Best Photo-Editing iPhone Apps

This is a blog entry that a lot of people have requested from me!!

I've already done at part 1 here, but yet with every photo I post people keep asking what apps I used to edit them. And to be honest newer and better apps have popped up so I've changed all my favourites!!

As I mentioned in my previous entry about photo editing on the iPhone, I am a photography app junkie. I actually enjoy shopping for apps and I don't mind paying money for them at all. 99c is such a reasonable amount to pay compared to the thousands needed for photoshop, think about it. I support programs that are made affordable to the mass market, so I pay! It's a principle! If they make programs reasonably priced, people will pay instead of pirating.

Also, I actually regularly go into the "newly released" section in the photography category just to try out new apps. Isn't that crazy? I actually wasted quite a lot of money buying and testing out shitty apps. :X

But it is all worth it because iPhonography is my passion!!

And tadah, here is my updated list of the best photo-editing apps, 2012:

LOL at my self obsessed background

Mei Tu Xiu Xiu (red icon with chinese words) used to be my favourite but now I rarely ever use it anymore.

I've also retained in my list Makeover and Princess Cam, so you can read my review about them here. Princess cam I also rarely use now but I still regularly use Makeover because it is SO EASY to liquify my face with that app, although it isn't very precise or perfect.

So let's start from the top with...


This app costs money but imho it is the BEST purikura app there is!!

There are many purikura apps available but none of them have stamps or borders as gorgeous as Rakuga. You actually get the standard collection free but the rest you have to pay. I actually paid for every single collection and I'd say that the best one is the collage collection and standard. The blog one is not bad either for bloggers but skip the heart and ribbon, they are quite meh.

I love how the collage collection has these lace stamps! You can also use their "pen" tool to draw on your pictures, or use one-touch for a nice frame.

Here's a picture of Igloo I randomly edited with Rakuga... I did this in 1 min but if you put in effort you can make it very, very pretty.

Photo Wonder

Photo Wonder is one of my new favourites... They have lovely filters!! I love this one called "Autumn".

But my favourite is called "Sweety". Sweety makes the saturation of the picture very high but I LOVE to use it in combination with one of Camera360's filters to create this effect:

The photos end up look super pink and romantic... I will talk more about this later!

There is also a "beautify" section in Photo Wonder but I don't think much of it. The effects are not precise and tend to be overdone. Only "remove acne" is good for blurring away a zit.

Oh and one more thing I love about this app? You can sharpen your photos to whatever degree you want, which is really handy!

Mei Ren Xiang Ji (美人相机 Beauty Camera)

Beauty Camera is another app from China that is AWESOME! Photo Wonder is also btw. Thank you BFF for introducing this!

Why I love Beauty Camera is because... THEIR LIQUIFY IS THE BEST THERE CAN BE ON THE IPHONE.

They somehow worked out a system that makes liquifying on the iPhone's little screen extremely precise. It takes a bit more effort but if you are a perfectionist like me you will love it!

I have translated some of the text for my non-chinese readers. (IKR I AM SO NICE)

Once you go into the app you can choose to snap a picture or pick an existing one. What I don't like is that the app immediately makes your photo extremely fair and blurry, which is so unrealistic.

Fortunately, you can choose to reverse this by making the "skin" and "fairness" level to your own preference.

Next, click on the green heart.

You will be given 5 options. I love the liquifying obviously. The makeup part is good too, you can put on blusher and eyelashes and contacts!

This is how the liquifying looks like. It is a bit confusing but basically you place the green circle at where you want to push and you touch the arrows! For example, it is currently placed at my nose to make it smaller. Make sure your tab is under "slimming" or the "big eyes" option will just make your photo bloat.

You can also pick the "hand movement" to be off but I feel that makes it less precise.

That green circle the arrow is pointing at lets you adjust the size of the liquifying brush and where it goes. For example, it is now set to a bigger brush size so I can push my jaw smaller!

Tadah! This is the before and after.


I cannot believe I gave Camera360 a miss in my previous post. At that time I didn't like it because it forces me to snap a photo within the app. Then one day Audrey blogged about this app and I decided to give it a try again.

Now it is probably my favourite app of this lot.


Called "Light Color: Sweet"

This is just a screenshot of the camera lens focusing on my desk and the filter made it look so freaking gorgeous!! This filter is magic!!

These are photos taken with Camera360... NO EDITING AT ALL, not even liquifying. It creates this ultra dreamy pastel vibe which I love. Plus, you can edit the DEGREE to which you want the filter, so you can make it less dreamy if you want.

