5 Free Alternatives to Adobe Photoshop

Although Adobe Photoshop remains the gold standard for creating and editing images, it has two constraints that make it an unattractive option for many users: cost and difficulty of use with its many advanced features. If you’re a startup, college student, or blogger and create visuals often, these 5 tools are great free alternatives to Photoshop. Discover Gimp, Paint.NET, Pixlr, Canva and Photopea…

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Photoshop is the best software for those who need to use many advanced features to create professional visuals. However, GIMP has everything a photo editing juggernaut can do. It is first and foremost free and open source to easily create epic thumbnails and high quality logos.,

It’s also friendly for beginners and has a large community sharing tips and tricks to help you be successful with your visuals. GIMP provides many tools and resources to take any image and add your own professional touch, whether you are a web designer, graphic designer, amateur photographer, or blogger for example.

In addition, it can still open and edit PSD files even if it has its own file type (XCF). It’s also relatively small, making it a great choice for computers with low power or little storage space.


Paint.NET is another free photo and image editing software available for download for Windows users. For Mac OS and Linux users, you’ll need to consider an alternative like GIMP instead. The software was originally developed as a free replacement for Microsoft Paint as a senior student project. Since then, the program has been maintained and developed by Rick Brewster, adding additional features such as layers, special effects, etc.

The interface for selecting, creating, and editing digital images is clean, simple, and easy to use, much simpler than Photoshop. Instead, it sticks to the basics, which makes it a lot more intuitive, unlike Photoshop. However, if you want to draw complex drawings, Paint.NET has the power to do what you need if you modify it a bit.

A big advantage of this is that most tools allow you to see what you are doing while you do it, for example with the Gradient Tool and the Line/Curve Tool. In Photoshop, the Gradient Tool does not create a live gradient, but a thin line that represents the location of the gradient. When you release the mouse button, the gradient is drawn, which sometimes forces you to go through and redo the operation several times until you get the desired gradient, which is not the case on Paint. NET.


Pixlr is a browser-based image editing software that is available absolutely free. It has ready-to-use presets for image editing to get beautiful images that mimic hand drawn pencil drawings, watercolor, blur, and more. In just a few clicks.

Designed for editing and creating images/photos, it has several prominent features: collage, cloud photo storage in just a few clicks, a social media image posting program…

Sure, Pixlr doesn’t have all the features of Adobe products, but it can provide more advanced editing options than native Windows or Mac photo editing apps. In addition, it is available on Mac, Windows or Linux using Safari, Edge, Firefox or Chrome. If you’re on a mobile with iOS or Android, you can download native apps. They do not take up much space and memory.

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Canva is an online content creation platform with a focus on design. It’s basically a variant of Photoshop online (not for editing, but specifically for design), ideal for individual creators and small businesses that may not have design skills.

Canva is one of the key tools and resources for creating images for social media, and just about any type of scene, from presentations to business cards to posters, thanks to pre-built templates. Very practical, it automatically saves all your designs. So there’s no need to save them to a drive or restrict them to use on a specific computer.


Photopea is a unique editing app with a very similar interface and feature list to Photoshop. Although it doesn’t have all the features of Adobe’s flagship editor, Photopea isn’t a lightweight editor either. It has enough power and features to save many users the hassle of buying photo editing software. It’s free and open source, with some ads that help with its development, but aren’t intrusive.

On Photopea, you can make global edits such as adjusting the brightness of an image, as well as more specific edits such as selecting an image from a background. It works with raster (images made up of a matrix of pixels) and vectors and supports many file formats.

The impressive thing is that everything is in your browser. Photopea does not require a download. You can either use it in the normal browser interface or ‘install’ it as an app through browsers such as Google Chrome or the Chromium-powered version of Microsoft Edge. But even when it’s “installed”, you don’t need to download anything. The application is in your browser, editing is done on your computer. All your work is stored locally, so nothing is put on servers or the cloud.

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