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  • Skin smoothing can make a portrait look more attractive and professional, however it should not be overdone to the extent where the skin looks plastic and devoid of detail. There are several ways to achieve this.

Frequency Separation


Clone Stamp

  • Pratik Naik uses the clone stamp tool to take the edge off skin pores in the T-zone using 100% opacity and 2% flow with a very soft brush but doing this with a sweeping motion rather than dabbing as this gives a softer edge. (Ref).

Sample and Paint

  • Good for smoothing out colours and tones making the image look more polished, then adding back texture if necessary. See Phlearn Photoshop 201, no 8 - 29.31-42.07. Precise Skin Retouching. Sample and paint on a new layer with 100% opacity and 10% flow. Sample often and paint just a small area with each colour. (Ref 5:12).
  • Skin texture can be added back above this with a high pass filter. To do this make the adjustment layer invisible. Apply image to get everything on a single layer with the texture. Make it a smart object and apply a high pass filter with a blend mode of overlay. Use the colour adjustment layer into a selection and make this into a layer mask to apply the texture where needed.

The Patch Tool

  • The Patch Tool can be used to smooth the edges of uneven skin colour.( Ref 6:27. Ref 3:34). However it is destructive and  has a hard edge and is not liked by all retouchers.

Dodge & Burn

Videos to File


  • Portrait Pro.

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