Top 6 best VSCO alternatives

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What is VSCO?

VSCO is a photo editing app that is available to use on both Android and IOS devices. Through VSCO, you can easily capture images via its own app and then simultaneously edit them as per your liking. 

VSCO was launched in 2011 by Joel Flory and Greg Lutze, and since then, the app has seen many different renditions and updates in its interface to make the entire usage of it much better for the users.

However, there are also many different types of apps like VSCO that are available nowadays for usage, and these are some of the reasons why you should look for them for your photos.

Reason to look for sites like VSCO

Reason 1 – No desktop or web editing app

VSCO is strictly restricted to mobile usage only, and it doesn’t have an app for Windows or macOS; it also doesn’t have a website where you can go online to check out and edit your pictures.

For some people, this might not be a big issue because they might like editing their pics on their phone and sharing them instantly, but photographers and editors, definitely do prefer the usage of a bigger screen and more control for editing their photos.

And on a mobile, they just can’t have that similar experience, no matter how many different features and effects you offer.

Reason 2 – Paid Plan

VSCO has a fairly decent amount of filters that are available to use, but if you want the full extent of the range of filters, you would have to pay for its paid subscription services.

VSCO’s paid plan comes for $19.99/year, and it does offer a free trial of seven days with it as well, so you can see for yourself that if it fits as a great editing tool for you, then you can avail of its services.

But still, it should offer a few more filters on its free plan so that people know what it is all about and then decides to purchase it.

Reason 3 – No commenting

This is a feature that you have seen pop up in some editing apps, like in some Adobe products, where the community of people can come out and comment on the work that you share via their app.

It is a nice way of making the experience a little more inclusive for the person who is sending out their work to the world, but in VSCO, you don’t see a feature like this.

As I said, it is an effective feature that boosts the confidence of the individual for their work and should also be done in the VSCO app.

Best VSCO Alternatives

Adobe Photoshop Express

Adobe Photoshop Express is a powerful editing tool from Adobe itself. Given how popular Photoshop is (it is even considered a verb in the dictionary), Adobe decided to launch a free version of it.

On Photoshop Express, you can quickly edit the images as per your liking with the different and wide range of effects and features enabled in it. 

There are also a lot of things to talk about Photoshop Express, things that I liked about it, and things that I didn’t like so much about it, so without wasting any more time, here are some of them.

What we liked about Adobe Photoshop Express

Photoshop Express offers a wide variety of effects and features in its library, so right off the gate, that is a great thing from its side, and the fact that it is coming from Adobe itself is a great thing on its own.

It also has a designated app that you can use on Windows devices as well, so you can easily continue to edit your pics on your laptop or PC devices and instantly share it on social media too.

The overall usability of Photoshop express is also quite good as compared to VSCO, and you can understand what you would have to do to get the best possible version of your edit.

What we didn’t like about Adobe Photoshop Express

There are, of course, things that aren’t so great about Photoshop Express too. For starters, you don’t have an app for macOS, which is funny because they have an app dedicated to Windows.

And this would surely be a bittersweet thing for all Mac users. Yeah, you can download the original Photoshop app on it and do an even better job at editing, but sometimes people just want a simpler version of it.

Photoshop Express is also not entirely free to use. If you want to access its premium features, then you would have to pay a fee of $4/month or $34.99/year. 

Or if you are first time using its services, then you get the option of a $9.99/year offer as well.

Why did we choose Adobe Photoshop Express as a VSCO alternative?

Photoshop Express is a great way to have your photos edited for social media posts and other purposes. It has a dedicated library of features and effects that can truly transform one’s photo.

It also has a dedicated app for Windows devices as well, so you can very easily edit your images and photos on your laptop or PC devices too.

And you also get a better UI than what you would get on apps like VSCO for editing your images and getting the best possible version of it in the quickest manner.

Review and rating of Adobe Photoshop Express

Adobe Photoshop Express is a tool designed to make the entire photoshop experience a whole lot simpler and accessible to a new generation of the audience who find Photoshop to be a little too heavy.

There are some obvious cons on this side, and you are not expected to create the best possible versions of your images which you can on Photoshop, but it is still a pretty good app.

For those reasons and more, I would be rating Adobe Photoshop Express 3.5/5 stars.


PicsArt is also an app that you can use to edit your photos on it. There are a number of different editing choices available on it that make it a good tool for editing purposes.

PicsArt has an app for both IOS and Android devices. For IOS devices, the app is named as ‘PicsArt Photo Editor and Collage’, whereas for Android devices, its name is PicsArt Photo Studio.

There are, of course, many things to discuss PicsArt, things that I liked about it and things that I didn’t like about it so much, so here are some of them.

What we liked about PicsArt

PicsArt is a fairly simple-to-use app. There are a number of edit options available on PicsArt, making it a great app for quick photo editing. Its availability on both Android and IOS devices makes it even better.

It has overall pretty smart editing tools available on it, making it quicker to remove some objects in the images that much more easily. 

