Improve your looks with Facetune

With this iPhone app, you can quickly and easily edit photos of yourself before sharing online.

The Internet is not a great place for honesty. Do you know how I know this? One hint is the fact that Facetune is currently in the top 5 of the top paid apps for the iPhone. It's a $2.99 portrait photo editor that lets you improve your looks before uploading a profile picture or otherwise sharing photos of yourself online.

Facetune provides 10 easy-to-use tools that let you pinch and swipe to edit your photo. For each tool, you use two fingers to zoom in and move around your image and one finger to apply an effect.

Before and after Facetune. Screenshot by Matt Elliott/CNET

After snapping a shot with the app or loading one from your phone's Camera Roll, you can begin by cropping the shot. The next tool lets you whiten your teeth, should your smile reveal your pearly whites. After the Whiten tool is the Smooth tool, which I found effective in subtly removing the sheen from my skin. The Details tool works in the opposite direction of the Smooth tool. With it, you can accentuate the positive aspects of your mug such as blue eyes or long, lush eyelashes (not pictured).

I recommend you use the Reshape tool with caution. It lets you adjust the shape of your face, but even the slightest swipe can result in a fun-house mirror effect. Within the Reshape tool is a refine button, which lets you make finer adjustments, but even they are difficult to manage without your face getting distorted.

Proceed with caution when using the Reshape tool. Screenshot by Matt Elliott/CNET

With the Patch tool, you are given two circles, which you can pinch to adjust their size and move around your face. One circle selects a sample to replace whatever blemish you have zeroed in on with the other circle. The Tones button works in similar fashion to the Patch button. With it, you can select, say, a dark tone from your hair and use it to replace places where you may be going gray. The Red Eye button is straightforward and works best if you first zoom in on your eyes before using.

The Patch tool lets you remove blemishes (or add a third eye). Screenshot by Matt Elliott/CNET

The last two tools let you spruce up the overall look of your composition. The Defocus tool lets you blur out the background for a faux bokeh effect, and the Filters tool lets you apply various filter effects and add a frame to your image.

All of the edit tools are easy to use and provide two ways to undo changes. Within each tool, you can accept or cancel any changes you make. And on the main workspace of the app -- when you aren't using any particular tool -- there are undo and redo buttons in the lower-left corner, which let you reject changes you may have made earlier in the process. In the lower-right corner is a convenient compare button that gives you a quick look at how much you've tweaked your image. The share button in the upper-right corner lets you share your new-and-improved look on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and Flickr.

 

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