Oh and I also discovered you can edit existing pictures so you don't HAVE to snap a photo within the app!! OH JOY!!

Only con is that it is a bit troublesome to do that.

As I mentioned I love to layer Photo Wonder's "Sweety" on top of "Sweet". I guess it makes my photos ultra sweet hahahaha

Camera360 has many other filters, and a lot of them are gorgeous. Go explore!


Lumie lets you put bokeh on your photos...

I like the huge selection of bokeh, but I hate it that they don't allow you to tweak the transparency on the bokeh, so a lot of the times it covers your face or is too opaque.

The cosmos range is pretty!

Not bad, huh?

Line Camera

What I like about Line Camera is that it has many super expressive stamps!

Also many cute accessories:

The filters are not bad either (nothing compared to camera360 or Photo wonder) and you can also add text and frames.


Like Lumie, Lenslight lets you add bokeh and various light effects to your photos.

This is the app most people have asked me about... HOW DO YOU ADD A RAINBOW TO YOUR PIC??

With lenslight.

In fact, there are several rainbow variations to choose from, but the best imho is spectrum halo.

Rainbow on top of Igloo!!

Only bad thing is that the interface is so damn ugly. :X I hate black backgrounds.


Of all the framing apps my favourite is Diptic.

Diptic is one of the rare ones that allow you to pick not only a stupid square format, which I need because to post photos to my Photo of the Moment I need the photo to be 4:3 in ratio.

You can also apply some filters to your photos, although they are quite basic.

I also love that you can make the border any size and colour you want and make all the corners rounded!

It is also very easy to use.


Picfx also provides filters and light effects on your pictures.

I don't think much of their filters but their "Light Set" is nice, for bokehs!

They have two heart bokehs which I love! The hearts are rainbow coloured and you can see that you can rotate the bokeh so it doesn't cover the bits you don't want covered, and also you can adjust the transparency!


No need to write much about this. I just use this app to post 3:4 long pictures to instagram. This creates a white background for you and is very easy to use. Another popular variation is squareready.

That's it for the apps... Here are some before and after pictures!!


After Beauty Camera's liquifying (also note how it turned a little bluer)

 After Camera360 in Sweet

After Photo Wonder in Sweety, Rakuga cute, and Lenslight.


After Makeover for liquifying, Rakuga cute for purikura (to cover ugly toilet door) and using Camera360 over the whole picture so that the purikura also looks so pastel and pretty!!

Phew, spent a long time doing this entry, hope you guys like it! :)

Trying to reinstate my comments to the blogger one, once it's up please share your favourite apps too! :D


Anonymous said…
Pixlr-o-matic!Its free and awesome and you can install more filters that are also free. :D
Hana said…
Hello!!! You probably won't read this but it's worth the shot. YOU SHOULD TRY moreBEAUTE2!!! It's a skin editing software available for free in the appstore. It's my favorite app because it gives me the option to toggle the smoothness and brightness of my pictures!!! It decreases skin imperfections and works like no other app I've ever tried!!! I have most of the apps you mentioned here and they are seriously good especially Camera 360. I have sworn by these 2 apps (that I've mentioned). :)
Hana said…
Also, I forgot to mention Lopicca. It's an app that makes your eyes bigger, skin smoother, and face smaller with just a click of a button. But it requires you to crop images to square frames and relies on face detection. Despite that, I still think it's worth trying. :)
Wengie said…
I use pixlr a lot :) There is an online version you can use to filter your photos as well without having to go on the iphone:

use the "pixlr-o-matic for the filters, they have other editing software too for your photos if you don't use photoshop.

My favourite filter is "soloman" which makes nice fashion vintage type shots here is a example:

I'm going to try that 360 camera app with the sweety filter! Looks awesome!
Yvonne said…
Cool... Many Thanks for sharing..
GeekManiac said…
I would like to use this app..
Thanks for sharing this cool app.
Its really glad to find your blog Xiaxue... I reached here by looking for iPhone and i-Pad. The application shared in the blog post are really good and best for editing.
Photo Editing said…
Beautiful work, nice to watch
Anonymous said…
I couldn't find the Mei Ren Xiang Ji (美人相机 Beauty Camera) :(
Anonymous said…
Thank you so much for sharing these apps!!!! Btw photo wonder is awesome!!!!!!!! It's my favorite app!!! xD
justinthomsony said…
Wow........... these apps are really looking cool! It's really one of most authentic and extreme guided post forever. Thanks for updating to us about this quality time application.
Just awesome dear!!iPhone apps are always be providing great quality and interesting apps for his users,and this one is amazing. Thanks for posting such keen information.

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