Best photo editing software in 2021

The best photo editing software gives you full control over how your images look, with easy to learn and use tools. And it’s not just something for professionals: no matter the quality of your camera or skills, using the best photo editing software can improve your pictures before you share them with others.

Spending a few minutes touching up a photo can mean the difference between a picture that’s looked at once versus one that will be saved and cherished. And if you’re planning to take your images and print them out in a photo book, then you’ll definitely want to use some editing software to make sure they really pop.

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  • What is the best photo editing software?

    After testing the leading photo editing software, Adobe Photoshop Elements 2021 emerged as our top pick for its robust yet accessible editing tools. It’s available for PCs and Macs and has a gentle learning curve for novices, as well as tons of features to make the most of your photos. And, the program grows with you: as you gain experience, you can move out of the beginner mode to gain full control over all its features. 

    Photoshop Elements has an AI that analyzes your images, and can automatically apply effects and create collages. A helpful organizer also lets you label and find photos by keyword, tags (people, places and events), and ratings (1 to 5 stars). 

    New features for the 2021 version include adding motion to static images, moving and resizing objects more easily, and fine-tuning facial features. 

    If you’re a Windows user, you may get even more out of Corel PaintShop Pro, which has more tools and is in some ways even more accessible.

    When it comes to the best free photo editing software, Gimp has all the tools you could want, and works on Mac, Windows, and Linux systems. However, it has a steep learning curve, so we wouldn’t recommend it for novices.  

    The best photo editing software today

    1. Adobe Photoshop Elements 2021

    Best photo editing software overall

    Platform: Windows, MacOS

    Organizer can automatically back up your photo and video catalog
    Face Tilt feature is useful for a huge number of portraits
    Move and Scale feature gives users more control over difficult compositions
    Works with Macs and PCs
    Some new features are hard to locate
    Quote Graphic and Moving Photos effects were less impressive

    While there aren’t a huge number of changes from last year’s version, Adobe Photoshop Elements is our pick for best photo editing software overall for its ease of use, fun creativity and underlying power. While there’s not much new from last year’s version, Adobe’s excellent interface and robust toolset— as well as the fact that Photoshop Elements works on both Macs and PCs—make it the best photo editing software around. 

    As before, three interfaces (Guided Edits, Quick Edits, and Expert Mode) make this program accessible for users of all experience levels. Adobe’s Sense AI can intelligently analyze and tweak your images, saving you a step or two if you’re in a hurry. And, a new subject selection tool makes it easier to create cutouts of individuals and pets, and a Smooth Skin tool is great at getting rid of wrinkles. 

    Read our full .

    2. Corel PaintShop Pro

    Best photo editing software for novices

    Platform: Windows