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How To Smooth Skin and Conceal Blemishes With Photoshop 5 and Up


Wouldn't we all like to look a few years younger or magically erase facial blemishes? Luckily we can turn back the clock digitally with the appropriately-named history brush in Photoshop 5 and up.
Difficulty: Average
Time Required: 10 minutes

Here's How:

  1. Open the image.
  2. Go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur.
  3. Set the radius just high enough to conceal any wrinkles or blemishes. Anything over 1 or 2 pixels is probably too much. Click OK to apply the gaussian blur.
  4. If the History palette is not visible, go to Window > Show History.
  5. Click the small arrow in the upper right corner of the history palette and choose New Snapshot. Name the snapshot "blurred".
  6. At the top of the History palette, click the first snapshot to revert back to the original image state. It should have the same name as your filename.
  7. Click in the square next to the blurred snapshot to set it as the source for the history brush.
  8. Create a new layer.
  9. Select the History brush.
  10. Choose a soft brush and paint on the new layer. You will be applying paint from the blurred snapshot source image.
  11. See the tips below to refine your touch-ups.
  12. When you are happy with the final image, choose Layer > Merge Down to combine the retouched layer with the original image. There's no going back after you merge the layers.


  1. Use the [bracket keys] to increase or decrease the brush size as you paint.
  2. Use the number keys to adjust the opacity of the brush as you paint (1=10%, 2=20%, and so on).
  3. Be careful not to paint over areas of fine detail. If you do, remember you are working on a new layer so you can use the eraser tool if you overdo an area.
  4. You can toggle the layer visibility on and off by clicking the eye in the layers palette. This will let you compare your touch-ups to the original as you work.
Related Video
Adobe Photoshop Patch Tool

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