How To Fix Red Eye In Adobe Lightroom

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Most modern cameras are capable of dealing with red eye automatically. But sometimes certain images are in the wrong light and you find yourself in a situation where a nasty red eye has appeared. It can completely take you out of an image and leave you with an unsightly focal point.

If you are one of the 185,000 professional photographers in the US, you know that red eye is a constant worry. Through using Adobe Lightroom in the right way, you can make red eye a thing of the past. This tutorial is going to show you the process you have to go through to get rid of red eye

Preparing the Fix

To begin with, you need to open your desired image in Lightroom. At this stage, you should avoid making any other changes. In the past, photographers have edited their images first before dealing with red eye. The changes they have made have made the red eye so pronounced that it became difficult to remove it in its entirety later.

The only solution if you have already done this is to start all over again.

Step 1 – The Develop Module

The Develop module contains lots of tools that you can use for performing edits on your images. These tend to be for the more basic touch-ups. To get to this module, click on the Develop section at the top of the screen. It should be next to your library.


Once you have selected it, you’ll find lots of tools that replace all the previous windows running down the side of the screen.

Step 2 – Finding the Red Eye Tool

At this point, you are likely becoming overwhelmed by the sheer number of tools on offer to you. For a lot of beginners, they have a hard time negotiating this section. To find it, look for the photo and you should find a circle with a red dot inside. It should be at the center of the ribbon.

If you are struggling to decipher the various icons, just hover your mouse cursor over each tool and a little box will come up with an explanation about what each tool is and does.


Step 3 – Zooming and Using

To make sure that you don’t inadvertently make additional changes to your image, you should zoom in on the afflicted area. Zoom in and then to get a better look you can hold down the spacebar and drag the mouse to pan the image in the best direction.

Since you have already selected the red eye tool, all you need to do is click and drag. A box will appear and you should drag this box around the eye. Try not to take in other parts of the image or it could cause some unexpected changes to happen.

This is a process that you will have to repeat on all the affected areas of your photo.

Step 4 – Adjusting to Perfection

The settings that come with Lightroom with the red eye correction tool are fairly scant, but you don’t need anything more than the pupil size and darkness tool. All you have to do is click inside the box and it will turn white to demonstrate that it’s selected.

Just drag the sliders at the bottom of the screen until you get the best possible results. It should be noted that the red eye correction tool may not work perfectly. You may run into a situation where you still have some of the redness remaining, or the eye looks unnatural.

Unfortunately, some images may require additional edits and even a round on Photoshop to actually get them right.

What is the Best Way to Avoid Red Eye?

Red eye is easily solved by avoiding it in the first place. The best way to avoid red eye is to purchase a camera that automatically comes with a red eye reduction feature. Most DSLR cameras and the majority of new smartphones come with this feature included.

Furthermore, these cameras produce images that you can see by browsing back over them from the device, so you can tell if your images have come good or not.

So what can you do about older photos, like the one below?


With Lightroom, you can easily scan old images into the program and work with them. The results you get with older photos may not be as good as you hoped, though. Usually, you have to combine these images with a run through Photoshop.

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