When you really want super photos of yourself

Look for the SuperPhoto app icon.
Look for the SuperPhoto app icon.

SuperPhoto app
Cost: Free ($5.99 to unlock all effects)
Seller: Moonlighting
Devices: iOS and Android
Rating: E for Everyone

Try it for free first. Amazing effects. Great features.
It’ll do what it can with your image, but it’s not a miracle worker.

First impressions

There’s no denying that this has been the decade of the selfie. Front facing cameras get a lot of love from partygoers, celebrity seekers and social media darlings. Who would have thought that a selfie stick would be a thing? And then there’s that song … “but first, let me take a selfie!”

The SuperPhoto app by Moonlighting allows you to download it for free to try it out, and once you get inevitably hooked, you can buy groups of filters or go the whole hog for $5.99. With no risk to start with, I had to give it a whirl. Some of my recent photos have run the gamut from fairly attractive to Auntie Walrus, so this could be my savior.
I’m ready for my close-up, Mr. DeMille!

How it works

This app offers a dizzying array of photo manipulation options. It’s not too difficult to figure out how it works, but you could spend days exploring the myriad effects, filters, shadows and shading that SuperPhoto has in its bag of tricks.

You can start off by trying the free effects, of which there are 262. Yep – 262! You may think that you’ll never need more than those, but trust me, you’ll be forking out the very reasonable money required to unlock the additional “Premium” 1,389 effects pretty soon after. You won’t be able to help yourself.

I always knew I was a star ...
I always knew I was a star …

All the options are listed on the left hand side, and on the right there are pictures that give you an example of how your photo will look with each different effect.

I could not possibly list them all here, but how are these for starters: Painting, Stroke Sketch, Cartoonize, Circles, VHS, Wavy Sketch, Stained Glass, Sparkify, Selective Blur … I could go on and on and use up my entire word count just on the impressive list of effects.

In the left hand menu, there are headings of “Effects,” “Decorations,” “Textures,” and “Explore,” under which there are further subheadings such as “Filters,” “3-D,” “Patterns,” and “Brushes.” Are you getting all of this? Don’t worry, there’s more.

Once you choose the effect you want to try, you’ll be asked if you want to use an existing photo or take one with your device’s camera. Either way, that image will be transformed by the effect you want, with toggles on the right to fine tune it. You can set the output size, and then depending on the nature of the effect, adjust other settings.

I love the Hard Blur feature. Look at that baby smooth skin.
I love the Hard Blur feature. Look at that baby smooth skin.

For example, if you choose “Painting,” you can increase or decrease the level of intensity, saturation, burn and brightness. Like what you see as the end result? Then set it as a favorite.

Beyond the filters that allow you to change the “texture” of your images, SuperPhoto opens up a whole new world of crazy

ways to stretch, multiply, distort and otherwise completely reinvent them. And if you tap different effects one after the next, the app will default to the same picture so you don’t have to keep choosing one each time … unless you want to.
When you finally reach the desired look, simply tap on the check mark at the top right of the screen and you’ll be given the chance to save it, share it through the usual social media channels, look at related effects and even submit it to “Users’ Creations.”

When I tried it

I was instantly taken with the SuperPhoto app. Maybe it’s because the raw photos of my countenance leave something to be desired, or perhaps I just love messing around with lots of different effects.

Lotsa circles!
Lotsa circles!

I tried about three free options before I bought the full package. At $5.99, this was a steal! I started off with the “Hard Blur” effect, which softened any craggy lines in my face and gave me a smooth visage, and then jumped over to “Stained Glass,” which took me completely in the opposite direction. I didn’t recognize the image staring back at me.

The “Stroke Sketch” effect made it look like there were worms crawling over my face … no thank you very much … so I went to “Softening and Fade Out” which presented a much more attractive picture.

I played with it for some time and then went off to deal with other more pressing things in my life, but a few days later I was back to try some other effects and familiarize myself with the advanced settings to see what they could offer. It was all about finding the most beautiful me possible.

Final thoughts

The SuperPhoto app is just that – super! It is a fantastic value with endless effects and features. I guarantee that you’ll be spending hours playing with it and will be telling others about it when you’re not posting your own creations all over the place. Now, smile for the camera!