10+ Best Tools To Optimize & Edit Your Instagram Pictures

Voight Thornton
9 min readOct 26, 2017

We’ve all been there — snapping a photo that is worthy enough to go on the Insta, yet still thinking that something can be done to perfect it. The truth is, many of the Instagram pictures out there look good just because they are edited and optimized with solid apps.

From bloggers to travelers, people are using the same phones and cameras — yet some Instagram pictures look like they are from another galaxy, right?

The answer is simple — in order to have a great feed, you need to learn how to edit your Instagram pictures. And that is why today, we are listing the best Instagram tools available on the market.

Let’s Edit Your Instagram Pictures

1. Snapseed

There is a reason why Snapseed is first on our list — and the reason for that is apparent. Snapseed is one of the most popular tools to edit Instagram pictures and optimize them accordingly. However, the fun doesn’t end there.

The great thing about this tool is that it lets you perfect your Instagram pictures no matter how experienced you are with it. Plus, there is a handful of nifty features such as redeye reduction, tilt-shift and textured filters and straightening.

Snapseed makes Instagram’s built-in filters seem like too simple and is the perfect addition you need. The editing is also easier than ever — all you have to do is scroll up and down to apply the edits and scroll between them.

Tip: The best way to use Snapseed is to make some elements of your photo pop, specifically when you are showcasing products or logos in real-life settings.

2. Photo Editor by Aviary

This excellent photo editor by Aviary lets you edit your Instagram pictures and automatically enhance them every time you render a gorgeous photo of yourself or a great landscape.

There is also a large variety of effects and color correctors that can fine-tune your Insta photos and prepare them for the ‘Share’ button.

You can crop, resize, rotate, focus, splash or even create memes on Instagram with this amazing tool. And for the ones that need even more, the Photo Editor by Aviary offers a collection of different stickers, frames, overlays and more items.

Tip: Aviary lets you directly share your photos with your friends and family. After you are done with editing, all you need to do is tap ‘Apply’ and then ‘Done’. Then, you can share your photos via email, Google+, Google Drive, Google Hangouts and Google Keep.

3. VSCO Cam

If you are looking for an app that has more filters to edit your Instagram pictures with, VSCO Cam is undoubtedly the one. What is great about VSCO is that it functions like a stand-alone social network itself. You can share your edited photos there or get inspired by following other users.

Anyways, the great things about VSCO Cam start with its cool interface, which features a layout for editing and putting effects on your photos. There are four main icons you can choose from, and the brush icon is where most of the filters and brightness/contrast/fade features are.

To sum it up, VSCO Cam is great for taking and editing Instagram pictures with tools that take advantage of every mobile screen and an elegant minimalistic interface that inspires you to be more creative.

Tip: Did you know that you can increase or decrease the effect of a filter on VSCO Cam — by simply tapping on the filter itself?

4. Flickr

Flickr is another tool that belongs to the ‘old school’ category of editing Instagram pictures. In fact, the app was once a rival to Instagram and Pinterest in the battle of exposure and lost a major opportunity to become the go-to medium for social sharing and viewing images online.

However, what Flickr retained are the amazing photo features that let you customize images and fix underexposed photos automatically, remove red-eye or apply a lot of special effects to your photos. The app also got an overhaul and offers tons of free space, which can indeed be used to store your photos there (or even the Instagram pics that did not make it to your feed).

Tip: Flickr has a browser version as well which works like a breeze, especially when its drag-and-drop upload page.

5. Afterlight by Adobe

Afterlight comes at a price of $0.99. However, for many, that price is worth paying — according to the app’s popularity in the iOS marketplace. At first glance, Afterlight offers you:

  • 15 adjustment tools to enhance and perfect your Instagram pictures;
  • 59 filters including original ones, guest ones (by Instagram users) and a Seasons filter pack;
  • 66 textures which include a range of real and natural light leaks, perfect to edit your Instagram pictures with;
  • Cropping and transforming tools with 15 different presets;
  • 77 different and adjustable frames

From the above mentioned, it is clear why the app is not available for free. The app’s easy interface a vintage filters are the favorites of many users.

Tip: Afterlight is great for recreating your photos with some vintage, old-time effects.

6. Slow Shutter Cam

Have you ever seen the Instagram photos that feature glowing letters and shapes floating in the air, creating a magical piece?

Well, guess what…It takes a couple of minutes to bring the same effect to your photos. All you need to do is install Slow Shutter Cam and edit your Instagram pictures in all the ways you want. You can grab a couple of glow sticks and take long-exposure images with your mobile device, and the results are always wonderful.

