How to make an eye sparkle in Photoshop

February 5, 2013

Hello! I’ve decided to give a tutorial blog a go. I love Photoshop, I’ve been taught it at school/university, watched tutorials and played around with it myself to learn. I have just began using Lightroom along side it (I know I’m behind.. Don’t judge!). I like to use Photoshop to enhance people not to change people. If I have a spot.. I’m going to get rid of it of course! I’m not a big fan of over airbrushing, I hate it when people look fake so I will never use Photoshop to this extent. What I want to show is, that you can use a few simple skills to enhance your photographs. Here goes!

I use Photoshop CS5 and you should edit zoomed in at 100% but for the benefit of being able to see the whole photograph I haven’t. Apologies.

+ Open your photograph in Photoshop. Use Lightroom or Photoshop to change the lighting etc beforehand.

Screen shot 2013-02-05 at 13.02.32

+ Use the ‘Lasso tool’ and make a selection around the iris. (You can enlarge the photo by clicking on it)

+ Copy and paste selection. Tip! You can use the cmd C and cmd V to copy and paste quickly!

Screen shot 2013-02-05 at 13.02.54

+ Make an adjustment layer. (Bottom right hand corner – see above photo where arrow is)

+ Once you’ve made your adjustment layer, click back onto the copied layer (on the left of the adjustment layer)

Screen shot 2013-02-05 at 13.03.20

+ Now you’re back on the correct layer, so to Image>Adjustments>Shadows/Highlights

Screen shot 2013-02-05 at 13.03.41

+ Use the arrows to adjust the settings, you’ll see the iris changing colours and the highlights should ‘pop’, making the eye look sparkly! Click OK once it is how you like.

Screen shot 2013-02-05 at 13.05.01

+ Click back onto the adjustment layer.

Tip! The good thing about using an adjustment layer is that by using the black and white paint tool, you can get rid of something using the black and bring it back using the white. 

+ So by using the black paint tool you can erase the excess on the layer around the iris that you don’t need.

Tip! Use [ and ] to make the paint brush bigger or smaller. Have hardness on 0% so the brush is feathered which makes it smoother.

+ Repeat on other eye


You don’t have to make severe changes that change a person completely, but I like this because you’re not changing a persons eye colour, you’re just making it stand out more!

I hope this helped in some way!

Stay creative







Will you stop being so pretty! Though I may definitely use this technique ;-) Thanks sweet! x

Trying to blog a few little tips! :)
I love the video you put on of editing.
And thanks :) I’m really not … Its photoshop ;)


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