Vandelay Design may receive compensation from companies, products, and services covered on our site. For more details, please refer to our Disclosure page.

In the graphic design and photography fields, Photoshop Actions are one of the most convenient and essential resources at your disposal.  With just a single click, you can transform your images into just what you wanted. 

A Photoshop Action is a series of steps that are recorded that allow you to simply click a button to have all those steps performed automatically and quickly.  Actions can be used for a lot of different purposes, including photo editing. There are actions that will give your photos a specific look or type of effect.

We’ve spent a lot of time searching the depths of photography and design on the web to provide you with a list of 50 free Photoshop Actions that will not only save you time but also allow you to get beautiful effects for your photos.  In this collection, you’ll find:

  • Vintage Effects
  • Black and White Effects
  • HDR Effects
  • Color Enhancing Effects
  • And much more

Some of these are individual actions and others are sets that include multiple actions. These actions have been created by various designers and photographers and have been made available for free download.

Keep in mind that while Photoshop actions and Lightroom presets can be extremely useful and helpful, the results will vary from one photo to the next. Not every photo will look great with every action. Experiment with them and you’ll get a good feel for which actions work best with certain types of photos.

Free Photoshop Actions

Film-Inspired Photoshop Action

Want to give your digital photos a look that resembles film photography? It’s easy with the help of this free action.

Film-Inspired PS ActionFilm-Inspired PS Action

Old Film Photoshop Action

Here is another resource for film photography lovers. This one gives your photos and aged look as well.

Old Film Photoshop ActionOld Film Photoshop Action

Matte Photoshop Action

Subtle matte effects can be very effective with portraits and other types of photos. Thanks to this downloadable resource, getting a nice matte look is easier than ever.

Matte Photoshop ActionMatte Photoshop Action

Matte Photoshop Action

Here is another matte action that you’re sure to appreciate. This one was created especially for landscapes and nature photos (although, of course, it will work with other types of photos as well).

Film Photoshop Action

This action provides you some additional variety if you’re looking to give your photos a nice film look.

Film Photoshop ActionFilm Photoshop Action

Faded Film Photoshop Action

Fade the colors of your photos while applying a film look. This one has a slight vintage feel to it.

Faded Film Photoshop ActionFaded Film Photoshop Action

Film Actions

This action pack includes a few varieties that will add the film look to your photos.

Film ActionsFilm Actions

Cross Processed Photoshop Action

Want to add a twist to the film look? Cross processing was originally done in the darkroom with chemicals but can now be replicated in Photoshop. This one will give you a somewhat subtle effect, but it looks great with a lot of photos.

Cross ProcessedCross Processed

Desaturated Cross Processed Photoshop Action

This one also applies a cross processed effect, but desaturates the colors of your photo at the same time.

Desaturated Cross Processed Photoshop ActionDesaturated Cross Processed Photoshop Action

Faded Cross Process Action

Fade the colors and apply a fairly strong cross processing effect with the help of this free Photoshop action.

Faded Cross Process ActionFaded Cross Process Action

Retro Cross Photoshop Action

Cross processing effects are also a great way to give photos a vintage or retro feel. This one was created specifically for that purpose.

Retro Cross Photoshop ActionRetro Cross Photoshop Action

Vintage Dream Photoshop Action

This is a strong vintage look that gives your photos an orangey glow. It won’t be perfect for every photo, but with the right photo it looks great.

Vintage DreamVintage Dream

Vintage Photoshop Action

Quickly and easily give the colors of your photo a vintage treatment with the help of this action.

Vintage ActionVintage Action

Subtle Vintage Photoshop Actions

These actions give your photos a vintage feel, but with somewhat subtle effects.

Subtle Vintage Photoshop ActionsSubtle Vintage Photoshop Actions

Vintage Photoshop Action

This vintage action looks great with a wide variety of photos, including some landscapes like the one shown below.

Vintage Photoshop ActionVintage Photoshop Action

Light Vintage Photoshop Action

Are regular vintage effects too strong for your taste? This one is much lighter and more subtle.

Light VintageLight Vintage

Faded Photoshop Action

Give your photos a beautiful faded color look with just a click of the mouse.


Vintage Matte Action

This free action combines the matte look with a vintage effect. It gives your photos an aged film type of look.

Vintage Matte ActionVintage Matte Action

Glory Days Photoshop Action

This vintage action, called Glory Days, is one of our favorites. It works well with a lot of photos and is a little more subtle rather than overpowering.

Glory Days Photoshop ActionGlory Days Photoshop Action

Violet Light Leak Photoshop Action

Add a soft light leak with a violent tint to the side of your photos. It works well with outdoor photos of all kinds.

Violet Light Leak Photoshop ActionViolet Light Leak Photoshop Action

Vintage Light Leak Photoshop Action

This is another light leak action, but with more of a vintage look. Instead of simply adding the light leak, it also applies a vintage effect to the entire photo.

Vintage Light Leak Photoshop ActionVintage Light Leak Photoshop Action

Vintage Light Leak Action

Here is another option to give you a similar look to the previous action, but with some variety.

Vintage Light Leak Photoshop ActionVintage Light Leak Photoshop Action

Color Pop Photoshop Action

Are the colors in your photo dull or boring? If so, it’s not a problem. With just a click of the mouse, you can bring colors to life and improve your photo instantly.

