What is the best Free photoshop alternative in 2020

What is the Best Free Photoshop Alternative in 2020?

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What is the best free Photoshop alternative out there?

We get this question most from the photographers who just started their brand.

As a starter, it will be challenging for you to pay Adobe every month for using it.

Besides that, you can’t get the most out of Photoshop as you will find its interface a little bit intimidating.

So, you don’t want to spend $20.99 or $9.99 each month while you fail to get the 100% output.

Undoubtedly, Photoshop is the best photo editing software out there and lets you handle every editing task.

But as a newbie, in most cases, you face those two problems I mentioned earlier- first, you don’t have enough budget.

And second, you find the interface of Ps difficult.

However, having a lack of budget or find the Ps difficult doesn’t mean you fail to make your photograph pop up.

Indeed, a lot of photography apps available out there that help you to edit photos precisely.

In this guide, I have listed the top 5 free photo editing apps that you can use as a Photoshop alternative.

Of course, these apps don’t come with advanced features like Photoshop but able to change the look of your photo from general to beautiful.

So, let’s dive in.

Wha is the best free Photoshop alternative app in 2020?

Gimp, Picmonkey, Pixlr, Krita, Paint Net, Photoshop Pos Pro, and Fotor are the best free Photoshop alternative apps in 2020.

Now, let’s take a look at each of the app and figure out what features make them best.

01. GIMP

GIMP- best free Photoshop substitute

Gimp is an open-source photo editing app and has Photoshop alike features.

Like Photoshop, it has featured with advanced photo editing tools to edit your photos precisely.

Advanced pen tool, brush tool, perspective correction tool, and blemish remover makes GIMP great.

Using those tools, you can fix errors and remove unwanted elements from your photo flawlessly.

As GIMP has come with almost every tool for editing, you can handle basic to pro-level editing workflows.

However, GIMP has also some shortcomings. It doesn’t offer non-destructive editing workflows.

Therefore, like Photoshop, it has no drawing capabilities.

Either way, it has a steep learning curve. So, as a beginner, you can find GIMP difficult to use.


  • Come with a lot of editing tools
  • Let you do basic to advanced retouching workflow
  • Advanced layer system
  • Completely free to use


  • Steep learning curve
  • Complex interface

02. Picmonkey

PicMonkey- free Phoshop online app

PicMonkey is one of the best free Photoshop online alternative apps on this list.

Although PicMonkey doesn’t have Photoshop alike features but makes editing simple with its user-friendly interface.

The interface of PicMonkey is clean and easy to understand.

As a result, anyone who has no remarkable skills in editing can edit photos using it a while.

It included a lot of basic photo editing tools including Crop Canvas, Rotate, Background color, and Resize tools.

Crop canvas tool lets you scale up your photo changing the aspect ratio.

You can also change the width and height of the photo putting your desired value.

Auto Adust section of PicMonkey lets you change the exposure, color tint, and the sharpness of your photo precisely.

The best part is all the tools related to auto-adjust are slider-based. It means you can easily adjust exposure, clarity, and color tint moving the sliders from right to left.

For pro editing, you can use the Clone, Dode, Burn, Levels, and Curves tools.

Touch up module of PicMonkey has specially designed for portrait photographers.

This module included a bunch of retouching tools including Blemish Fix, Wrinkle removal, eye enhancement tools, and much more.

Using these tools, you can easily make your portrait photo stunning.

Moreover, PicMonkey has come with a lot of effects, textures, and templates to make editing simple and fun.

Indeed, it is an all-in-one photo editing apps that let you edit photos, create photo collages, and graphic elements.


  • Loaded with a lot of basic and retouching tools
  • 1000+ free templates
  • Free effects and presets
  • Photo collages templates
  • Free graphic elements


  • Easy to use
  • User-friendly interface
  • No steep learning curve
  • Complete free to use


  • Not perfect for advanced level editing
  • Limited features in the free version

03. Pixlr- Photo Editor Online

Pixlr- Online Photo Editor

Pixlr is the best photo editor online that you can use instead of Photoshop.

Intuitive interface, Ai editing tools, and a ton of effects doesn’t only make editing workflow easy & quick but also offer next-level experience.

On top of that, Pixlr lets you edit almost every file format including JPEG, PNG, PSD, SVG, and more.

The AI cutout tool of Pixlr lets you remove the background from your photos magically but precisely.

You don’t need to do the repetitive workflows as Ai tools handle them better.

A ton of customizable filters of Pixlr makes photo editing more fun, more efficient, and quick.

