Best Photo Editing Software for PC 2020, Free & Paid

5.0 Votes: 7

Gone are the days when you had to struggle with lighting, composition, as well as your gear to shoot a perfect picture. Now you can easily turn a lackluster photo into a masterpiece by fixing it in post-production. And for that you'll need some powerful photo editing software. But which one should you choose?


Top 18 photo editing software

Well, there are bad news and good news. The bad news is that the market is oversaturated and looking for the photo editing software might not be the easiest job. But the good news is that we did all the research for you. We have tested and ranked some of the most powerful and effective photo editing software - for every level, ambition, and wallet. This is our rating of 18 best photo editing software for PC.

Features PhotoWorks PhotoWorks Download Photoshop Adobe Photoshop Download Lightroom Adobe Lightroom Download GIMP Download PhotoDirector Download ON1 Photo Download Polarr Download Luminar Download Movavi Photo Editor Download PortraitPro Download PhotoDiva Download Capture One Download Filter Forge Download Picasa Download ACDSee Photo Editor Download Fotor Download FotoFusion Download Paint.NET Download
License Free trial Free trial Free trial Free Free trial Free trial Free Free trial Free trial Free trial Free Free trial Free trial Free Free trial Free trial Free trial Free
Price $27.50 $239.88/ann. $119.88/ann. $0 $99 $99.99 $0 $69 $19.24 $89.90 $0 $180/ann. $149 $0 $59.99 $39.99/ann. $199 $0
Clear Interface
RAW Support through plugin through plugin
Auto Correction
Built-In Effects 150+ numerous numerous few numerous numerous 100+ 60+ numerous few 150+ 40+ numerous few numerous 50+ few few
Color Grading
Tone Mapping
Background Change
Text Options
Final verdict 10 9.8 9.5 9 8.5 8.5 8.5 8.3 8 8 8 7.6 7.5 7.5 7.3 7 6.3 6.3

Top 18 Photo Editing Software for PC

In this list, we have included various software: from industry veterans to newcomers, from generalists to specialized programs, from paid to free, so there'll be a bit of something for everyone. The softwares are ranked from the most powerful and versatile to more modest or niche. So without further ado, take a gander at 18 of the best photo editing apps for computer.

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Score10
PhotoWorks
  • Functionality: .....................................10
  • Interface design: ...............................10
  • Value for money: ...............................10
  • Overall score: ...................................10
PhotoWorks is easy-to-use and affordable software. It boasts an impressive set of top-notch features including, but not limited to various color grading options, easy background change and photo montage tools. PhotoWorks is powered by a content-aware AI that helps you to retouch your portraits and landscapes with intuitive sliders or one-click effects. Basic photo editing tools like color and tone enhancement, cropping, etc. complete the features arsenal.
Pros:
  • Minimalistic interface
  • Support for RAW formats
  • Non-destructive workflow
  • Portrait retouching powered by AI
  • Tons of filters and 3D LUT presets
  • Array of one-click effects
  • Free updates and support
Cons:
  • No Mac version so far
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Score9.8
Adobe Photoshop
  • Functionality: .....................................10
  • Interface design: ...............................10
  • Value for money: .............................9.5
  • Overall score: .................................9.8
This Adobe product is an undisputed giant among image editing software. Photoshop is a sophisticated program for picture editing, multi-layer montage, and graphics design. Full of professional tools too numerous to mention, Photoshop however might not be for everyone, due to its complexity and a heavy price tag.


Pros:
  • Hi-end editing tools
  • Tools for working with masks and layers
  • Smart color enhancement
  • A huge library of filters and brushes
  • 3D design capability
Cons:
  • Too complicated for beginners
  • Requires monthly subscription
  • RAW support through plugins only
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Score9.5
Adobe Lightroom
  • Functionality: .....................................10
  • Interface design: ...............................10
  • Value for money: .................................9
  • Overall score: .................................9.5
Photoshop's little brother, Lightroom primarily focuses on photo editing rather that graphic design. Its intuitive interface and an array of powerful features make the software one of the best photo editors for PC on the market. However this program tends to be a bit slow.


Pros:
  • Slick interface
  • Face detection for smoother retouch
  • An array of filters and color correction presets
  • Camera and lens-based corrections
  • Convenient file manager panel
Cons:
  • Requires monthly subscription
  • Demanding hardware-wise
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Score9
GIMP
  • Functionality: .....................................10
  • Interface design: .................................8
  • Final verdict: .......................................9
GIMP is a free software for photo editing developed for Windows, Mac, and Linux. It is jam-packed with tools, from basic like color enhancement, cropping, noise reduction, to more advanced like curves, filters, tools for working with layers and creating photo montage. Besides, this open-source software allows users to create original artwork.