Color Pop Photoshop ActionColor Pop Photoshop Action

Color Pop Photoshop Action

This is another color pop action, this one being created with landscape and nature photos in mind.

Color PopColor Pop

Boldness Photoshop Action

Add some color, contrast, and even sharpness to your photos. The effect may be too strong from some photos, but if the colors were too dull to begin with, this effect can help.

Boldness Photoshop ActionBoldness Photoshop Action

HDR Action

Do you love the HDR look? With the help of this action, you can replicate that look with any photo. The result is a bold photo with a high dynamic range. (See more HDR Photoshop actions here.)

HDR Photoshop ActionHDR Photoshop Action

HDR Photoshop Action

Here is another option when you want an HDR look. It gives you a similar effect but you can try both and see which one works best with your photo.

HDR Photoshop ActionHDR Photoshop Action

Bold Black & White Photoshop Action

Easily convert any color into a bold black & white with high contrast and deep, rich blacks.

Bold B&WBold B&W

High Contrast Black & White Photoshop Action

Contrast will play a large roll in determining the look of your black and white photos. This effect makes use of very high contrast to make your images pop.

High Contrast B&WHigh Contrast B&W

Classic Black & White Photoshop Action

The matte effect created here is used to give a black & white conversion and aged or vintage feel. Start with a color photo and convert it to this classic black & white with just a click of the mouse.

Bold Black & White Photoshop Action

If you want black & white photos that will be noticed, this bold approach is certainly worth trying. It adds intensity to create something special rather than a boring b&w conversion.

Bold Black & White Photoshop ActionBold Black & White Photoshop Action

Aged Black & White Action

Here is another action that gives you black & whites a slight vintage feel.

Aged Black & White Photoshop ActionAged Black & White Photoshop Action

Silver Photoshop Action

Just the right balance will give your photos a nice silver look when they’re converted to black & white.

Silver Photoshop ActionSilver Photoshop Action


This free action applies a cool, intense look and feel to your photos. It can be very effective in the right situation and is certainly worth trying on your own images.


Cold Nightmare

This intense and dark effect will help to create photos that stand out.

Cold Nightmare Photoshop ActionCold Nightmare Photoshop Action

Intensify Photoshop Action

Intensify will desaturate the colors and sharpen the details of your photos.

Intensify Photoshop ActionIntensify Photoshop Action

Sunset Photoshop Action

Give your outdoor photos a sunset look very easily. This also works well with photos that were taken at or around sunset but lack the pop you’re after.

Sunset Photoshop ActionSunset Photoshop Action

Blue Evening

Here is a really fun action that you need to try. It gives you photos a blue tint. It won’t work well with every single photo, but it can look great with the right image.

Blue EveningBlue Evening

Nightmare Photoshop Action

This dark action adds a lot of intensity and some mood to your photos. It’s another one that you need to try for yourself.

Nightmare Photoshop ActionNightmare Photoshop Action

Lomo Photoshop Action

Give your photos a look was inspired by vintage toy cameras. Altered colors and soft edges, it’s an ideal vintage option to add to your arsenal.

Lomo Photoshop ActionLomo Photoshop Action

Blue Action

Cool down the colors of your photos with the help of this free action.

Blue ActionBlue Action


This one adds some contrast and coolness that can make your photos little more bold.


Burgundy Wine Matte Photoshop Action

Add a soft burgundy color effect to your photos very easily. It works best with outdoor photos taken in natural light, including portraits.

Burgundy Wine Matte Photoshop ActionBurgundy Wine Matte Photoshop Action

Cinema Action

Easily give your photos a strong vintage feel with just a click of the mouse.

Cinema ActionCinema Action

Colors Actions

This pack gives you several different options for adjusting the colors of your photos.

Colors ActionsColors Actions

Express Eye Bright Photoshop Action

Eyes are key to effective portraits and this download helps to make the eyes in your photos pop.

Express Eye Bright Photoshop ActionExpress Eye Bright Photoshop Action

Summer Haze Photoshop Action

Add a soft colored haze effect to your photos very easily. It works best with outdoor shots captured in natural light.

Summer Haze Photoshop ActionSummer Haze Photoshop Action

Forest Actions

Edit your forest photos in a few different ways with these strong effects.

Forest ActionsForest Actions

Food Photoshop Actions

These effects have been created specifically with food photos in mind. If you’re a food blogger, you’ll love this download.

Baby Miracle Photoshop Action

Edit and improve your newborn photos with the help of this action.

Baby Miracle Photoshop ActionBaby Miracle Photoshop Action

What Are Photoshop Actions?

Photoshop actions are essentially scripts that carryout specific steps in Photoshop automatically. You can use actions to give your photos a certain type of effect or look, thanks to the many actions that are available for download.

Are Photoshop Actions Free?

Some actions, like the ones showcased here, are available for free download. Others can be purchased. Many of the websites that provide free actions also sell some premium options if you’re interested in trying them.

How Do I Install Photoshop Actions

You’ll download an .atn file. Make sure that Photoshop is open, and then double click on the .atn file that you’ve downloaded. Photoshop will automatically install it for you.

How Do I Use a Photoshop Action

Open the photo that you want to use it with, and go to Window > Actions to open up the palette. Then, click the folder to open the action pack, highlight the one you want to apply, and click the play button to run it.

For more free Photoshop resources, please see:

Similar Posts