How to Blur Images on a Mac

Blur Images On Mac Featured Image Coffee Table

Posting a picture online comes with risks. Your photo may contain sensitive info or a depiction of someone you don’t want others to see. The good news is that you can easily blur these images before posting them online. There are dozens of available Mac apps to accomplish this. Here, we take you through how you can easily and quickly blur images on your Mac using Skitch or the built-in Photos app.

Blur Images With Skitch

Part of the popular Evernote family of products, Skitch is a fantastic product that everyone should have on their computer.

  1. Launch Skitch if you already have it downloaded or grab it from the Mac App Store.
How Blur Images Mac Skitch App Store 1
  1. Drag and drop whatever JPG or PNG file you want to edit. Alternatively, click “File -> Open” and load the image in the app window.
How Blur Images Mac Skitch Blank
  1. Look on the left side of the app in the vertical toolbar for “Pixelate,” the second-to-last option. You can also identify it by its icon, which is blurry or pixelated.
How Blur Images Mac Skitch Arrow 1
  1. Use your mouse to drag the cursor around the area you wish to blur out. This works as a square or rectangle, and you can go back over each blurred area a few times just to be 100 percent sure nothing is visible.
How Blur Images Mac Skitch Drag
  1. Once you have blurred all of the areas of the photo you wish to hide, save your work one of two ways. The first way is to go to “File -> Export,” then choose where on your Mac’s hard drive you want to save the image.
  2. Alternatively, look at the bottom middle of the Skitch app, where a tab-like option lives. Click on this area and drag and drop it into a file folder, desktop, or anywhere you would like to save the image.
How Blur Images Mac Skitch Blur

Both ways work the same, so the image doesn’t appear differently if you use one method over the other.

With Skitch, it is really easy to blur images on the Mac. However, if downloading a separate app isn’t for you, there is another method that works with the Photos app, which is pre-installed on Macs.

Blur Images Using the Photos App

Editing a photo using the Photos app won’t “blur” an image in the same way the Skitch method will. Instead, using the edit features available through the Photos app, you can “Retouch” an image and remove any sensitive or unwanted info.

  1. Open the preinstalled Photos app on your Mac. The app should be in your deck or available through Mission Control by pressing F4 on your keyboard.
How Blur Images Mac Skitch Mission
  1. Locate a photo in the app that you want to edit or add a new photo by going to “File -> Import.” Alternatively, you can also drag and drop any photo from your hard drive directly into the app.
  1. Double-click on the image so that the “Edit” button appears at the top-right corner of the edit.
How Blur Images Mac Skitch Edit
  1. When the edit screen pops up, look for the “Retouch” option about halfway down on the right side of the app.
How Blur Images Mac Skitch Retouch
  1. With the Retouch tool engaged, drag the mouse icon across any part of an image that you wish to hide. You can increase or decrease the size of the pointer to help cover more or less of an image. Whereas Skitch actually blurs using its feature, the Retouch option is more of a smudge.
How Blur Images Mac Skitch Retouched

If you really need to remove something from an image, Skitch is likely the more preferred option. However, Photos is also free and immediately available on your Mac computer, making it an easy choice to get the job done.

Blur Images Using SnagIt

If Skitch isn’t your app of choice and the Photos app isn’t something you want to use, apps like SnagIt can do a similar job. Apart from just blurring images, SnagIt is jam-packed with a bunch of features, like taking screenshots, recording your screen, and editing photos and videos.

  1. Download SnagIt from the official website and install it on your Mac.
  2. Launch the application. Open the drop-down menu by clicking on “Files,” then click on “Open.”
Open A File In Snagit
  1. Click on the photo you want to blur and open it.
Select The Photo You Want To Blur And Open
  1. Click on the “More” button on the right corner of the tools menu and select “Blur.”
Select The Blur Tool Snagit
  1. Press and hold your left mouse button and drag your cursor across the part of the image you want to blur.
Snag It Blur Tool
  1. Press Command + S to save your photo. Alternatively, you can go to “Files” and click on “Save.”
Save File After Blurred Snagit

Frequently Asked Questions

Does blurring images affect image size?

In some cases, blurring images can increase or decrease the image size depending on the software you use to edit your image. It can also happen if your exported image is saved in a different file format than its original one.

How to blur parts of images online?

Here are some websites that are free of charge that allow you to blur images or parts of images. To use some of these options, however, you may have to create an account.


What are some additional Mac screen capture software that can blur images?

Here are a few more screen capture software options for Mac that can also edit and blur images.

  1. Shottr
  2. Monosnap
  3. LightShot

All screenshots by Ojash Yadav & David Joz

Ojash Yadav
Ojash Yadav

Ojash has been writing about tech back since Symbian-based Nokia was the closest thing to a smartphone. He spends most of his time writing, researching, or ranting about bitcoin.

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