January 27, 2023 | 2273 Views

What is the Best Alternative to Photoshop?

If you’re a photographer, ON1 Photo RAW is one of the best Photoshop alternatives because it offers many of the same editing tools and features, such as layers, layer masks, text, luminosity masking, blending modes, content-aware tools, retouching tools, special effects, and more. It also has specialized tools for working with raw files making it an excellent raw photo editor. In fact, it’s a lot like having Camera Raw, Lightroom, and Photoshop combined into one application. The best part about ON1 Photo RAW is that it simplifies a lot of complex tasks and editing that come with a program like Photoshop.

The user-friendly interface in Photo RAW is easy to navigate if you are familiar with using any of those Adobe applications, making it a great option for both beginner and professional workflows. We also offer a non-subscription-based pricing model and constantly update ON1 Photo RAW with new features, performance enhancements, feature refinements, camera support, and lens support. Overall, ON1 Photo RAW is a solid photo editing software choice for photographers looking for a powerful and flexible Photoshop alternative.

Whether you’re looking for alternatives to Photoshop because you want to avoid paying Adobe’s monthly subscription fee, or you just can’t seem to find your way around the powerful, but very complex Photoshop, there are still other options available in the photo editing space. There are certainly a wide range of other options for photographers and photo editors to use as an alternative to Photoshop, but finding the right software that is easy to use, but still nearly just as powerful as Photoshop can be a challenge. Generally speaking, the more powerful the software, the more difficult it is to use, the more you pay for it, but not in the case of ON1 Photo RAW. It comes at an incredible value for the price you pay.

Our full suite of standalone and plugin apps help you take your photo editing to the next level. ON1 programs are easy to use and contain powerful adjustments and features that rival those seen in Photoshop. If you’re looking for the best alternatives to Photoshop, look no further than ON1. Let’s dive in and take a look at some of the features of ON1 Photo RAW that make it one of the best alternatives to Photoshop for photographers.

Features of the Best Photoshop Alternatives


It’s no secret that Photoshop lacks easily applicable photo effects to add to your photos. While there are plenty of effects you can create, they usually involve a multi-step process, and it isn’t easy or straightforward to apply. In ON1, there is a whole section for effects. Whether you want to add a Sun Flare, give your photo some Dynamic Contrast, or make a Color Adjustment, ON1 Photo RAW has 31 effects that are easy to apply and highly effective. Best of all, these effects are searchable, stackable, easy to control, and fine-tuned for the perfect photo edit. Adding similar effects in Photoshop is both confusing and very time-consuming.

Effects in Photoshop Alternatives
ON1 Effects can do many things to your photos in an easy-to-apply and quick-to-adjust way. Best of all, multiple effects can be stacked on top of each other and combined with a mask to restrict the effect to a particular part of your image.


One of the quintessential Photoshop features is layers. Layers allow you to stack multiple photos — or photo adjustment layers — on top of each other. Luckily, ON1 has layer support for your image edits. While not quite as complex as Photoshop’s layers, ON1 has just the right amount of features in an easy-to-use package that will serve its purpose well.

Unlike many other alternatives to Photoshop, ON1’s layers have the ability to pair with a layer mask, allowing you to quickly and easily use masking to target particular parts of your layer.

AI Masking

Without any third-party plugins, the masking tools provided in Photoshop are average at best. While using the Quick Selection tool or the Color Range tool can be helpful, ON1 has similar masking tools with more options. Many of the masking tools in ON1 use AI technology to make quick selections that are as simple as a single click. There are multiple AI-based tools to make selections to apply to layers, effects, local adjustments, and more. Between Super Select AI and Quick Mask AI, you’ll have all the necessary masking features at your fingertips.

Masking with Photoshop Alternatives
Using ON1’s Mask AI tool to make a very quick selection on the foreground of a photo.

AI Noise Reduction and Sharpening

Anyone who has used Photoshop for a long time knows that the noise reduction tools in Photoshop are pretty dreadful. Even most professional Photoshop users rely on a third-party plugin to apply noise reduction to their photos.

In ON1, you can use ON1 NoNoise AI, which is fully integrated within the ON1 Photo RAW editor. This noise reduction software uses AI technology to reduce the noise in your photo with just a few simple clicks. In addition to NoNoise AI, you can also use their Tack Sharp AI to help you fix blurry images or motion blur in your photos. Lastly, ON1 Resize AI even makes it easy for you to sharpen and resize your photos for print, web, and more., right within ON1 Photo RAW.

AI Portrait Retouching Tools

Retouching with Photoshop Alternatives
These are just a few of the sliders that help you fine-tune your portraits.

Photoshop has long been known as the professional standard for portrait retouching software. However, retouching your portraits in Photoshop isn’t easy, nor is it simple to figure out. Unless you’re a long-time portrait professional, you probably don’t know all of the tricks you need to know in Photoshop to retouch your portraits.

ON1 makes portrait retouching easy. With a whole section dedicated to retouching portraits, you can do things like individually adjust each eye, the nose, or the mouth, as well as whiten teeth, adjust the size of the head, and smooth skin tones. Best of all, you can do this with a few simple sliders. ON1 will automatically find each eye, nose, and mouth and let you make simple yet effective adjustments.

Try the Best Photoshop Alternative for Yourself

In conclusion, ON1 Photo RAW is one of the best Photoshop alternatives available today. It offers a comprehensive set of features and an easy-to-use interface, making it a great option for photographers of all skill levels. Whether you’re a professional or an amateur, ON1 Photo RAW is a powerful raw photo editor that can help you take your photography to the next level. So, if you’re looking for a high-quality and efficient alternative to Photoshop, ON1 Photo RAW is definitely worth exploring.

Discover the Raw Photo Editor from ON1

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