Target specific colors to adjust their hue, saturation, and luminance, to create stunning photos in Lightroom for mobile.
Court of the Patriarchs Zion National Park

What you'll learn

Sometimes when you try to capture a moment, the colors in your photos are not nearly as vibrant as you remember them.

In this tutorial, learn how to use the Color Adjustment tool and Targeted Adjustment tool in Lightroom on mobile to adjust the hue, saturation, and luminance of specific colors to make your images beautiful, as shown in this before/after photo.

color adjustment before and after

Open a photo in Lightroom on your mobile device

Launch Lightroom on your mobile device.

Tap the Add Photos icon to add a photo from your camera roll, or choose a photo from your Lightroom albums.

Lightroom for mobile

Select the Color Adjustment tool

When viewing the thumbnails in All Photos or in an album, tap on a photo to edit it.

  1. Tap Color to open the Color Adjustments.
  2. Tap Mix to display the sliders for Hue, Saturation, and Luminance.

Note: If you don't see the adjustment tools, make sure the menu in the upper left corner is set to Edit.

Color Adjustment tool in Lightroom for mobile

Adjust the color mix sliders

The Color Mix sliders allow you to refine the hue, saturation, and luminance of specific colors.

Tap on a color dot to select the color you want to adjust, then use the three sliders for that color. Hue changes the character or "flavor" of the color. Saturation makes the color more or less intense; and Luminance adjusts the brightness of the color.

For example, to decrease the brightness of the washed out blues in the sky, tap on the blue circle, and move the Luminance slider to the left, which causes the blue sky to become darker in relation to the white clouds. If you move the Luminance slider for the blue to the right, you would increase the brightness of the blues in the photo, and the sky might blend in with the white clouds.

Note: The Hue, Saturation, Luminance examples of the flower, blue door and green Vespa, and the accompanying text, can stay as is.

Luminance in Lightroom for mobile
  • Hue changes the color. In this example, increasing the red hue to +75 results in a more orange color.  
  • Saturation changes the intensity of a color. In this example, increasing the saturation of blue to +100 results in a more intense blue color.
  • Luminance changes the brightness of a color. In this example, increasing the luminance of green to +50, results in a lighter green color.
hue saturation luminance Lightroom

Targeted Adjustment tool

When the Targeted Adjustment tool is active, it adjusts the specific color(s) sampled from an area where you have tapped, enabling you to adjust the hue, saturation, or luminance for the colors directly under your finger.

Adjusting the saturation of the cliffs can make them stand out more, enhancing their natural beauty. First, tap the Targeted Adjustment tool, then tap Saturation.

Target Adjustment tool in Lightroom for mobile

Now, drag vertically (or horizontally) on a color in the photo to increase or decrease saturation for that color.

The animated screen shot below shows tapping the Targeted Adjustment tool, then tapping on Saturation, and then dragging on an area in the rocks that has red and orange colors and sliding the sampled colors up to increase the saturation of reds and oranges throughout the photo. The most noticeable effect is in the cliffs.

Tap the Targeted Adjustment tool again to turn it off.

Note: The Targeted Adjustment tool is only available for iOS devices.

saturation adjustment in Lightroom for mobile

Review the changes

Press and hold the photo with one finger to see the before and after result of the adjustments. 

Experiment with the editing controls, and know you can always rework your edits or get back to your original photo with one tap using the Reset icon on the far right of the adjustment tools.

When you are done, tap the arrow in the top-left of your screen to return to All Photos, or the album view. Your edits will automatically sync to your Lightroom desktop app and to Lightroom on the web.

If you don’t already have Lightroom for desktop, download it now. You can take your photos even further with Lightroom Classic on the desktop or Photoshop with a free trial.

Lightroom for mobile

Contributor: Alexander Demyanenko

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