And the overall UI of PicsArt is also fairly decent, and there aren’t a lot of complicated things happening on it, which would make any person confused while using it.

What we didn’t like about PicsArt

There are quite a few things that one might not like about PicsArt. For starters, there is no dedicated app for any laptop or PC device and even Mac devices; even a simple web browser extension would have done fine.

The software also does not have a lot of effects on its list, they are some basic effects on it, and you can’t also toggle around much to edit your images.

You also don’t have the option to click images directly from the app itself and edit; it has to come via the gallery of your phone.

Why did we choose PicsArt as a VSCO alternative?

PicsArt is still a pretty decent option available for free online that you can try out to edit your images. It has a designated app for Android and IOS devices, and you can find some pretty cool designs and effects on it.

The overall UI is also pretty simple and basic, and for some people, that might be exactly what they are looking for in terms of an image editor on their phone.

The app is also not very heavy to download, so you can easily find space for it on your phone’s storage.

Review and rating of PicsArt

PicsArt is a good alternative that you can try out for editing your pics on your phone, and it is not too difficult to operate. You just simply have to give it access to your library, and all your images will pop up there.

There is also a paid plan available on it, but that won’t do a lot of help either. It’s a pretty mediocre app in general and doesn’t do a lot of crazy things.

For those reasons and more, I would be rating PicsArt 3/5 stars.


PicSay is also a powerful photo editor that is available to use on mobile devices and has a web extension as well, which is always a welcome addition.

PicSay is supposed to be quite powerful in terms of its photo editing techniques, and this is also a really great thing from its side.

There are many more great things and some not-so-great things about PicSay to discuss, so without wasting a lot of time, here are some of them. 

What we liked about PicSay

PicSay, as mentioned above, is quite a powerful photo editor available. It is available on both Android and IOS devices, and it also has a web extension, so you can use it to edit images on your browser as well.

PicSay also is an app that you can use totally free, and that is always a welcome feature that many people would love to use. It does have a paid plan as well, but you won’t need it to edit your images.

It is also pretty quick in editing your images, so that is a plus point on its side. 

What we didn’t like about PicSay

PicSay is a free application, and that does show in its overall UI and how it is presented. The entire UI of PicSay looks very old, something like an app that came out in the early 2010s, and it is still like that. 

It looks very clustered and not at all as clean as some of the other UIs that you would see on some of the alternatives which are listed in this article.

It also features some silly stickers and fonts to use, which no one would use for their images to post online, and its addition feels all the tackier.

Why did we choose PicSay as a VSCO alternative?

With all the flaws aside, PicSay is still an app that you can use for editing your pics, and it works pretty well too. You have a powerful app that will help you quickly adjust your pics as per your liking. 

It also features a web extension, which you can’t say about VSCO, and that is also an added advantage that you can’t miss about it. 

And the overall performance of PicSay is also quite good and something to look forward to, especially for a free app like this.

Review and rating of PicSay

PicSay isn’t a great app, but it still does a lot more than what you can expect from a free app like this. It has a powerful engine behind the app that makes it runs smoother on any device.

You also get the added bonus of having a web extension that is also quite useful. The only thing I wish they work on is its UI. It seems very old, and no one would want to use such an app like this in today’s time.

For those reasons and more, I would be rating PicSay 3/5 stars.


Snapspeed is also a popular and quite powerful app that you can use to edit your photos on your Android or iOS devices. It has all the bells and whistles that you would be needing in a photo editor app for your phone.

Snapspeed also has tons of different things to talk about, the thing that one would surely like about it and things that one might not like about it so much. So without wasting a lot of time, here are some of them.

What we liked about Snapspeed

Snapspeed offers a really good UI for photo editors. Everything is laid out pretty nicely, and you can easily reach out to the different settings you would like to use for your edits.

The entire software also runs pretty smoothly on both Android and iOS devices, so that is also something to look for when you are using its services.

Snapspeed also has the ability to edit RAW photos straight from your phone camera or you can transfer your camera images to your phone, which is something a lot of photographers would appreciate!

What we didn’t like about Snapspeed

Snapspeed, as you can tell by the number of features and effects that it has, does have quite a learning curve to it. It is not an app that any beginner could jump on and start editing their pics on it.

The UI of it is laid out pretty well to understand but to take full advantage of all its features, you would definitely need some prior knowledge about using this service.

The has also reported many times when it freezes in between editing the photos, and all the edits that you might have done would not get saved, so that is something to look out for.

Why did we choose Snapspeed as a VSCO alternative?

Snapspeed could really be a good alternative to VSCO; it offers a ton of detailed photo edits that many photographers would prefer to use. And on top of all this, Snapspeed is actually free to use as well!

That is an added advantage, and given how many features and effects it packs in one app, that is something quite commendable from their side.

The overall performance of Snapspeed is also quite nice, and you will have a smooth experience running the app.