Pros:
  • Completely free
  • Support of almost any graphic format
  • Expandable through plugins
  • Batch picture enhancement
  • Tools for working with layers
Cons:
  • Tends to be buggy and slow
  • Slightly limited in features for professionals
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Score8.5
PhotoDirector
  • Functionality: .......................................9
  • Interface design: ..................................8
  • Value for money: .................................8
  • Overall score: ..................................8.5
PhotoDirector is an all-in-one program aimed at organizing, enhancing, and editing your pictures. Suitable both for newbies and seasoned users, this software provides an excellent range of photo enhancing features as well as layer-based editing tools.



Pros:
  • User-friendly interface
  • Tools for lens correction
  • Layers support
  • Creation of 360 degree images
Cons:
  • Quite demanding hardware-wise
  • Buggy performance sometimes
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Score8.5
ON1 Photo
  • Functionality: .......................................9
  • Interface design: ..................................8
  • Value for money: .................................8
  • Overall score: ..................................8.5
ON1 Photo is a non-destructive RAW editing software that can also serve as a Photoshop plugin. It's filled to the brim with hi-end editing features, including smart color correction, face retouching tools, lens correction presets, and an endless collection of filters. However, you'll need a powerful PC to enjoy the software's fullest potential.


Pros:
  • Support of extensive number of cameras
  • HDR merging, panorama stitching capabilities
  • Tools for working with layers
  • Non-destructive workflow
Cons:
  • High system requirements
  • Slower than its competitors
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Score8.5
Polarr
  • Functionality: .......................................8
  • Interface design: .................................9
  • Overall score: ..................................8.5
Polarr is a highly intuitive and well-designed picture editor. Combining the most basic and pro level tools, this software is free, albeit with in-app purchases. It's available both as desktop software and as a web-based application.




Pros:
  • Convenient interface
  • A vast collection of filters
  • Many tools for color and lighting adjustment
  • Free version available
Cons:
  • No support for RAW formats
  • Can be buggy at times
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Score8.3
Luminar
  • Functionality: ........................................8
  • Interface design: ..................................9
  • Value for money: .................................8
  • Overall score: .....................................8
A popular picture editor, Luminar is hailed as one of the best photo editing apps for PC. It offers AI-driven tools for fast and intuitive picture editing process. Luminar includes all the basic and more advanced tools for picture editing, as well as an extensive library of effects and filters (LOOKs).



Pros:
  • Customizable workplace
  • Efficient picture organizing system
  • Support of RAW formats
  • Enhancement filters for every photo genre
Cons:
  • High system requirements
  • Limited tools for portraits retouching
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Score8
Movavi Photo Editor
  • Functionality: .......................................8
  • Interface design: .................................8
  • Value for money: .................................8
  • Overall score: .....................................8
Movavi Photo Editor is photo editing software for PC and Mac that offers a wide range of photo editing tools. Mostly suitable for beginners, this picture editor is an easy solution for all your editing needs: color correction, portrait retouch, smart cropping and odd objects removal.



Pros:
  • Easy to use and navigate
  • Support of popular formats
  • Low system requirements
  • A vast library of filters
Cons:
  • Lacks pro-level tools
  • Limited functionality of free trial
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Score8
PortraitPro
  • Functionality: ........................................8
  • Interface design: .................................9
  • Value for money: .................................7
  • Overall score: .....................................8
Portrait Pro is both a stand alone editor and a plugin for Photoshop and Lightroom that primarily focuses on retouching portraits. It uses facial recognition for a fast and efficient retouch. Mostly relying on automatic presets, it allows manual adjustment for a better control of the result.



Pros:
  • Batch processing mode
  • Smart lighting adjustment
  • Face reshaping feature
  • User-friendly and easy to navigate
Cons:
  • Trial version imposes a watermark
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Score8
PhotoDiva
  • Functionality: ........................................8
  • Interface design: ..................................9
  • Overall score: .....................................8
PhotoDiva is an AI-powered portrait editor with a freemium distribution model. It comes with an array of tools to beautify pictures, from blemishes removal to digital makeup application. It uses facial features recognition technology to eliminate manual selection and brushing - all the effects are applied automatically.


Pros:
  • Content-aware AI
  • Top-notch tools for portrait retouching
  • Face Sculpt feature
  • A collection of one-click effects and filters
Cons:
  • Free version has a limited functionality
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Score7.6
Capture One
  • Functionality: ........................................8
  • Interface design: .................................7
  • Value for money: .................................8
  • Overall score: ...................................7.6
Capture One is known for its peerless raw processing and tethering capabilities, yet it also offers a comprehensive set of tools for picture editing and enhancement. Aimed mostly at professional users, the software also offers image capture and organizing features.



