How to Blur Out Parts of a Picture

how to blur faces in pictures - guy with blurred eyes
Table of Contents

Blur is more of a norm when it comes to photo editing in recent times. If you have an area in your picture that is out of focus, it can enhance the entire scenery! Blur out the background to help your subjects be at the forefront, or unfocus a face to censor a subject in an image.

When working with blur in a photo, you must maintain care. Otherwise, you may receive a hazy look. If you want to learn how to blur out parts of a picture, consider any of the variety of methods seen below.

Using a Mac

If you need to blur a part of a photo on a Mac computer, the Preview or Photos app is perfect. So long as you have the OS system or above, you can do some basic editing techniques using these two programs.

Preview App

To blur parts of an image on Preview, follow the below steps. This method provides to censorship needs best as it only deletes part of your image.

  1. Double-click the photo to open Preview automatically.
  2. Use the mouse to draw over an area to blur.
  3. Press the “delete” button on the keyboard.
  4. Save the image

Photos App

The Photos app built into the Mac allows for more extensive editing. You can work on any specific pixel that exists on your image. For these editing features, you need the OS X software or later. The below steps will help you know how to blur out parts of a picture on a Mac using this tool.

1. Open the Photos app.
2. Select the photo you want to edit.

How to blur out parts of a picture - open the photos app

3. Click on the toolbar in the app, then the button that says “edit.”
4. Press R on the keyboard to open the re-touch tool.

How to blur out parts of a picture - click on edit

5. Use the zoom feature to directly observe parts of the photo requiring blurring.
6. Choose and click an area of your photo that is already blurry.

use the brush to blur the section

7. Drag your mouse to the area you want to be blurred.

How to blur out parts of a picture - drag your mouse to the area you want to be blurred

7. Click on “Done”

click on done on your photos app

Using a PC

Two app options exist when wanting to know how to blur out parts of a picture on a PC. These are the Paint app and the Photos app, both of which come pre-installed on any Windows computer you purchase.

Paint App

Windows brought many improvements to Paint on its computers, and it is now actually called Paint 3D. Though not as strong as photo editing software, this app can blur parts of an image with ease by using the steps below.

1. Open the Brushes menu, then choose the Select option.
2. Draw over what needs blurring.

open the brushes menu - how to blur faces in pictures

3. Use the lower right corner button to make your selection extremely small.
4. Click anywhere else on your image to turn the selection white.

make your selection extremely small - How to blur out parts of a picture

5. Choose the re-sized section.
6. Increase the section to its original size.

choose the re-seized section - How to blur out parts of a picture

7. Click on the image again.

blur section - How to blur out parts of a picture

Photos App

The Photos app on Windows computers has a tool for blurring built-in. It is done through the vignette filter, and you do not have to permanently save the image if you do not like the results. You can use it with the steps below.

1. Click the image you want to edit in the Photos app.
2. Choose the Edit and Create menu, pressing edit after.

click on edit - How to blur out parts of a picture

3. Go to the adjustments section and apply the vignette.
4. On the bottom right, press the button that says “save a copy.”

clarity and vignette and then click on save - How to blur out parts of a picture

Using an Android Device

Android phones come with multiple methods to use their app to blur faces in photos, objects, or even backgrounds. You can know how to blur out parts of a picture on your Samsung, the most common variety of this type of smartphone, by using any methods that are below.

Gallery App

The most basic way to blur parts of an image on an Android is through the utilization of the Gallery app. Open the image just like you want to preview it, then follow the below steps.

1. Press on the button resembling a pencil that means edit.
2. Choose the decoration icon, represented by a pencil and photo.

press the pencil - How to blur out parts of a picture

3. Go to the covers option which contains the blur feature.
4. Use your finger to draw a box over an area of the photo needing a blur.
5. Make adjustments as necessary and press the image in the bottom right corner.

click on covers and select the section you want to blur - How to blur out parts of a picture on Android

Third-Party Apps

Many third-party apps exist to help you blur out parts of a photo on an Android. The most popular is Point Blur, which allows you to draw over what to blur, letting the system do the rest.

Another option is to use an app called Blur Photo, which is also available on iPhones. First, there is an option called “Background Blur,” where you only have to move the selection over parts of the photo you want to make blurry. Another option is to use the “Shape Blur” function to adjust an exact shape to blur over a specific area of your photo.

Using an iPhone

To know how to blur out parts of a picture on iPhone, you can use third-party iPhoto apps. Options include Blur Photo, as mentioned above, among others. Portrait mode is another option to blur the image from the moment you click the shutter.