Review and rating of Snapspeed

Snapspeed is a great application to use for photo edits. It has all the bells and whistles that you would be needing in a free photo editing software. The overall performance of the app is also quite nice and smooth.

There are tons of features available to use on Snapseed, you do have to have some knowledge about photo editing using Snapspeed, but apart from that, it is a very solid app to use.

For that reason, and many more, I would be rating Snapspeed 4/5 stars.


Instasize is also a popular app that many people use for editing their photos on their mobile phones. Some people might get confused with its name, but it is not an app developed by Instagram.

However, it can surely help a lot of people to edit their images to post on sites like Instagram, which is why it has got the name.

There are many things to discuss Instasize, so without wasting a lot of time, here are some of the things that I liked and disliked about Instasize.

What we liked about Instasize

Instasize is a pretty light app, it won’t take a lot of storage out of your phone, and it does all the edits that you would be needing in the app.

It has a paid version too, but given the number of features on its free plan, you won’t be required to pay any amount of your money to edit your photos using this app.

The app offers a lot of different features and effects to customize your photos to your liking, and they are quite good.

What we didn’t like about Instasize

Instasize, even though you might not want to use it, still has a fairly expensive price tag for its paid plan. It costs around $4.99/month, and in that amount, you could subscribe to a streaming service as well.

Apart from that, when you open the app, it always recommends you buy the paid version and doesn’t immediately show you your previous edits made on the app; this makes a lot of people think that they can’t run the app without paying for its fee. 

Why did we choose Instasize as a VSCO alternative?

Instasize is often brought into the conversation when there is a topic about discussing the alternatives to VSCO because they both are fairly good applications, to begin with.

They both offer a pricing model along with which a free plan that has all the features and effects a non-photographer would require for their images.

Instasize is just a little bit better than VSCO in terms of its overall design and the way they have made the app look. It all looks quite clean and simple to use.

Review and rating of Instasize

Instasize is one of the editing apps that I use to edit photos on my phone and share it on different social media sites like Instagram. 

It is quite a powerful application, and even though I use its free plan, I never encounter any ads on it as well. The entire app is quite smooth to run on any device, and you don’t need to have a steep learning curve to use it as well.

Because of that reason, and many more, I would be rating Instasize 3.5/5 stars.

Your Phone’s Gallery

The last alternative in this list is something that not a lot of people surprisingly know about, and even fewer of them use it. It’s your phone’s gallery! 

Nowadays, all the phone manufacturers are putting the effects and features that you would be needing to make your photos look a lot cleaner and better in your phone’s gallery only!

What we liked about Your Phone’s Gallery

First of all, it is all available on your phone, so you don’t have to download any external application or pay for its subscription fee. All of it is included in the app itself.

There are almost all the edits that you would need for your phone, and if you want to get even better pics, then you can click it with the in-built app, as they also have many different features and filters.

What we didn’t like about Your Phone’s Gallery

The whole editing list and features depend on phone to phone. Some manufacturers like to put some extra features on high-end phones to make the money value stand out a lot more.

So, it depends a lot on the type of phone that you are using.

Why did we choose Your Phone’s Gallery as a VSCO alternative?

It is the most convenient way for any non-photographer to edit their pics on. It is all right there in the gallery app itself, so you don’t have to check any third-party apps and give them access to your phone’s gallery.

And plus, it is free of cost as well, with a great set of UI, too, so that is an added advantage too.

Review and rating of Your Phone’s Gallery

Our smartphones nowadays require less of third-party apps because they are all slowly encapsulating all the features of the apps in their OS as well.

You don’t need to look around at any third-party apps to edit your photos. All of it is in your gallery app. Since the list of features varies from different phones, I won’t be rating this sub-category. 

Our recommendations on the best VSCO alternative?

There you have it, six of the best alternatives to VSCO you can use right now. All six of them do target different groups of people, so you have to see for yourself which one suits you best. 

If you are not looking to edit your images heavily, then I would recommend you use your phone’s gallery app to edit the pics. It has all the features you might need.

But if you want to download some third-party apps, then I would recommend you use Instasize and Snapspeed.

Why did we choose Instasize and Snapspeed as the best VSCO alternative?

I chose Instasize because it is a fairly simple app to use, but it has all the features that you might need for your photos, and it instantly shares the images on different social media sites via its app.

Snapspeed, on the other hand, offers a lot of different features in its timeline, and you do need a little bit of a learning curve to use it, but once you learn how to use it, it would be a great app to edit your pics.

But, as always, this has been my list of the alternatives I could find for VSCO. What about you? Do you agree with my list? Or do you prefer some other photo editing apps for your phone?

Sanjit Mansingh

Sanjit Mansingh

Sanjit Mansingh is a Journalism and Mass Communication graduate. While studying in this field he quickly realized what he wants to do in his life: Filmmaking. His interest in writing scripts is what made him give a try in the world of content writing. Sanjit's an avid Movie Geek and is an award winning Director as well.

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