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How To Remove Background in Snapseed

Posted by Anna Middleton on May 9, 2019
Snapseed How to Remove Background

If you’ve taken an excellent photo for your Instagram profile but find the background too distracting, you can easily tone it down or completely remove it using Snapseed. This Google-owned software is the go-to photo editing tool for Instagrammers around the world. Available for both Android phones and the iPhone, Snapseed gives you features you’d expect from desktop photo editors in a compact packaging.

This article will show you how to remove background in Snapseed.

Before You Start

Whenever you want to edit a photo in Snapseed, you need to open the app and tap anywhere on the characteristic gray screen with a large plus sign in the middle. Alternatively, you can also tap on the “Open” link in the top-left corner of the screen.

Snapseed Remove Background

Once you’ve done that, a list of your most recent photos will open. You can either tap on a photo from the list to load it and start editing or tap on the three horizontal lines in the top-left corner and choose the location of the photo. You can choose between the Google Drive, the Images and Downloads folders, your phone’s Gallery, and the Photos app. Find the photo you want to edit, tap on it, and it’s time to go.

Removing the Background

For this example, we’ll use this beautiful photo of pink and white tulips set against a pink background.

Let’s say that for whatever reason you want to completely remove that pink background and make it white instead. To do this, you need to take the following steps:

  1. Open the photo in the Snapseed app.
  2. Tap on “Tools” at the bottom-center.
    Snapseed Background
  3. This will open a list of tools that you can use to manipulate the photo. For the purposes of whitening the background, tap on the Brush tool. You’ll find it in the third row from the top.
    Background Remove Snapseed
  4. In the menu at the bottom of the screen, tap on “Dodge & Burn”.
  5. Use the up and down arrows to adjust the brush intensity, which can range from -10 to 10. For this particular project, we will set it to 10.
  6. Start moving your finger across the pink background that you want to remove. Move it as if you were coloring with a pencil, but don’t press too hard on your screen so that you don’t damage it. You will notice that the background is gradually fading out as you keep moving your finger.
    Remove Background Snapseed
  7. Optionally, you can tap on the eye icon in the lower-right part of the screen. With the eye feature enabled, the red color will indicate the intensity of the tool. This is convenient as it shows you the lighter areas where you should rub harder to completely remove the background. Once you turn off the eye feature, you will see a white background where there was once pink.
  8. Tap on the checkmark in the bottom-right corner to save your current changes.
  9. To remove the background around the finer details, pinch the image to zoom in and use the blue rectangle in the bottom-left to navigate the photo.
    How to Remove Background Snapseed
  10. Carefully apply the brush around the edges of the object (in this case – flowers) and pay attention not to accidentally erase a portion of the object.
  11. After you have carefully removed the entire background, once again tap on the checkmark.

Saving Your Photo

With all your changes successfully saved and your background removed, it is time to export the finished photo. As you can assume, you need to tap on the “Export” link in the bottom-right corner of the screen.

Remove Background on mobile Snapseed

Once you do, you will be given the following four options:

  1. Share – Allows you to share the image directly to your friends via Gmail, Facebook, Bluetooth, or other services. You can also use this option to post the photo directly to your Instagram feed.
  2. Save – As the name suggests, saves a copy of the photo in the Snapseed subfolder in your phone’s Gallery.
  3. Export – Similar to the previous option, it saves a copy of the photo in the Snapseed subfolder.
  4. Export As – Lets you choose the filename as well as the location where you want to have the photo saved. Using this option, you can also save it directly to your Google Drive.

Over to You

Is there some other way you know to remove background from photos using Snapseed? Do you have some Snapseed pro tips to share with the community? Let us know in the comments below!

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