This app lets you make use of long-exposure photography (or slow shutter photography), which is a shooting method that involves taking photos using a slow shutter speed. That is why the movements in the scene are captured as motion blur or a trail of light.

Tip: Want a blurry river or a shape of light describing the traffic on the streets? Just open Slow Shutter Cam and start shooting — but make sure that you hold your camera still.

7. Bokehful

Have you heard about ‘bokeh’ effects? If yes, this is the app you need to edit your Instagram photos with bokeh effects.

If yes, this is the app you need to edit your Instagram photos with bokeh effects.

Bokehul is another one in the line of tools to edit Instagram pictures that offers a unique range of settings. You can optimize your Insta pics and add hearts, glitter or anything you like with this app — and combine a great filter with another great set of ‘bokeh’ patterns showing on screen.

So, what this app offers is a quick and easy way to spruce up your photos with a range of customizable bokeh-style lighting effects that you can apply to your images to make them simply Bokehful.

Tip: You can customize the gradients of the bokeh effects and pick from the variety of colors and the option to edit the direction of the gradients.

8. Quick

For all the users who want to add text to their Instagram photos, Quick is the right app for it. Finally, you can edit your Instagram pictures in an interesting way — and add text that differs from the stock and generic text options that your phone has.

The variety of fonts that match or complement your business image is what makes Quick amazing. Whether you are posting a landscape photo and want to add a quote to it — or maybe showcasing your latest achievement, Quick is one of the Instagram photo tools everyone should have on their phones.

Quick is also great if you want to memorize or add a note to some photo you just saved — or organize it into a different folder. Basically, an app for everything, with a simple feature that is practical and handy.

Tip: Want to sell your motorcycle or car efficiently? Use Quick to annotate your photos and provide useful information to your followers, packed elegantly.

9. Facetune

Want to have the most glowing face — without a spot or a wrinkle on it?

Finally, the app for that is here. Facetune is the name — and there are a lot of features that let you edit your Instagram portraits in a whole new way. The Facetune toolbox comes perfect for all amateur photographers who want to replicate the effects of the legendary Photoshop and make sure that they show everyone in their best light.

The palette of natural highlights, fixes and shadows is what makes Facetune popular among the entire audience. There are tons of ways to correct your tiny skin imperfections on Instagram with a couple of swaps and taps.

The app is simple to use and features a circle where all the changes are made, configured from the bottom-line panel where you swap through them.

Tip: Your LinkedIn photo can also look more professional now — thanks to Facetune and the variety of skin/face fixes you can use to tweak it!

10. 8mm Vintage Camera

We all know that Instagram is the heaven for hipsters looking for vintage apps for Instagram pictures and all the effects that bring back the fashion of the 60s and 70s. Well, 8mm Vintage Camera is one of them — and is an app that offers you a bundle of effects for shooting vintage videos.

You can add everything from dust to scratches, flickering frames as well as light leaks to tweak your almost-perfect shot to vintage times. The Instagram Import feature works great if you want to import your photo or video directly on Instagram and hopefully upload it to your fans.

Tip: The next time you host a party, tell your friends about this app — and let them choose from the minimalist, elegant, silent film or countdown themes when uploading their photos — to create the perfect vintage party.

11. A Color Story

Instagram has never been so colorful — and this is one of the apps that contributes to its spirit. A Color Storylets you take a simple shot of a banana and coffee and make it pop, ready to be published on Instagram.

The app is great when you want to edit your Instagram pictures and make them more colorful. By using bright whites and amazing highlights, its primary focus is color and adding it to your original photos that lack it.

Easy to use and with an elegant UI, A Color Story deserves a spot in the list of tools to edit Instagram pictures with. There are different features including Essentials, Cinema, Blush, Organic etc. — all created to make your photos pop.

Tip: This app is among the very few that offer you to slide around the effect to wherever you want it on the photo.

12. Perfect365

We all know that some Android phones can make you look weirder on the front camera. They tend to resize your eyes and distort your face. The results can be terrifying, and the best way to correct them is to use an app as simple as Perfect365.

Similar to Facetune yet a lot different, Perfect365 lets you perfect your Instagram pictures — particularly selfies — and make yourself look like a model. From teeth whitening to increasing your eyes and polishing your skin tone, everything looks better with a few taps of this app.

Tip: This app is so good that even Kim Kardashian uses it to edit her selfies before posting them to Instagram!

A Final Word

Long gone are the times when Instagram pictures were simple, blurry and wouldn’t drive engagement. Now, the only way to make your feed stand out is to use some (or all) of these tools and achieve perfection in your photos — in every way possible.

We hope that this guide helped you learn how to take great Instagram pictures!

by: instaengagement