Most Important Photoshop Tools

Photoshop Tools are the assets that you can use to edit, modify anything you need on images. You can make simple changes to an amazing transformation visually on any raster photographs. Specifically, we are mentioning ‘Raster’ images because you can apply the tools of Photoshop to this kind. If you want to know more about Raster image and Vector image, you can read, “8 File formats for high-quality image”. We will learn about the tools that are mostly used. So, let’s go for the Most Important Adobe Photoshop Tools that you should know.

Adobe Photoshop Tools

Adobe Photoshop is an amazing software to manipulate photos just in any way you can think of. Getting started with Photoshop can be cumbersome if you don’t know the basics of Photoshop. The tools that can be useful to turn an ordinary image into a masterpiece are the things to photoshop. In today’s presentation, I will give you a brief on the Photoshop tools and some helpful topics we have. We have another blog that contains new features for this version. Go for, “Top 10 Photoshop CS6 Features” if you are interested in learning about them.

adobe photoshop tools
The most important photoshop tools Layout.

Image source:

Note: I am using Photoshop CS6 for this blog, but you can use Photoshop CS3 or higher versions. Previous versions may not contain all the tools we are about to discuss here.

Basic Photoshop Selection tools

Talking about selection tools, it is one of the mandatory sections in Photoshop. Any editing in a specific area or replication, the addition you need, the selection is a must. You will have a better idea during your work in action. We have a complete blog on isolating a subject from the background by selection tools. So, check out, “How to do Photo Cut Out easily in Photoshop” to know more. Photoshop cs6 tools are easy and effective to make selections. Here, we will introduce you to the tools only.

  • Move tool
  • Marquee Tools
  • Lasso Tools
  • Magic Wand Tools
  • Crop Tool

Move tool

Photoshop tools definition starts with this one. The Move tool is not directly a selection tool but has great intimacy with them. You can click and drag any image in a project with this one. Use the mouse to do the operation easily. Use keyboard key ‘V’ to choose the tool as a shortcut. Or, you can use the mouse and click on the tool from the photoshop tools panel.

move tool
Photoshop Move tool and use

Marquee Tools:

Tools that we use with basic shapes are called Marquee tools. You can use them when you have a subject or any specific part of an image matching this. The tools are four in number. See below for details about them.

marquee tools (Tools in Photoshop)
Photoshop Marquee Tools Layout.

1. Rectangular Tool

The Rectangular tool we use to select a square or rectangular area of a photo. To maintain the aspect ratio in the selection press and hold the Shift key for both Win and MAC. Click and drag from one end and release when you have the area you want to mark.

2. Elliptical

It’s used for circular and oval selections. Press and hold the Shift key for both Win and MAC to maintain the aspect ratio as above.

3. Single Raw

We use the Single Raw Marquee tool to select a single row of an image pixel.

4. Single Column

This Marquee tool you can use to select a single column of an image pixel.

Lasso Tools

lasso tools
Photoshop Lasso Tools Layout.

1. lasso Tool

You can use the Lasso Tool to create irregularly shaped selections. It includes the lasso for automatic selections.

2. Polygonal

It’s used to make selections by drawing a series of strength lines to make a polygonal shape.

3. Magnetic

In this tool, you click within the image to start or creating your selection and drag the mouse to create a selection path

Magic Wand Tools

magic wand tools (Tools in Photoshop)
Photoshop Magic Wand Tools Layout.

The Magic Wand tool lets you select a consistently colored area without having to trace its outline. You specify the color range or tolerance, for the magic wand tool’s selection.

Crop Tool

crop tool
Photoshop Crop Tool layout.

Crop Tool as the name suggests used to crop images. Crop the whole image and manage the visible area with this one. You can activate the Crop tool by pressing (C) on the keyboard or see the image below for the crop tool icon.

Image Editing tools

photoshop tools and functions Some of the broadly used  Photoshop Tools are:-

  • Spot Healing Brush Tool (J)
  • Pen Tool (P)
  • Brush Tool (B)
  • Clone Stamp Tool (S)
  • Eraser Tool (E)
  • Blur Tool (R)
  • History Brush Tool (H)
  • Horizontal Type Tool (T)
  • Rectangle Tool (U)
  • Eyedropper Tool (I)
  • Zoom Tool (Z)
  • Slice Tool (K)

Spot Healing Brush Tool

spot healing brush tool (Tools in Photoshop)
Most important photoshop Image Editing tools

Removing spots or stains from fabric is easy with detergent or chemicals. But, what would you do when it comes to removing sports from an image. Photoshop CS6 comes with the Spot Healing Brush Tool as a rescue. Well, this was available in some previous versions as well. Use the keyboard key ‘J’ to select the tool. The operation is pretty simple. Just brush over the impure areas and see the changes. No need to take a sample from nearby clean areas. Photoshop will automatically do this for you and you will have satisfactory results instantly.

Pen Tool (P)

pen tool
Master the Pen Tool

The Pen tool is a legendary tool in the Photoshop toolbar. You can create a work path and make a selection for further activities. The best part is, you can make the path as you wish. Creating straight lines are very simple. Click once to start the path and go for the next one. You will see a straight line. Click and drag a bit if you want to draw a curved line. We have a complete guide on the Photoshop Pen tool. So, check our tutorial, “Understanding and Master the Pen Tool in Photoshop”.

