How to Make Baby Skin Smooth in Photoshop

By Nicole Hamilton

Baby skin elicits admiration because of its softness. However, skin often appears rough in pictures because cameras enhance imperfections. Photoshop includes filters that can improve the texture of your baby's skin in photos. Using the "High Pass" filter in combination with a layer mask ensures that you preserve image details but still achieve the skin smoothing effect.

Step 1

Choose "File," choose "Open," and then select the picture you want to edit.

Step 2

Go to "Layer" and then to "Duplicate Layer." Click "OK" after entering a name for the new layer.

Step 3

Change the layer's blending mode to "Overlay" by clicking on the drop-down menu at the top of the "Layers" panel.

Step 4

Go to "Filter" and then to "Other," and choose "High Pass."

Step 5

Adjust the slider in the "High Pass" filter dialog box to increase or decrease the pixel radius. Choose a setting between six and ten pixels. Higher resolution images require higher settings. Click "OK" to apply the filter. Temporarily, the filter appears to sharpen the image.

Step 6

Select "Image," select "Adjustments," and then select "Invert" to change the filter's effect and cause it to soften the image.

Step 7

Click on "Opacity" for the layer in the "Layers" panel. Decrease the opacity by adjusting the slider. Continue reducing the opacity until some of the details come back into the image while the skin remains smooth. Your setting will probably be between 40 and 60 percent.

Step 8

Click the "Layer Mask" icon at the bottom of the "Layers" panel. Choose the icon that is a gray square with a white circle in the center.

Step 9

Choose the "Paintbrush" from the "Tools" panel.

Step 10

Go to the "Options" bar, and choose a soft round brush.

Step 11

Select black as the foreground color.

Step 12

Click and drag to paint over the image details, such as the eyes and mouth. This will hide those parts of the layer and remove the smoothing effect from those areas. Paint over the background and any other areas to restore image details. If you removed too much of the smoothing layer, switch the foreground color to white and paint with the brush to remove the layer mask.

Tips & Warnings

  • For a slightly different smoothing affect, you can use the "Surface Blur" in place of the "High Pass" filter. Follow all the steps, but omit step six because inverting the image is not necessary when using "Surface Blur."