Parts of a Photo

This type of smart device is unique in that there are varying methods for blurring the background or specific objects. For how to blur out parts of a picture on iPhone, rather than the background, use a third-party mobile app.

1. AfterFocus

AfterFocus is one of the easiest mobile apps for new users to know how to blur out parts of a picture on iPhone. After you choose your photo, use smart selection to choose what needs to be blurry. You can then use the focus mode to outline the areas that need to be sharp.

2. iColorama

iColorama is one of the most powerful options that allow you to quickly learn how to blur out parts of a picture on iPhone using a mobile app. The software lets you perform editing in any way you can think to do. It is best if you have some expertise already.

3. PhotoToaster

PhotoToaster is a mobile app for your Apple smart devices that lets you blur parts of your photo with a click of a button. The software will detect the areas that may be part of the background. You can also manually choose the scene.

Blur the Backgrounds

PhotoToaster is the best of the three mobile apps to blur backgrounds automatically. You can also use Portrait mode by using the steps below to answer how to blur out parts of a picture on iPhone.

1. Choose the Camera app.
2. Scroll to the Portrait option.
3. Select the lighting option you would like to use.

portrait mode on iphone - How to blur out parts of a picture

4. Instruct your subject to stand two to eight feet from the camera lens.
5. Press the shutter button.

select the contour light option, then take a a picture - How to blur out parts of a picture on iPhone

Use Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop is available on mobile devices and computers as an app to blur faces in photos, objects, and backgrounds. To learn how to blur out parts of a picture using Photoshop, use the below methods.

Blur Faces and objects

One of the best ways to know how to blur faces and objects in pictures is to use the Gaussian blur in Photoshop. This is a filter that is pre-installed in the Adobe software that allows you to preview your blur first. To use this feature, follow the below steps.

1. Open Photoshop with the image you want to edit.
2. Choose the marquee tool, that resembles a dotted rectangle, in the toolbar.

on photoshop select the section you want to blur - How to blur out parts of a picture

3. Draw over the object you want to blur.
4. Select the Filter menu from the top of the software.

blur and click on gaussian blur on photoshop - How to blur out parts of a picture

5. Go to the Blur menu, then Gaussian blur.
6. Observe the preview while increasing the radius until the blur you need is present.

control the amount of the blur effect you want to add

Blur Backgrounds

One of the most tedious ways to answer how to blur background images in Photoshop is to use the brush tool. You can do this method in correlation with the same filter aforementioned. Some other ways to blur the background in Photoshop are below.

Field Blur

The Field Blur filter lets you preview what Photoshop automatically detects as the background. Add a pin to the photo for the area you want focused on, then press apply.

Iris Blur

When using the Iris blur filter, you first select what will be in focus, making it perfect if you want to know how to blur faces in pictures. Adjust the size of the circle to ensure that only what is outside of it is blurry.

Additional Paid Programs

Photoshop is not the only software that lets you learn how to blur out parts of a picture. This former program does cost money, just like the three additional options found below.

1. BeFunky

BeFunky has five tools that will help you know how to blur faces in pictures or backgrounds. Each is under the Blur and Smooth menu in the program. Read below to learn more about each.

Smoothing

The Smoothing tool minimizes how sharp your image is. To add this very slight blur to only certain sections of your photo, you can use the erase feature with this one.

Blur

The Blur tool allows you to have a very pixelated effect. You can even make the entire photo blurry if you so desire. To learn how to blur parts of a picture with this method, you will use the paint tool over the background or a face.

Funky Focus

The Funky Focus tool supplies you with a circular shape. You center it over what you want in focus. Around that circle, you can add pixelation, make the blur tilted, and more.

Blur Edges

In understanding how to blur out parts of a picture using this feature, you must know the Blur Edges tool only works around the frame. You can change the level of blurriness you desire and the size, however. The vertical and horizontal alignment can change too to gather the perfect balance.

2. Adobe Lightroom

Adobe Lightroom comes with a free trial, but after, you have to sign up for an account. The platform allows you to know how to blur out parts of a picture in less than five minutes by following the below steps.

1. Import a photo you want to edit to Lightroom.
2. Open the module called “develop.”

click on develop - How to blur out parts of a picture

3. Use the adjustment brush for small objects or faces.
4. Choose the radial filter for any area outside of the circle you draw.

use the adjusment brush for small objects or faces

5. Select the graduated filter to select a vertical or horizontal section to blur.
6. For any of the above filters, drop the sharpness until you have the blur you want.

How to blur out parts of a picture - graduated filter to select a vertical or horizontal section to blur

7. Add a new layer with any of the same above three filters if you want a stronger blur.

add a new layer on adobe lightroom - How to blur out parts of a picture

3. Fotor

Fotor has some free pricing options, but some effects do cost money. These include the three used when you want to know how to blur background sections. Each of the blur filters is under the section labeled “tilt-shift.”

