The Best Photo Editing Apps

Image quality has become very important in this social media and selfie generation. It is simply unacceptable to have an Instagram post that doesn’t look good. But how can you add all those fun filters without killing the quality? Just use the right photo-editing app and get ready for the ‘likes’ to roll in!

photoshop Fragment

If you feel like unleashing your inner photo editing guru, give Fragment a try and watch as your normal image is transformed into an artistic, prismatic image. With a range of shapes and effects to choose from, you can go all out and manipulate your photos at will. Some fun features include desaturating, blending, blurring and inverting. You can then proceed to share your image on Facebook and Instagram.

Compatibility: Available on iOS and Android.

Cost: R37.99 on iTunes – R25.10 on Google Play.


For 3D effects, including real-life shadows and reflections, definitely give Matter a try. You get the chance to alter your images by adding 3D objects to them. The app allows you to rotate, enlarge or shrink an image, and add visual elements such as reflection, refraction, opaque or translucent. And, you don’t have to worry about depleting the image quality, as high-resolution images and videos can be used.

Compatibility: Available on iOS.

Cost: R37.99.



Being the original photo filter app, the inventor of square-filtered mobile photos and Apple’s first App of the Year, you can just imagine how amazing the app is overall. With full resolution images as the outcome every time, you also have the option to save, share and order prints of your images, which will be hand delivered to your doorstep! The app also allows for syncing with your Photo Library and/or your iCloud Photo Library.

Compatibility: Available on iOS.

Cost: R37.99; offers in-app purchases.

Adobe Photoshop Express

Want to edit out blemishes or an unwanted object from your photo? Then Adobe Photoshop Express is exactly want you need! With additional features that allow you to change the colour temperature, adjust the contrast, brightness, softness, sharpness, glow, dim and blur, what you can do on the app is endless. As a bonus, the app also comes with preset filters, which are adjustable on a set range, to your preference!

Compatibility: Available on iOS and Android.

Cost: Free.


Instagram is the easiest and simplest way to capture and share treasured moments with others. Also, it’s a fun way of documenting your day and letting your friends know, for instance, what you’re having for lunch. The app also comes with filters and other photo editing tools such as contrast, brightness, vignette and many more. Another thing that comes in handy is if you happen to take a skew photo, you can always straighten it with the app!

Compatibility: Available on iOS and Android.

Cost: Free.



Forget other collage-making apps and try Layout instead. The app is designed by Instagram and works best for collage lovers, especially for those of you who like making collages for your Instagram account. You are not restricted to using the app in connection with Instagram and you can opt to just save the images to your photo library. You can also combine up to nine images in one frame and pick whichever layout suits you best!

Compatibility: Available on iOS and Android.

Cost: Free.


With tools such as vignette, crop, rotate, transform, healing, selective adjust and more, you can edit your images to perfection in a matter of minutes, if not seconds, with Snapseed! The app also comes with filters, because what would a photo editing app be without some filters here and there? Some exciting filters you can look forward to utilising are lens blur, glamour glow (doesn’t that one sound fancy?), and drama, among many others.

Compatibility: Available on iOS and Android.

Cost: Free.


This app has been marked as a standard for mobile photography. Many iPhone and Android users swear by it and, with the polished features it comes with, it’s no wonder it’s so popular among some well-known Instagrammers. You get advanced camera controls, professional grade tools and presets, a collection feature to save and/or publish, and an option to discover other inspiring mobile photographs and the like.

Compatibility: Available on iOS and Android.

Cost: Free.

Color Effects

Improve your images by spicing up or toning down the colour, thanks to Color Effects. With the app, you can create dramatic effects by removing or changing colours. You can select options to grey out the background, leaving only the foreground with colour or the other way around. If you like, you can even change the colour of the sky to pink or green – whatever tickles your fancy! With automatic edge correction included, no messy ends occur.

Compatibility: Available on iOS and Android.

Cost: Free.


We’re all suckers for text on our images every now and then, right? It might seem cheesy for the most part but with the right app, such as Over, you could be the inspiration guru and typography expert in your social circle. The app is not limited to adding text on images purely for social media, you can use it for other purposes, from personalised digital birthday cards and creating logos to watermarks. The possibilities are truly endless!

Compatibility: Available on iOS and Android.

Cost: R79.99 on iTunes – R56.95 on Google Play.

Please note that costs may change over time.

By Cleopatra Shava

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