Create with Photoshop Actions

Welcome to our Photoshop Actions hub where you can discover how to enhance your photographs or create a work of art with Photoshop Actions. On this page, you can learn about Photoshop Actions, including what they are, why you should use Photoshop Actions, and how to export them to Photoshop. You’ll also find popular Actions, as well as Photoshop Actions tutorials.  

If you need a little inspiration to get started, Envato Elements has thousands of great Photoshop Actions available. Browse our library and experiment with as many actions as you like, with unlimited downloads.

What Are Photoshop Actions?

Photoshop Actions are a series of recorded steps that create a particular effect or style when played back, meaning they’re perfect for both subtle retouching, and more artistic photo editing.

Actions are typically non-destructive, which means you can work on your image without the fear of editing and saving over it. They’re into layers which means you can see how certain effects are created and learn from them, and you can switch off layers to reduce the result of a particular part of the edit.

When you use photography in design, you usually want to make adjustments to the colors, contrast, and sharpness. You may want to go even further and completely stylize the image to make it unique. Photoshop Actions are a quick, creative, and effective way to transform your photographs into art.

Benefits of Photoshop Actions

Save time

Edit photos with recorded steps that can be replayed in Photoshop. Photoshop actions make editing photos easier and faster.

Professional results

Photoshop actions are created by experts to give your project a professional finish, without the time and effort.

Create unique images

Actions can be a great source of creative inspiration. Access unique effects and customize them to create an original project.

Integrate professional techniques

Use the Actions Panel to apply professional techniques no matter your skill level and learn along the way. 

Greater consistency

Actions take the guesswork out of editing and can be repeated, ensuring each photo has the same adjustments and effects.

Make editing fun

Transform photos with simple integrated steps. Mix it up, get creative or stylize your images and create something unique.

Who Uses Photoshop Actions?

Photoshop Actions are the perfect tool for intermediate, professional, and beginner editors.

Photoshop Actions level up photo design and streamline the editing process—the best part is anyone can use them. If you’re an amateur editor wanting to learn new skills and develop better quality photos, Photoshop actions take the guesswork out. Even professionals use Actions to keep their photos consistent and speed up the editing process. 

Actions allow content creators and influencers can improve their photos in minutes instead of hours, plus the large selection available allows anyone to experiment with different styles and try new things. Professional designers and artists use actions to create quality photographs for their clients and personal projects. Businesses and brands build consistent and reputable content with actions’ eye-catching effects and trending designs.

Trending Photoshop Actions

Create amazing effects in a few simple steps, with our favorite trending Photoshop Actions.

Transform your photos into impressive watercolor paintings with this artistic action. There’s also a video tutorial included.

Just color over your subject and play the Fury 3 Action to get a cool, bright effect that really packs a punch. 

Create a double exposure by blending together two photos quickly and easily with this action. Then add a color tone or gradient effect.

Edit your photographs with elements like vibrant colors and unusual shapes. Geometric filters add a nostalgic effect to any project. 

Achieve a vintage look without the effort of developing film. Use lo-fi photo actions to create striking effects in just a few clicks.

This cool liquid metallic effect will help you stand out and tell a story. Paint your subject in hyper-realistic gold for an impressive result.

How To Use Photoshop

While it’s more beneficial to you as a creative to know how to create effects yourself, Photoshop actions are still a great option. Whether it’s to make a process more efficient, to learn from and customize effects, or simply just to inspire and spark creativity, actions are a stepping stone to achieve unique results.

Getting to know how to use a piece of software like Adobe Photoshop can be a real step up for your photography, art, and design. And taking an online course like Adobe Photoshop For Beginners on Envato Tuts+ can help you learn some essential skills.

The free Photoshop course starts with the basics and gets you familiar with techniques like working with layers and combining images until you have all the core skills and confidence you need to achieve your design goals!

How To Use Photoshop Actions

Learning how to use Photoshop Actions is quite simple. Once you’ve downloaded and unzipped an action, simply load it into the Actions Panel in Photoshop and you’re good to go. Action creators usually put each part of the process into logical, labeled folders, with named layers inside so you can see what’s what when you’re adjusting an effect. Turning the visibility of layers on and off is a great way to learn how an effect is created.

As actions work in different ways, it’s best to check the instructions that come with the download. It’s fun to test different actions to see the results, and you can even use more than one Photoshop Action on your work to build up effects.

Photoshop Action Tutorials

Whether you’re new to Photoshop or upskilling, there are plenty of tutorials available on Envato Tuts+.

Add a textural element to photos with this crystal effect action. Discover how to apply a color grade and 3D pattern in this guide.

Experiment with pixelation by following our easy how-to guide. Anyone looking to create a truly digital look will love this pixel effect.

Try this ultra-trendy funky fur text effect—don’t worry it’s faux! If you love a textural style that jumps off the page, check out our tutorial. 

