How to Fix Blemishes and Reduce Wrinkles in Lightroom

A common question we get in the free webinars and at the help desk is how to fix blemishes without taking the image to Photoshop. Many Lightroom users do not realize how useful the "spot removal tool" can be for fixing blemishes such as scratches, food particles, pimples, etc.

This tool continues to be improved with each Lightroom release and really can handle most of your healing and cloning needs.

The spot removal tool is used to remove unwanted objects or blemishes via one of two modes:the clone mode or heal mode.

  • The clone mode is best for hiding unwanted objects by covering them with a copy of another area in the image.
  • †The heal mode is best for fixing blemishes, scratches, etc., because it blends the healed area more with the pixels around it.
How to Fix Blemishes and Reduce Wrinkles in Lightroom

How to Fix Blemishes and Reduce Wrinkles

The tool is used the same way in both modes, but the results may be a little different. Experiment with both and see which one suits the image and problem.
  • Select the area to fix with your mouse (after clicking the spot removal icon).
  • Lightroom will locate an area it thinks the problem area should look like and replace the area you selected with the same pixels as the target area.
  • If you donít like the area Lightroom chose, you can click the circle and move it to another spot that works better for cloning or healing.

The spot removal tool in Lightroom 5 can be any shape of selection. Just click and drag the mouse of the area to fix, then choose a target area that blends well with problem area.

How to Fix Blemishes and Reduce Wrinkles in LightroomWith both the clone and heal tool, you can reduce the opacity, which means you can reduce how strong the copy or fix is. If you want it to blend more, try reducing the opacity.

When I am using the tool for wrinkle reduction, I usually reduce the opacity so that the new pixels blend well with the old and the area around it.

How to Fix Blemishes and Reduce Wrinkles in LightroomThe spot removal tool works GREAT for blemishes, scratches, small particles, etc., so do not think you need to take images to Photoshop for that type of editing.

If you are using the spot removal tool to remove unwanted objects in the image you may be disappointed. The tool can manage with some things, but more difficult cloning will need to be done if Photoshop, then bring the image back to Lightroom for exporting.  

How to Fix Blemishes and Reduce Wrinkles in Lightroom

Hello!  I’m Amanda, a quirky, introverted Mom of four, who is passionate about helping others learn their cameras and editing software. I also currently homeschool my four kids, ages 13 to 6, all whom run away when they see me carrying my camera.  Visit me at my website and facebook page.