Brush Tool (B)

brush tool (Tools in Photoshop)
Photoshop Brush Tool

Like the Pen tool, the Brush tool is also quite remarkable. You can draw, use color, hide/unhide areas in the mask, or use it with multiple tools. The shortcut to selecting the tool is ‘B’. you can make the brush bigger or smaller. Also, you can make it hard or soft whenever you need to. Press and hold Alt/Option for Win/MAC then click and move the left mouse button and see the changes by yourself.

Clone Stamp Tool (S)

clone stamp tool
Photoshop Clone Stamp Tool

Have you heard of cloning? Creating a copy of an existing creature with the DNA is cloning. The Clone Stamp tool follows a similar method for photo editing. Here, you cannot create a creature but you can replicate an area from one place to another in photos. Mastering the Clone Stamp Tool allows you to do advanced image retouching and manipulation. Use keyboard shortcut ‘S’ to select the tool. Take a sample by pressing Alt/Option for Win/MAC and click at the point. Release Alt/Option and brush over the area where you want to apply. As simple as that.

Eraser Tool (E)

eraser tool (Tools in Photoshop)
Photoshop Eraser Tool

You need to use the Eraser tool when it comes to vanishing something from the whole image. Working on a layer, the tool works as making an area transparent. Press ‘E’ to select the tool then select the layer where you need to use it. Brust over the area and you will see the below layer is becoming visible. You can also control the flow while erasing. The Control panel is above the work window, just below the menu bar.

Blur Tool (R)

Photoshop Blur Tools
Photoshop Blur Tools

Photoshop Blur tool is something that we use artificial blur. Definitely, the Blur tool is cool. It makes things blurry. Click and drag over the image or any specific section to make things blurry. The more you click and drag, the more blur you get. Use keyboard command ‘R’ to select the tool. Sometimes you can make a DSLR effect on a photograph if you have the subject in a different layer.

History Brush Tool (H)

history brush toool (Tools in Photoshop)
Photoshop History Brush Tool

This tool works just like the Brush Tool except for the information that it paints with is from the original state of your image. If you go Window>History, you can see the History Palette. The History Brush tool paints with the information from whatever History state is selected.

Rectangle Tool (U)

rectangle tool
Photoshop Rectangle Tool and use.

By default, it draws a Shape Layer in the form of a rectangle. And, fills up the foreground color according to your selection. You can use this tool to create squares as well. Also, you can access some more shapes in this group. Activate the Rectangular tool by pressing ‘U’ for both Window and MAC operating systems. Moreover, you can modify the fill from the options above the work window if you need.

Eyedropper Tool (I)

eyedropper tool (Tools in Photoshop)
Photoshop Eyedropper Tool and use

The Eyedropper Tool is the key to pick a color that you will get in the toolbar in photoshop. The tool works by changing your foreground color to whatever color you click on. Holding the [Alt] key will change your background color. You will see the foreground and background color options in the lower portion of the toolbar.

Zoom Tool (Z)

zoom tool
Photoshop Zoom Tool

The Zoom Tool you can use to magnify the image you are working with. Well, it is very important to see the details during editing. As raster images are made of pixels, working perfection depends on proper observation of the image. Use the keyboard key ‘Z’ for both Win or MAC to select the tool. Click on the image to enlarge as many times as you need. Press and hold Alt/Option for Win/MAC and you will see the ‘-’ (Minus) sign in the cursor. Then click to zoom out when you need to.

Slice Tool (K)

slice tool (Tools in Photoshop)
Photoshop Slice Tool and use

Need to divide an image and save them separately, you need to use the Slice Tool. You can have the tool by using the keyboard key ‘K’ for both Windows and MAC. The other way is, click and hold on to the Crop tool in the toolbar until you have other options. Now, release the click and click on the Slice Tool. You can use this amazing tool to mark and separate multiple areas from an image. Just click and drag an area that you want to slice, release when you are satisfied. Right-click on the selected area to edit information for the selection. You can rename, add links, and do more here. Go to File > Save for web, click save, and choose the location. You will have the images sliced according to your selection.


Photoshop CS6 is a heavily loaded photo editing software you can use for your image manipulation. All the tools and options are hard to explain in a few words. So, we tried to mention a list of photoshop tools here. Though some other tools are close to these that we mentioned here. We will come again with them from time to time. However, the uses of the tools need some knowledge and practice. And, if you are a beginner, we believe this content will be of your help. Try them and deliver with expertise with the skill you have within.


What is the most used tool in Photoshop?

Ans: The most used tool in Photoshop refers to the necessity of editing and image category. Commonly the Pen tool, Brush tool, Move tool, Horizontal Type tool, etc. are important.

What are the tools used in Photoshop?

Ans: Throughout the content, we tried to discuss some important tools of Photoshop. Some more tools you may find within groups. Also, you will find more advanced tools and options in the latest versions.

How do I use all tools in Photoshop?

Ans: The tools in Photoshop are for different purposes. Sometimes several tools do similar functions and sometimes one tool can do many. So, the use of the tools is completely dependent on requirements.

What can I use instead of Photoshop?

Ans: A number of photo editing programs are available for you. Gimp is the closest to Photoshop. But, if you want a convenient program we suggest Photoshop only.

How do I find tools in Photoshop 2020?

Ans: Go to the menu bar Window>Tools to make visible the toolbar in Photoshop 2020. Generally, the tools are located at the left border of the window by default. If you lost it by chance, follow the location and you can have it back.