Photopea is a versatile online photo editing tool that offers a wide array of functionalities similar to those found in traditional desktop software like Adobe Photoshop. One of the most useful features in Photopea is masking. Image Masking allows users to manipulate and adjust specific parts of an image without affecting the rest. This article will explore the essentials of masking in Photopea, including practical tips on how to use it effectively to enhance your photo editing skills.

What is Masking?

Masking is a technique used in image editing to hide or reveal parts of an image. It works by applying a mask—a layer that controls the transparency of the image layer it is attached to. Think of it as a stencil, where the covered areas are protected from being altered, while the exposed areas can be edited.

Types of Masks in Photopea

Photopea offers several types of masks, each suitable for different editing tasks:

  1. Layer Masks: Used to hide or reveal parts of a layer. Painting with black hides parts of the layer, while white reveals them.
  2. Clipping Masks: Allow you to use the content of one layer to define the visibility of another layer. Typically used to fit images into shapes or texts.
  3. Vector Masks: These are created with the pen tool or shape tools and are used to create sharp-edged shapes. They are resolution-independent, making them ideal for crisp edges.

How to Use Masks in Photopea

Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Open Your Image: Start by uploading your image to Photopea.
  2. Create a Layer Mask: Select the layer you want to mask and click on the “Add layer mask” icon at the bottom of the layers panel.
  3. Edit the Mask: Use the brush tool with black or white to paint on the mask. Black conceals and white reveals. Adjust brush hardness and size according to your needs.
  4. Refine the Mask: For a more precise mask, use the pen tool to create paths and then convert these paths to a vector mask.
  5. Apply Adjustments: Once your mask is ready, you can make adjustments to color, brightness, contrast, and other properties without affecting the unmasked parts of the image.

Tips for Effective Masking

  • Soft Brushes: Use soft brushes for a more natural transition between masked and unmasked areas.
  • Feather Edges: This makes the transition between masked and visible areas smoother.
  • Zoom In: For detailed work, zoom in to make precise adjustments.

Advanced Techniques

  • Adjustment Layers with Masks: Use masks on adjustment layers to apply color corrections to specific parts of your image.
  • Combining Masks: You can combine multiple masks for complex images to manage different elements separately.

FAQs on Photopea Masking

Q: Is masking in Photopea free to use?
A: Yes, Photopea is a free tool, and all of its features, including masking, are available without charge.

Q: Can I use Photopea for professional photo editing?
A: Absolutely! While Photopea runs in a browser and is less powerful than some desktop applications, it offers sufficient functionality for professional-grade photo editing.

Q: How do I save my work in Photopea?
A: You can save your work in various formats including PSD (Photoshop document) for further editing, or JPEG, PNG for sharing and web use.

Q: Does Photopea support layers and masks like Photoshop?
A: Yes, Photopea supports layers and masks very similarly to Photoshop, making it a great alternative for those familiar with Adobe’s products.


Masking in Photopea is a powerful feature that, once mastered, can significantly elevate the quality of your image editing. Whether you’re a professional looking for a cost-effective editing solution or a hobbyist wanting to experiment with advanced photo manipulation, Photopea offers a comprehensive set of tools to meet your needs. Start experimenting with different masks to see how they can transform your images!

This page was last edited on 4 July 2024, at 6:20 pm