How to Blur a Picture or Part of a Picture on iPhone (2023)

While Portrait Mode is great for blurring out the background, you may need to know how to blur out part of a picture on iPhone.

Ever had a weird person photo bomb your family pictures? Or has your nephew decided that wearing shirts with curse words is appropriate birthday-party attire? There may be many reasons why you might need to blur out part of a photo. We’ve already covered Portrait Mode as a useful feature for blurring out the background, but blurring part of an image is a different matter and may come in very handy in the future.

Related: How to Turn Off Portrait Mode After Taking a Photo on iPhone

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How to Blur Part of a Picture on iPhone

Unfortunately, Apple’s photo editing software does not have the capabilities to blur out a specific part of the photo. That means you will need to download an app from the App Store. Luckily, I’ve downloaded and tried out a few completely free apps that I think are the simplest to use and the most effective. Blur Photo is a great app for simplicity and ease of use. Blur Photo Effect Background is another great app especially for blurring out faces. I’ll show you how to use them below.

Blur Part of an Image with Blur Photo App

Blur Photo app icon

Blur Photo is an easy-to-use app that will give you a very opaque blur anywhere on your photo. First, download Blur Photo from the App store and then we can get started. For more cool tips and tricks about how to use your iPhone, sign up for our Tip of the Day newsletter! 

  1. Open the Blur Photo app on your iPhone.

    use app blur photo effect background
  2. Tap Blur to explore your photos.

    use blur photo app
  3. Select a photo you'd like to blur.

    select photo to blur from camera roll
  4. Crop the photo to your needs.

    swipe through cropping options
  5. Tap Done when finished.

    select done when finished cropping
  6. Tap the Blur Tool.

    choose blur feature
  7. Use your finger to draw on the photo where you would like to blur.

    draw with finger on photo where you'd like to blur
  8. Tap the Invert button to reverse the blur, leaving only your selection in focus. 

    click invert to have only that part be in focus
  9. The Undo button is at the top menu to handle quick mistakes. 

    click undo at the top
  10. Tap Next when you're happy with your photo. 

    click next at the top
  11. Swipe through the app's filter options.

    swipe through filter options
  12. Click the Share button when finished. 

    select save
  13. Your photo will automatically save to your camera roll. You can also select where you'd like to share the photo directly.

    share to any app directly

How to Blur Out Part of a Picture with Blur Photo Effect Background

Blur Photo Effect Background app icon

Another simple, user-friendly app you can use to blur parts of your picture is called Blur Photo Effect Background. I'll walk you through how to use this app below.

  1. Open the Blur Photo Effect Background app.

    use a third party app to blur parts of your picture
  2. Either choose a photo from your camera roll or take a new photo.

    choose a photo to blur
  3. Select a photo to blur.

    select a photo from camera roll
  4. Tap the blur tool at the bottom menu.

    choose blur tool
  5. You can adjust the size of your blur tool.

    adjust blur tool size
  6. Then, use your finger to draw on the photo where you'd like to blur.

    blur out by drawing with your finger
  7. You can also choose to invert the blur, leaving only where you drew in focus. 

    select invert to reverse the blur
  8. To undo or redo, you can tap the arrows at the bottom menu.

    tap undo and redo buttons on the bottom bar
  9. When you're done, click the save button in the top right corner.

    choose save
  10. You will receive a message asking to save the photo to your camera roll. Tap OK.

    save to camera roll

And that's how you blur out only part of your picture! These apps are very similar, but they produce a slightly different opaqueness and they offer slightly different customization options. Feel free to try out either to decide which one you prefer. Remember, they're both completely free so you never have to stress about a photo mistake again! 

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Author Details

Rachel Needell's picture

Author Details

Rachel Needell

Rachel Needell is a Feature Web Writer at iPhone Life, a published poet, and a longtime Apple enthusiast. Before graduating in the spring of 2021 with her Master’s degree in Literature, specializing in early 20th-century American and British Modernism, she was a college writing tutor and University English professor. Her latest piece, "Temporizing: Self Portrait" can be found in the Winter '21 edition of New Note Poetry. Although an enthusiastic traveler, you can most often find Rachel curled up under a blanket with a glass of red wine, reading a book with her cat Blue in Charlotte, North Carolina.