Photo Editing Apps blog cover
At Smarter Searches, we love posting images on social media, specifically Instagram. But if you’ve read any of our previous blogs, you know that Instagram is so much more than it seems. If you want to play with the best of them, you have to stay on top of your photo editing skills. We’ve narrowed down our top five photo editing apps to help get you started.


Tired of non-user friendly photo editing apps and over-saturated Instagram filters? Bye, Earlybird. Snapseed is made by Google, so you pretty much already know it’s awesome. Snapseed is free in the app store, and makes editing your photos a “snap.” See what I did there? Upload an image from your camera roll, click the pencil in the bottom right corner and then select tune image to adjust brightness, shadows, highlights, ambiance, saturation and more just by running your finger up and down the image. You can also do selective editing, brush spot repair, sharpening and more. Another cool feature of this app in particular is the ability to hold down on the image to reveal the original version. By the way, when you’re satisfied with your edits, make sure to hit “save a copy” so that your camera will also keep the original. You’re welcome.


Have you ever wondered how people got their full-length selfies on their instagram feeds, instead of having an awkward, square-cropped version? They probably used Squaready. Squaready is free in the app store, and is wonderful for resizing photos for Instagram. Upon opening the app, you can upload images from your camera roll, and then use the in-app editing tool to edit your image. From there, you can crop, enhance, filter, adjust, sharpen, blur, add text and more. Once done, Squaready makes it easy to resize your image – either by adding a border or showing the full image. Boom, no more awkward, square-cropped selfies.

Bonus app: Squaready also has another app built in. I know, right? When you upload an image, you will see a pink and blue app option pop up called Collage. This app allows you to make a collage and edit it in Squaready, rather than an individual image.


VSCOcam is essential if you’re interested in maintaining uniformity amongst your photos. We’ve talked about Instagram themes in previous blog posts, so you already know that it’s all the rage right now. VSCOcam is free on the app store, and is the easiest way to achieve a perfect theme without having to think about it. If you like a filter on VSCOcam, you can simply run each photo through that filter and you have a theme, instantly. Also, if you’re interested in potentially gaining extra likes and followers, use the hashtag #VSCOcam and #VSCO because those hashtags have major followings.

I have your back.


LensLight is basically the universe’s gift to your Instagram feed. LensLight is $2.99 in the app store, but seriously…that’s half of your grande skinny cinnamon dolce latte so get your priorities in order. Check out this picture I took at my friend’s wedding last month. You like the way I caught the sunlight streaming through the trees? Yeah, that’s fake. The sun was already setting, so I just added a sun flare in LensLight and badda-bing! You can also add highlights to your new manicure or earrings, sun rings, cloud shadows, rainbow specs. Basically any kind of light that actually appears in reality, LensLight has. You-my friend-just stepped your instagram game (instagame?) way up.


Afterlight is a unique app because you can also add light leaks to your photos, but whereas LensLight acts as a more “natural” option, this one allows you to add a grainy, vintage feel to your photos. Afterlight is $0.99 in the app store. You can add light leaks and then change the color of them, rotate them, flip them, etc. You can also resize your image and add floral and geometric backgrounds, or make your picture look like a polaroid (a personal favorite of mine). You can also create fusions of multiple filters and save them, as well add transparency to filters.

We hope you try some of these apps out, and we hope you get more Instagram likes and followers than all your friends. Follow Smarter Searches on Instagram for your daily dose of online marketing, smarter, and follow me for more photo editing inspiration.


July 7, 2015

Thank you for sharing such an informative blog. I read about all 5 photo editors. All of them are providing great photo editing features.

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