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Photoshop Express vs. Lightroom

Photoshop Express vs. Lightroom

The debate between Photoshop Express vs. Lightroom has been ongoing for a long time. Both offer great features and online tools for editing.

But you want to know whether to invest in Adobe Photoshop Express or Lightroom based on your photography needs. Let us delve into each program.

Quick comparison

Photoshop Express is a basic editor with stickers and text, whereas Lightroom is more for professional work to improve the overall image tone.

What are both

Photoshop Express

Photoshop Express
Photoshop Express Interface

Photoshop Express is an elder brother of Lightroom on PC, but the table turns on the mobile.

With Photoshop Express, you can place images in meta folders and add descriptive metadata for file saving and sharing purposes.

One of the primary complaints is that you can only work on one photo at a time, and the editing is a bit complicated for beginners.

Some features you can operate with include:

  • Resizing images and cropping out edits
  • Light adjustments
  • Adjusting pixel settings
  • Change shadows, highlights, and contrast angles
  • Saturate, clarify, sharpen, or reduce noise

It also allows you to add text to photos, correct red-eye, remove blemishes, add watermarks, and eliminate blur in photos.


Adobe Lightroom Mobile
Adobe Lightroom Mobile Interface

If you like the ease of use, this is the program you need. It’s accessible and fun to edit, and you can share images on Facebook and Flickr.

This is a definite selling point for younger users who like social media. It utilizes a library-style system to save edits.

So, you can view multiple forms of your images in one place; this is impossible with Photoshop Express.

A significant drawback is editing; Lightroom does not offer as many tools as Photoshop.

However, if you are a beginner in photography who doesn’t have that crisp eye for detail, this is a great tool to help you learn the editing process and create nice-looking digital shots.

Lightroom features an intuitive interface, which allows you to create presets to save time and quickly transfer adjustments in your catalog.

Graduated filters and crop overlay tools are also an excellent addition, and the web export tool is something younger users who like sharing everything will deeply appreciate.

Related: Snapseed vs. Lightroom

Photoshop Express vs. Lightroom


Photoshop Express vs Lightroom Mobile
Photoshop Express vs. Lightroom Mobile

The table compares the tools both offer for free. Overall, Photoshop Express supports more.

Photoshop ExpressLightroom
Looks (over 100)
Lights (over 85)
Pre-made aspect ratios
Transform (multiple)
Color adjustment
Blemishes remove
Red-eye remove
Text editor
Borders (over 25)
Collage maker
Profiles (over 45)
Auto adjust
Auto fix
Light adjustment
Color adjustment
Split tone
Optics (unique)
Color presets (6)
Tools comparison

File handling

Lightroom does not edit photos or move them around; users’ changes are kept within their catalog. It keeps a log of edits, but the original image remains intact.

The app has more RAW format editing options than its opponent.

Photoshop Express operates differently. You’re always working on the original file when editing an image unless a PSD file is saved (iOS only).


Both export in JPG formats. Photoshop offers to choose image resolution.

You can also select the original to get the original image resolution back. Lightroom exports the same resolution with an option to change the resolution.

Every time you share on Lightroom, the app asks whether to add and show a watermark, caption, photo location, and photo info, while Photoshop only offers to add a watermark.

Related: VSCO vs. Lightroom


Both are free to use, but some options are premium. Photoshop Express iOS is more advanced than the Android version. Lightroom has almost the same options on both platforms.

Usage differences

Ultimately, it is a personal decision and possibly a generational one. For those who like the original, Photoshop Express wins. It is the gold standard.

You know you’re getting quality, precision, and unparalleled use of editing tools. It is, however, more complicated to use.

If you are a beginner or novice, it will require a learning curve and Adobe and other tools over time to perfect the craft.

If ease of use, simplicity, social sharing, and the option to edit multiple photos at once are what you seek, Adobe Lightroom is the winner. It is effortless to use, and there’s virtually no learning curve.

If you want more editing tools, filters, cropping, exacting detail, or a more advanced photographer, you might opt for Photoshop Express.

And, with the same price point, this aspect will not edge out one program over the other if you’re trying to find a more affordable option.

It is the debate of new versus old. Both offer great features, functions, and editing. If you are a purist who wants excellent editing and sharpness, Photoshop Express is it.

For those who want new, fresh, and zero-guess work, go with Lightroom.

Photoshop ExpressLightroom Mobile
Photoshop Express and Lightroom Apps


Photoshop Express vs. Lightroom covered essential topics. I hope the article helped you pick your ideal app.

Let me know what you think of both in the comments below. Also, subscribe to the newsletter for future updates.