Circular

The first option to blur your images is the circular filter. You will draw a circle to focus on a single section of your photo, and everything outside of the shape will be blurry.

Linear

The linear filter lets you put the focus on any horizontal section of your image. Again, everything outside of that section receives a blur effect.

Tilt-Shift Brush

The final tool within Fotor is the tilt-shift brush. You will use the tool to draw over any part of the image you want blurry. This feature is perfect for blurring faces and objects in your photo.

Additional Free Programs

When you want to know how to blur out parts of a picture, you likely want capable programs. Sometimes, however, those programs are expensive. Thankfully, there are free options like the three below.

1. Adobe Spark

Adobe Spark is a multifunctional tool used for a variety of projects, and it is free. This software even has templates that allow you to put a design effect over your blurred image. Spark does only allow for the entire photo to become blurry, however, making it great if you want to know how to blur background pieces.

1. Upload your image of choice to Spark.
2. Select the image you want to edit.

upload photo - How to blur out parts of a picture

3. Look at the adjustment menu and choose the option called “blur.”
4. Adjust the sliding scale until you reach the necessary edits.

blur out parts of a picture - Adjust the sliding scale

5. Add customizations or a template if desired.
6. Download the edited image to your device.

click on download and then start download

2. Photopea

If you want a free method that will help you know how to blur out parts of a picture, consider the Photopea tool. This software utilizes a web platform with many of the same tools available on Adobe Photoshop. To specifically blur out the background or an object in a photo, consider the below list.

Choose the Appropriate Tool.

The first step is to choose the tool you need to select portions of the image. The rectangle or ellipse tool lets you choose parts of the image to focus on using the above shapes. The quick selection or magic wand will choose any areas of your photo that are of the same tone.

The lasso tool lets you freehand draw around an object you want in focus. There is also a polygonal tool where you draw straight edges around something in a photo. Finally, the magnetic ensures you achieve well-defined images.

Choose the Appropriate Tool - How to blur out parts of a picture

Select a Filter

After you have your selections, you will need to add a blur filter. The first is a Gaussian option that will provide the traditional blurriness. The Pixelate filter comes with a variety of pixelation options, with most choosing the Mosaic.

click on blur - Gaussian blur

Export the file

When using Photopea on a computer, you can export your photo to a folder of your choice. In learning how to blur out parts of a picture on iPhone, the platform is mobile-friendly, allowing you to export to your Photos app.

file - export as and click on PNG - How to blur out parts of a picture

3. Canva

Canva is another free tool that allows you to blur your images for free. It’s one of the best tools to blur faces in pictures. In fact, our thumbnail was made with Canva. 

The blur slider is under the Filter menu. You do have to click on advanced options to find it. The further to the right you move it, the more blur you will receive.

You can add graphics, text, or other photos over your background image. Canva is also available on mobile platforms to help you know how to blur out parts of a picture on iPhone or Android devices.

How to Blur Pictures in Bulk

In addition to asking how to make a graph on PowerPoint, you might also be wondering how to edit graph in PowerPoint. Thankfully, this process is just as easy as inserting one.

Photoshop

The easiest way to know how to blur out parts of a picture in bulk is to use Photoshop. You can easily copy settings on one image, pasting them to the next. If you have the right settings marked, the blur, including its location, will carry over.

Other Software

Photoshop is not the only software that allows you to blur images in bulk. If you want a more budget-friendly option, follow the steps using one of the three options below.

1. Photopus

  1. Add JPEG photos.
  2. Go to the button titled “add filters.”
  3. Scroll down to effects, then blur.
  4. Adjust the slider and press ok.

2. ImBatch

  1. Upload images.
  2. Open the “add task” menu.
  3. Scroll to effects, then blur effects.
  4. Adjust the level of blur and the radius.
  5. Press the button labeled “save as” and download your images.

3. Image Tuner

  1. Add images and open the “task” menu.
  2. Click on effects, then filters.
  3. Open the drop-down menu, and choose blur.
  4. Press process, then choose the folder for where to save your images.

Start Editing!

After reading this article, you should feel more comfortable knowing how to blur out parts of a picture or the background of an image. You can utilize multiple free and paid programs ranging from Photopea, a web-based tool, to Photoshop, the most expansive of all.

Make sure that you understand how to use many of the above blur tools, including Gaussian filters, radial filters, and more. Some software even allows you to use any of these features in bulk. These programs are beneficial to photographers and editors who want their photos to have the same look.

More Tips to Explore
Clever Tips From Experts