Pros:
  • Support of RAW files, great conversion
  • Keyword tagging
  • Support of masks and layers
  • Flawless RAW conversion
Cons:
  • Quite costly
  • Complex interface
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Score7.5
Filter Forge
  • Functionality: ........................................8
  • Interface design: .................................7
  • Value for money: .................................7
  • Overall score: ...................................7.5
This is a powerful tool for transforming your pictures with various filters. The software also allows users to create plugins, filters and textures of their own. Innovative and easy, Filter Forge can be used both as a Photoshop plugin and as solid stand alone software.



Pros:
  • Huge online collection of crowdsourced user-made filters
  • Support of bitmaps of up to 65,000 x 65,000 pixels
  • Separate tabs for simultaneous editing of separate pictures
Cons:
  • Filter rendering is slow
  • One filter per picture application mode
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Score7.5
Picasa
  • Functionality: .......................................7
  • Interface design: .................................7
  • Value for money: ..................................8
  • Overall score: ...................................7.5
Picasa is a free piece of software for viewing, organizing, and editing your pictures. Compatible with PC and Mac, this software provides the most basic editing tools like automatic color and tone correction, cropping, and lighting adjustment. It provides peerless organizing tools for your photo library: organize it by color, face in the pic, or geotag.


Pros:
  • Completely free
  • Intuitive interface
  • Slideshow and collage creation features
  • Geotagging with Google Earth integration
Cons:
  • Lacks features for more advanced editing
  • Retired from development, no support provided
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Score7.5
ACDSee Photo Editor
  • Functionality: ........................................8
  • Interface design: .................................7
  • Value for money: .................................7
  • Overall score: ...................................7.5
ACDSee Photo Editor is a robust piece of software more suitable for seasoned and pro users. Aside from having a comprehensive set of photo editing tools, this programs also offers organizational functions for your image library. It supports RAW and other graphic formats.



Pros:
  • Customizable interface
  • Non-destructive approach
  • Easy and efficient portrait retouch
  • Fast performance
  • Good photo organization and management
Cons:
  • Sub-par chromatic aberration tools
  • Questionable RAW conversion quality
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Score7
Fotor
  • Functionality: .......................................7
  • Interface design: .................................7
  • Value for money: .................................7
  • Overall score: ......................................7
Fotor is a photo editing program that mostly resorts to one-click effects. Easy to use, this software provides a reasonable editing result, and allows for simple design creation. The software supports RAW files, and also offers tools for collage creation.



Pros:
  • Very easy to use
  • A library of collage templates
  • Support of RAW formats
  • Free version available
Cons:
  • Significant RAM consumption
  • Automatic renewal policy when using paid versions
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Score6.3
FotoFusion
  • Functionality: .......................................7
  • Interface design: ..................................6
  • Value for money: .................................6
  • Overall score: ....................................6.3
FotoFusion is software for photo collages, invitations, and other artwork creation. It offers easy-to-navigate interface and collections of elegant embellishments and chic backgrounds. It can also serve as an efficient file organizer.



Pros:
  • Keyword-oriented library search
  • User-friendly interface
  • Support of multi-page projects
  • Automatic collage mode
  • Smart printing layouts
Cons:
  • Limited library of templates
  • Demanding hardware-wise
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Score6.3
Paint.NET
  • Functionality: ........................................6
  • Interface design: ..................................6
  • Value for money: .................................7
  • Overall score: ...................................6.3
Paint.NET is photo software for PC perfect for people with no prior experience in photo editing. It has a clear interface and all of the basic tools a beginner could need - from the Crop tool to the Clone stamp. The software is free.



Pros:
  • Streamlined interface
  • Low system requirements
  • Support of multi-layer editing
  • A wide selection of free plugins
  • A comprehensive range of adjustment tools
Cons:
  • No tools for experienced users
  • Limited brush options

You might have noticed that Photoshop failed to claim the first place, and for a good reason. We consider its complexity coupled with a subscription type of pay (not to mention the money you have to pay) to be the ultimate dealbreaker.

PhotoWorks, however, is a kind of software that manages to find the perfect balance. It is efficient without being complex and suitable for both newbies and seasoned pros. All of this - plus a reasonable price - makes this photo editor a true user-favourite and helps it take our top spot.

If you need more reviews of the most popular photo editing programs, then make sure to check the list compiled by the reputable PCMag.

So that were the best photo editing apps for PC the market has to offer. Some are powerful and versatile, while others strive to be as simple and basic as it gets, so everyone will find a photo editor to fit their needs.