Looking for something dreamy and textural? Why not try a cloud effect. This soft action is easy to use and creates a unique image. 

Experiment with contrast and color by using this light effect action. All you’ll need is a high-quality stock image and this tutorial.

Transform portraits into works of art, with this oil painting effect. This action adds layers of rich color and texture for an original finish.

Photoshop Action Collections

Take a page from our book, and check out the best Photoshop Actions for editing. 

Stay on-trend with the best vintage Actions. Explore retro effects that are easy to download and apply in Photoshop.

Cartoons can be a difficult art form to master, but Actions make applying animated styles easy. Explore our top 30 cartoon effects now.

Don’t recycle the same fonts. Make sure your project stands out—be inspired by this year’s top text effects, Actions, and styles.

Want to add drama, set the scene, or draw focus? Hone your creativity and apply expert effects with these pre-made light Actions. 

If you’re looking for inspiration, check out these creative Photoshop effects, available through an Envato Elements subscription. 

Photographers—enhance your editing skills and learn new techniques with our favorite actions on offer. Take a look at our guide now.

Photoshop Actions FAQs

The Actions panel is located in the Window menu at the very top of Photoshop. Click Window, then Actions, and the panel will appear. This allows you to record, play, edit, delete and load Photoshop Action files.

Yes. To export an Action, navigate to the Actions panel and select the Action you want to export. With that selected, navigate to the menu bar (the icon in the top right-hand corner of the Actions panel with four horizontal lines) and click Save Actions from the dropdown. Choose a location on your computer to store your Actions and click Save.

Adding Actions to Photoshop is quick and easy. First, you’ll need to save your Actions to an easy-to-find location on your computer. Then, open Photoshop, click Window in the main toolbar, and select Actions from the dropdown menu.

In the top right-hand corner, you’ll see a small icon made up of four horizontal lines—click here and select Load Actions from the dropdown. Select your Actions from the folder on your computer and click Open. Your Actions will load into the Actions panel and be ready for use in Photoshop.

More Photoshop Actions

Discover a huge range of Photoshop Actions, including actions themed for holidays like Halloween and Christmas, cool effects like neon or fire, and more subtle options like rich, deep coloring and monochrome looks.

We all love to bag a bargain, and what’s better than a freebie? If you’re starting out with actions, check out these 50 Best Free Photoshop Actions to find creative transformations available in a single click. 


If you’d like some more inspiration for what you might like to create, check out these amazing Photoshop Actions, all with before and after images so you can instantly see how they look.

Types of Photoshop Actions

Not sure where to start? Here are a few of our favorite Photoshop Action categories for inspiration.

Transform your photographs into realistic watercolor paintings with the click of a button. There are hundreds of watercolor Actions to discover on Envato Elements.

Add impact to your images with neon Photoshop Actions. From text effects to neon tubes, and cyberpunk colors, there’s an effect for every photography project.

Ready to combine your love of comic books with your passion for photography? Cartoon Photoshop Actions provide the very best of both worlds!

Say it in style with eye-catching text effects. Whether you’re creating a social post, magazine, flyer, or something else, there’s an effect for every project.

Complete retro-themed projects with ease. Faded colors, spots, grain, and vignettes all make an appearance in our library of retro Photoshop Actions.

Add a cinematic look to your next creative project. Explore our collection of professional glitch effects, and transform your photos in a single click.

Used With Photoshop Actions

Download digital assets and design tools to enhance your next project in Adobe Photoshop.

Draw intricate details in just one stroke with Photoshop brushes. Browse hundreds of pre-made brushes and use the different styles to elevate your image design or digital art. 

Envato Elements subscribers can access a large bank of royalty-free images, with unlimited downloads. Try mixing stock photos with original images and applying actions to experiment with effects.

Step outside the ordinary and add vibrance to your photography with custom Photoshop palettes. From bold swatches to subtle color schemes, there’s a palette for every project.

Photoshop Action Alternatives

Don’t use Adobe Photoshop for editing? No sweat, here are some other options.

Browse compatible Lightroom actions with your Envato Elements subscription. Boost your design skills and save time, with hundreds of assets to choose from.

Text effects are a great alternative to Photoshop Actions. With hundreds of engaging graphics on offer, there’s one to suit any creator and project.

Any graphic design or illustration project can be enhanced by our selection of Illustrator presets. Browse the flexible and dynamic options on offer now.

Why Creators Love Envato Elements

“The creative artists on Elements making Photoshop Actions and LUTS make my photography workflow much easier and allow my work to stand out from the crowd.”

Scott, Gemneye Technologies

“For inspiration, Envato Elements can’t be beat. This applies to Photoshop Actions, presentation templates, graphics, and more. Brilliant work all around. Highly recommend it to other artists and designers.”

William, Representational/Figurative Artist

“There are so many stock photos and Photoshop Actions to use, which are hugely helpful for all of my projects.”

ElspethRoseDesign, Designer

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