Photoshop Question.

If I take a picture of myself and open it in photoshop how do I use the paintbrushes or whatever to get rid of my zits semi convincingly? Whenver I use the eyedropper or paintbrushes it really look bad and doctored. I just want to remove my zits without turning them in to a big brown blob.

I am totally new to this program so any basic step by step clicking would be awsome, but if you don’t have the time just tell me what tool to use to get the zits to match my surrounding skin.


  1. Click on the clone stamp tool in the toolbar (it looks like a little rubber stamp).

  2. Choose a brush size that’s slightly larger than the zit.

  3. Hold down the ALT key and click on an area of clear skin right next to the zit.

  4. Now paint over the zit. Experiment until it looks right.

It’s best to try and use an “adjustment layer” to make changes to the original image.

That way it’s easy to hide and unhide it to compare the difference between the old image and the new. It also keeps the original file intact.

You’ll find loads of free info and advice on the web.

there’s also the blur option…select the skin colour from the photo, then blur the zits…

Cool. Thanks. Ill try the stamp thing. I just tried the blur tool and that worked pretty well too. Still leaves a “light” dark patch if you know what I mean. I am going to try the stamper.

I thought there would be some sort of “Zit Filter” or something I could use. Isn’t there a way to eliminate part of the spectrum of colors from the area? I am probably making this more complex than it needs to be though.

That stamper works like a champ. Its hard to decide between the blur tool and the stamper. They both look pretty convincing. Thanks gang.

If you wanna go all out like the glossy mags do, first use the stamp tool to smooth out the obvious blemishes, then copy the layer. (Drag it onto the “Create new layer” button in the layers window.)

Hide the top layer, and then use the gaussian blur filter on the bottom layer until the skin looks very smooth and no pores are visible.

Show the top layer again, and use the Sharpen filter on it.
Set the opacity to about 30%

Add a layer mask on the top layer. (The button is in the layers window.)

Working on the layer mask, use the airbrush (set the colour to black) to trace all the spots that should be detailed. (Hair, eyes, edges of nostrils, etc.)

Adjust the opacity of the top layer until it looks right.

Congratulations, you’ve got no pores, just like Brittney Spears. (Or at least her photos.) You may like this effect, or you may find it creepy as hell. COSMO readers can’t get enough of it, it seems.

This is also a good way to get rid of surface wrinkles on old prints. (The before/after .gif doesn’t show nearly as much detail, particularly the aging, as the print-quality image-- but you get the idea.)

I’d say go for the “clone” stamp, and not the blur. I find the blurring effect quite noticable.

Larry’s got a good technique, but for a slightly for subtle effect you can try this…

  1. Convert to CMYK mode
  2. Click on Show Channels from one of the menu bars (I think its Windows or somethinglike that)
  3. Select the magenta channel by clicking on it
  4. (Optional) Click the eye on the CMYK channel so you could look at all the color channels while working only on the magenta channel.
  5. Go to Smart Blur (or Blur and Gaussian Blur) and play around with the values until your skin is smoothed out to your liking.
  6. Reselct the CMYK channel and you’re done

A lot of skin defects tend to show up on the magenta channel of images, so to preserve sharpness in the image yet soften skin details, I like to just blur this channel a little. It still ends up looking realistic, since the sharpness in your cyan and black (and yellow) channels remains. If you want to sharpen up a little bit more, then I’d suggest just selecting the black channel and sharpening that.