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Adobe Lightroom’s latest AI-powered feature is chin-scratchingly specific

Adobe Lightroom’s latest AI-powered feature is chin-scratchingly specific


New automatic masking categories allow users to easily darken beard hair or enhance the texture of clothing.

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A side-by-side image comparison of a bearded man. A close-up shot on the left displays the man’s beard with an automatically generated mask applied in Adobe Lightroom.
Image: Adobe

Adobe’s latest Lightroom features are designed to make photo editing more accessible to people without professional experience — no matter how specific the task. The company has expanded the AI masking categories for its “Select People” tool to include new options that automatically select a subject’s clothing and facial hair, allowing users to quickly make adjustments to their color and texture.

The update also includes three additional Adaptive Presets for portraits — Darken Beard, Polished Portrait, and Enhance Clothing — allowing users to make predetermined adjustments with a single click. Darken Beard is the most specific, its sole purpose being to make facial hair appear darker so that it stands out more. Meanwhile, Polished Portrait can quickly smooth a subject’s skin while refining their facial features and enhancing lighting within the shot, and Enhance Clothing optimizes the appearance of outfits by increasing their contrast, saturation, and texture.

A before and after comparison image depicting a bearded man. The untouched shot can be seen on the left, while the right has had Lightrooms new Polished Portrait and Darken Beard presets applied.
A before and after comparison of Adobe Lightroom’s new Polished Portrait and Darken Beard Adaptive Presets.
Image: Adobe

The Darken Beard feature here feels incredibly focused, but Adobe has previously released similarly specific presets for Lightroom — options already exist to automatically whiten teeth, darken eyebrows, and adjust hair texture. All of these presets are designed to help Adobe Lightroom compete against more novice-friendly services like beauty filter apps that enable users to easily adjust their appearance. Other creative suites like Canva have also started releasing user-friendly photo editing tools that similarly automate technically complex or labor-intensive tasks, which risk cutting into Adobe’s market share.

Lightroom’s new AI Mask categories are rolling out across Mac, Windows, Lightroom Classic, and Adobe Camera Raw. The three new Adaptive Presets follow suit and are additionally available on iOS, Android, and Lightroom on web.

Adobe’s latest Lightroom update also includes a few other features of note. A new DeNoise tool will remove the grainy “digital noise” that sometimes occurs when images are taken in low-light conditions. Since DeNoise is only initially available for RAW files, you can’t use it to clean up any old image yet, but Adobe has said that support for additional file types is “coming soon.”

Before and after images showing the capabilities of Adobe Lightroom’s DeNoise feature.
DeNoise can remove that grainy, static-like interference seen on images taken in poor lighting.
Image: Adobe

The company has additionally announced that its Content Credentials feature is now available in Lightroom on Mac, Windows, and via Adobe Camera Raw as a tech preview — Adobe’s term for post-beta features rolled out with limited capabilities. Content Credentials allows creators to authenticate their work by attaching digital attribution data to images before sharing them online. The feature was first introduced in 2021 for Adobe Photoshop as a means to validate NFTs.