisco-based photographer, activist, tattoo enthusiast, and guardian of 2 lovely rescued birds. I adore doing portrait photography for others, whether that’s indoors or outdoors, covered in flowers and nature or covered in fake blood. My goal with my photography is to empower you by taking the essence of who you are and turning it into works of art. I want to hear what YOUR ideas are and help make them into a reality. I want you to feel powerful. I want you to feel beautiful. I want you to feel confident, because we all deserve that.

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