How to Fix Blurry Eyes in Lightroom

How to Correct a Blurry Eye in Lightroom

It happens to every photographer, hobbyist and professional alike, when we capture a wonderful image only to find out later, in post processing, that one of the eyes is "soft" (i.e. a little out of focus).

If the eye or eyes are only a little tiny bit soft, that can usually be saved via a Lightroom brush (I highly recommend the Perfect Portrait Brushes to fix this), but if the eyes are REALLY soft, a brush will not solve the problem.

What can we do to correct this?

In the first year or two of using Lightroom, I would have taken images like this one to Photoshop to fix. However, over the years I have learned how to make the most of the clone and heal tools and find that I can now do 99% of ALL my editing work in right in Lightroom. This is one of the Lightroom editing tricks I use from timte to time, and I hope you are able to utilize it in the future as well.

Using the Lightroom Clone Tool to Replace a Blurry Eye with a Copy of the Sharp Eye

Important note - this trick only works if you have at least one eye that is sharp and the reflection and catchlights are very similar in both the eyes.

  1. Zoom into the eyes so you can work in more detail.
  2. Click on the Spot Removal icon in the local adjustment tool bar, just below the Histogram panel.
  3. Click on the Clone tool.
  4. Move your mouse into the image and brush only over the pupil and iris of the soft/blurry eye.
  5. Move the target area that comes up (because LR will NOT choose the right area automatically) over the sharp eye.
  6. If it is too obvious then lower the opacity which will help it blend in.

How to Clone an Eye in Lightroom

If you are more of a visual learner, I put together a short video tutorial demonstrating how to do this below:

Fixing Problem Photos in Lightroom

Do you have any questions or comments about How to Fix Blurry Eyes in Lightroom?  Leave me a comment below - I would love to hear from you!  And PLEASE SHARE this post using the social sharing buttons (we really appreciate it)!

Lightroom Portrait Presets

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