Learn how to easily adjust facial features in Photoshop using these magical tools.
Table of contents
Download the tutorial image here.
Convert The Portrait Into a Smart Object
Open a portrait image and right-click on the layer > Convert to Smart Object. By converting it into a Smart Object, you can work non-destructively.
This means you can apply adjustment layers, filters, effects, but you can always readjust them later on or revert to the original properties.
Apply Face-Aware in The Liquify Filter To Adjust Facial Features
Choose Filter > Liquify.
The Liquify filter will immediately detect that there is a face in the image.
If you hover over certain parts of the image, it shows the on-screen overlays since the Face tool is active by default.
The on-screen overlays show handles similar to the transformation tool, and likewise, it allows you to click-and-drag specific areas to adjust it.
You’ll see sliders on the Properties panel that will allow you to accurately adjust each part of the face by inputting number values.
In case you have multiple faces in the image, the Select Face drop-down allows you to choose which face to adjust at a time.
With that in mind, click-and-drag on a handle to expand or contract the forehead, cheeks, or chin.
Keep in mind that when you are doing photo retouching, it’s better to make small, subtle adjustments than to make dramatic adjustments right away.
However, for the sake of showing the possibilities of this Filter, dramatic adjustments will be shown.
Explore each adjustment slider or use the handles to adjust the face.
If you want to see the original face, uncheck the box for Preview and recheck it to see the changes you apply.
Use Puppet Warp to Adjust Facial Features
The adjustments applied to the Liquify tool has been canceled to show you a different type of distortion.
Select the Lasso tool and select an area that you want to adjust.
Let’s say you want to give the subject in the image a better smile, create a selection around the nose and mouth.
With the layer selected, press Ctrl J (Windows) or Command J (macOS) to duplicate the pixels inside of the selection.
Right-click on the Duplicated layer and select Convert to Smart Object.
Choose Edit > Puppet Warp.
By default, the mesh is enabled, and you can easily disable it by unchecking the Show Mesh box in the Options bar.
Now, you can click on the edges of the mouth and the inner line to create pins. These pins function similarly to transformation handles that you can click-and-drag to adjust the pixels.
To make the subject smile more, click on the pin along the mouth’s outer edge and drag it outward. Then, do the same with the other side.
If you hold Alt (Windows) or Option (macOS), you will see a circular overlay that you can use to click-and-drag to rotate the pixels surrounding the pin.
When you’re done, click on the checkmark icon in the Options bar to save the changes.
Looking at it again, the left outer edge of the mouth has been dragged further away, and it seems unequal with the other side.
Since you are working with a Smart Object, you can quickly readjust small mishaps like this by double-clicking on the Puppet Warp label under the Smart Object, and it will take you back to the Puppet Warp workspace.
If you want to know more about how you can manipulate poses using the Puppet Warp tool, click here!
Selectively Apply The Puppet Warp Facial Adjustment with Masks
Hold Alt (Windows) or Option (macOS) as you click on the New Layer Mask icon to create a black Layer Mask.
This prompts to hide everything on the screen, and you can choose which pixels you want to reveal.
Select the Brush tool and set white (#ffffff) as your Foreground color.
Then, start painting in the mouth area to reveal the new readjusted mouth.
By adjusting the Brush size and hardness, you can achieve it accurately without revealing every pixel in the previous layer.
With this trick on how to adjust facial features in Photoshop, you can easily improve your photo in post production if you want to improve a smile, remove a frown, and more!
If you enjoyed this tutorial, try it out yourself and tag #PTCvid when you post it on social media!