You can change the photo filter effects by moving the slider right to the left.

Best of all, it has come with a plethora of decorative texts, overlays, stickers, icons, and borders.

Using them, you can make creative designs and elements with ease. The best part is you don’t need to create them from scratch.


  • Ai photo editing tools
  • Loaded with basic and advanced editing tools
  • Numerous filters and effects
  • Free photo collage templates
  • Plethora of retouching tools available


  • Intuitive interface
  • Easy to edit
  • No learning curve


  • Limited features in the free version
  • Not perfect for advanced retouching workflows

04. Krita

Krita- free Ps alternative for painting

If you are looking for a free Photoshop alternative for painting, then Krita is your go-to software.

Krita is a free open-source painting software created by creative artists.

It has come with advanced brushes, layer systems, vector & text tools, and shape tools.

In short, Krita has come with every tool you need to create drawing and painting.

The interface of Krita is intuitive and lets you customize it the way you want.

Something I love most about Krita is its customizable brush options. It includes over 100 brushes for creating different effects.

The drawing assistant tools of Krita is another feature I like most. These tools help you to erase points and straight lines.


  • HDR painting tools
  • Layer management tool
  • Advanced brushes
  • Select and transform tool


  • Perfect for digital painting and drawing
  • Intuitive interface
  • Free to use


  • Not perfect for retouching, even basic editing workflows

05. Paint Net

Paint Net- free painting software

Paint Net is also a free photo editing software for Pc. You can use it both for editing and painting.

Like Krita, its interface is also intuitive and easy to understand.

To handle and edit multiple images at once, it has a different Tab.

Something that makes Paint Net best than Krita is its special effects, powerful editing tools, layer support.

More above that, it has an active community that offers help and tutorials to be a master on Paint Net.

Unlike Krita, Paint Net has come with a lot of editing tools. Using them, you can enhance your photo quality.

Using Paint Net, you can adjust brightness, clarity, saturation, hue, and much more.

Indeed, Paint Net lets you perform both painting and editing workflows.


  • Powerful editing tools
  • A lot of special effects including red-eye removal, distortion, noise, and blurring
  • Adjustment tools
  • Customizable interface
  • Layering system


  • Free to use
  • Helpful online community


  • Only compatible with PC

Is there anything like Photoshop but free?

Honestly, there is no photo editing software both for free and paid that is equivalent to Photoshop.

But, you can enjoy near or at least minimum feature using the free photo editing software I included above.

Gimp is something that mimics the look and interface of Photoshop. Even it has every photo editing tools as Ps has.

Best of all, you can handle almost every photo editing from basic to advanced using GIMP.

So, if you want to use Photoshop for free, then it is recommendable to use GIMP.

How do I get Photoshop for free in 2020?

Exactly, there is no legal way to get Photoshop free for a lifetime.

However, you can enjoy all the features of Photoshop for a limited time downloading the trial version.

Here are some legal ways to get Photoshop for free.

  • Download the free trial version of Photoshop
  • Use the mobile version app
  • Try out the free Photoshop alternative apps

Following the three simple ways, you can get Photoshop for free.

However, if you want to get Photoshop for a lifetime, then it is recommendable to join its subscription plan.

Can you get old versions of Photoshop for free?

Yes, you can get old versions of Photoshop for free.

You can get Adobe Photoshop CS2 for free and download it without following any illegal method.

To get more details about it, you can check out this article.

Is downloading Photoshop for free illegal?

Specifically, it depends on the downloading method you are following.

If you download the free trial version of Photoshop, then it is not an illegal way to get Photoshop for free.

But it is illegal if you are trying to download the pirated version of Photoshop.

I recommend you never try to download pirated software. It is not only illegal but also very dangerous for your computer.

Computer crash is something that associates with the use of a pirated version of Photoshop.


Honestly, there is no free and paid image editing software that equivalent to Photoshop.

But you can use the software I mentioned in this guide as a free alternative to Photoshop.

Gimp is on the priority list if you want to perform both basic and pro-level editing workflows.

Of course, Gimp is a little bit difficult to use for amateurs but lets you handle every photo manipulation project.

You can also use PicMonkey or Pixlr as they are easy to use.

On the other hand, if you are looking for a free Photoshop alternative for drawing, then use Krita or Paint Net.

Which photo editing apps are you going to try? Have you used these apps before? Which one performs the best?

Let me know your opinion by leaving a comment below.


Sohel Rana is the founder, content crafter, and SEO's at Pic Editor Review. He has grown his passion over years about writing on software, how-to guide, and product description.

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