Do you use filters on your photos before printing or sharing them on social media? Filters are an easy way to edit your photos without spending a lot of time learning complicated editing software. They’re also a great way to give your photos a cohesive look or style, which is useful for creating a theme on your Instagram feed. Photo filter apps often include a variety of out-of-the-box filters for one-tap editing of your favorite shots.
The 7 best filter apps for iPhone
There are dozens of photo filter apps available for iPhone, but they are not all created equal. The following 7 filter apps are easy to use, fun to experiment with, and free or available at low cost. Here are our favorite filter apps for creating quick and stylish edits on all of our photos:
- VSCO – the most popular filter app right now
- Retrica: film-like filters for retro photographers
- Snapseed – a feature-packed filter app for photographers
- A color story: create custom filters for your photos
- PS Express – Color and Nature-Based Filter Pops
- Instagram: the first filter application in social networks
- IPhone Photos – The Native iPhone Photo Filter App
1. VSCO – the most popular filter app right now
The premium version of the VSCO app includes over 200 filters, called in-app presets. Many filters are based on the look of old movies, but there are also dedicated filters for landscapes, selfies, city scenes, and more.
VSCO filters allow a lot of flexibility and new presets are added all the time, making them perfect for fashion photographers, Instagram influencers, and small businesses.
2. Retrica: film-like filters for retro photographers
Do you want to turn your iPhone into a retro movie-looking camera? Look no further than Retrica, an application that allows you to apply retro filters before taking a photo. More than 190 filters can be applied in real time, which means you can take photos without any additional editing.
Exclusive filters are released periodically for premium members, and Retrica also includes fun editing tools that you can use before and after taking a photo.
3. Snapseed – a feature-packed filter app for photographers
Snapseed is one of the most comprehensive free photo editing apps, with a great combination of filters that can be endlessly adjusted and combined. Unique filter categories include black and white options along with vintage, grunge, film grainy, Retrolux, and Glamor Glow. The non-destructive editing feature means that you can change any aspect of your editing without having to start over.
4. A color story: create custom filters for your photos.
A Color Story includes over 100 infinitely adjustable filters, plus the ability to create custom filters for your own unique look that can be saved for future use. Motion effects include lens flare, bokeh, light leak, glow, and texture, and you can change every aspect of the effects to fit your photo perfectly.
5. PS Express: color and nature-based filter pops
Adobe Photoshop Express is a fast and easy photo editor with a variety of cool filters that can’t be replicated anywhere else. The app is free to download, but premium features require a subscription fee. Our favorite filters let you add pops of color to otherwise black and white photos, create black and white movie photo replicas, and create HDR looks with just one tap.
6. Instagram: the first filter app ever
We can’t talk about photo filter apps without mentioning the one that started it all. Instagram started in 2010 as a way for users to upload photos, add pre-designed filters, and share them with followers, and has since grown into one of the largest social media platforms in the world.
While Instagram doesn’t offer dozens and dozens of filters like many other photo apps, the filters it does offer are highly appreciated by its users. Almost all Instagram users have a favorite filter, but the most used filter, according to Shutterstock, is Clarendon.
7. iPhone Photos: iPhone’s native photo filter app
For casual photographers and people who don’t want to download a dedicated app just to add filters on their selfies, we recommend using the Photos app. The available editing tools and filters are great for casual sharing, and can’t be uploaded or downloaded because your photo library is already built in. There are currently nine filters available in the Photos app, providing a variety of color and black-and-white styles.
Once you discover your favorite photo filter app, you will find that it is fun and addictive to use. You’ll want to start editing all the photos you’ve taken so that you can add your favorite filters. Don’t say we didn’t warn you!