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My Favorite Apps for Great Instagram Photos

photo editing apps

Summer is almost here, which means your smartphone camera is about to get a workout thanks to vacations, graduations, and all those pool selfie. While Apple and Samsung have really kicked up their smartphones’ built-in photo capturing in recent years, they still have limitations in terms of photo editing. With Instagram raising the game with all those impossibly perfect pics in your feed, you may be wondering how you can get your smartphone photos to look more professional or stand out.

Luckily, tons of app makers have picked up where smartphone creators left off, creating genius photo editing fixes that you can launch on your camera of choice. Whether you’re just sharing with family or curating an Instagram feed for your brand or business, here are five photo editing apps that take your snaps to the next level, fast.

Photo Editing Apps: Snapseed

For everyday editing: Snapseed

My go-to editing app of choice. In addition to souped-up light and color enhancement tools, Google’s smart (and did I mention, free?) app does some really cool stuff, like create double exposures, select specific areas of the image for editing, and even change someone’s pose in a photo using 3D models. Cray. As most of the other apps on this list cost a few bucks, this is a great free option to start with to test the photo-editing waters.


Photo Editing Apps: Lightroom

For Pro editing results: Adobe Lightroom Mobile

The standout feature here is Lightroom’s raw HDR capability, which basically means you can capture and edit extremely high-quality photos on the go. If you have Adobe Photoshop and a Creative Cloud membership, the app lets you import, edit, and sync your raw files from your camera right onto your phone.

iOS | Android

Photo Editing Apps: VSCO

For gallery-worthy photos: VSCO

You know all those gorgeous, aspirational travel and food blogger photos in your Instagram feed? Chances are, they were edited using VSCO, a smartphone editing suite with tons of aesthetically pleasing filters to choose from. When you use the app, you also have the option of joining the VSCO creative community, which is geared toward photographers and creatives who want to showcase and share their work without the “influencer” aspect of Instagram (a mobile gallery space, if you will).

iOS | Android

Photo Editing Apps: Facetune

For your unfortunate chin pimple: Facetune

While I’m generally not a fan of airbrushing, sometimes you just want the blemish on your face to disappear because it’s ruining a potential family holiday card shot. For those situations, try Facetune, which lets you smooth out skin imperfections and whiten teeth – just don’t go too overboard, or you’ll end up looking like an anime character.

iOS | Android


For paying it forward: InstaRepost

Sharing is caring on social media. For those times when you’d rather repost someone else’s brilliant work, use InstaRepost. Its streamlined interface lets you repost photos and videos from other accounts and gives the original creator credit with just a few taps. I also love that the watermark is clean and unobtrusive, unlike some other reposting apps.

iOS | Android

Are there any other awesome photo apps you love? I’d love to hear about them in the comments.


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