How to Remove a Specific Color in Photoshop

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Knowing how to manipulate colors in Photoshop is essential because it lets you make a precise selection that can erase an entire range of colors with just a few clicks. If you were wondering how that’s possible, here’s a detailed guide on removing a specific color in Photoshop.

How to Remove a Specific Color in Photoshop

Undoubtedly, knowing how to remove a specific color in Photoshop is worthwhile because it saves you the stress of making a complex selection around your image subject. So, how do you use this color manipulation technique while editing?

An image editor

Two primary tools enable you to remove all of one color in Photoshop; The “Magic Wand” tool and the “Color Range Tool”. Both tools take a color sample and convert it into a selection. How can you use these tools constructively?

Below is a step-by-step guide to follow for you to use these tools to effectively remove all of one color from any image in Photoshop.

Removing a Specific Color With the Magic Wand Tool

As the name implies, this tool is a type of selection tool that performs quite the magic it promises. It functions by selecting image pixels based on the same color range. This effect makes it a suitable tool for removing a particular color in Photoshop.

This selection tool is highly effective and easy to use, although using it is not as easy as it sounds. If you don’t use it well, you might end up with bits and patches of color in some complex image elements. Then, how do you use this tool effectively?

Here are the steps to follow for you to use this tool to perform some color magic:

  1. When you have the image open in Photoshop, go to the toolbar and select the “Magic Wand” tool
  2. If the image’s hue is not very uniform, it’s a good idea to adjust the tolerance level to a range between 10 and 30.
  3. Then, click on an area of the picture that has the color you want to get rid of
  4. If the Magic Wand misses some spot during selection, you can adjust it by pressing “SHIFT” and selecting an area to add
  5. To remove an area from the selection, press the ALT/OPT key and click on the area you want to subtract.
  6. Press the “Delete” key on your keyboard to remove the selected color permanently.
  7. To remove the selection constructively, first press CTRL + SHIFT + I on a PC or CMD + SHIFT + I on a Mac to invert the selection.
  8. Then, choose the image layer and add a “Layer Mask”

Note: when you remove a precise color by adding a “Layer Mask” it is safer. You can quickly reverse the effect to the original color composition if you don’t like the modifications while removing color using the “Delete” key will lead to a permanent effect.

Removing a Specific Color With the Color Range Tool

With the Color Range tool, you can pick and change a small set of colors on an image. Once you’ve made your selection, it’s easy to change it or replace a specific color using this tool.

Instead of using the Magic Tool, when you use the Select Color Range Tool, the eyedropper tool is used to sample the colors in your photo. It creates a selection from this sample, based on a grayscale, and then it converts that grayscale into a selection later on.

An image of laptop and camera

Here’s a detailed procedure to follow in order to use this tool effectively:

  1. Open the desired image in Photoshop.
  2. Once you have your image, the best thing to do is make a copy of the layer. Doing this will make it easy to fix any mistakes.
  3. After that, go to the “Select” option and choose “Color Range” which displays a “Selection” dialog box
  4. In the dialog box, go to the “View Settings” option and set your “Image Preview” as “Selection”
  5. Then set your “Selection Preview” as “Grayscale”
  6. Then, select the “Eyedropper” tool and choose the color that you want to remove
  7. After that, adjust the Fuzziness to match the precision of your selections by using the “Fuzziness Slider”
  8. Next, hold Shift and click on your image to add more color samples to the same selection.
  9. After that, press “Delete” to permanently remove the selected color
  10. To remove the selected color constructively, Simply press Shift+Command+I (Mac) or Shift+Command+I (PC) to invert the image
  11. Then, choose the image layer, and add a layer mask.

Removing a Specific Color With the Magic Eraser Tool

The Magic Eraser tool is another option for selecting a precise color to remove in Photoshop.  It comes with the standard “Eraser” tool in Photoshop. This tool is best suitable to apply to images with a clear-cut colored area.

With the “Magic Eraser”, you have to carefully mark out your selections to prevent leaving undesirable patches on the image. How do you use the magic eraser to remove a certain color on Photoshop effectively? Follow the steps below to do this:

  1. Load up Photoshop on your computer and Open the desired image
  2. Navigate to the toolbar and select the “Magic Eraser” tool
  3. Then, using the settings displayed at the top of the screen, adjust the “Tolerance Level” to 30(Ideally, you can use any level between 10 and 30)
  4. Go to the panel at the right corner of the screen and select the color that you want to remove
  5. After that, click on the image with the selected color to remove them

Removing a Specific Color With the “Replace Color” Option

Another simple yet effective way to remove a precise color in Photoshop is using the “Replace Color” tool. This process is not complicated; although not as effective as the first two methods discussed, it still does the job well and faster.

How do you use this tool to remove a specific color on Photoshop? Here are some steps to follow to get the desired effects with this tool.

  1. Open your image in Photoshop to get started.
  2. Make a copy of your image by clicking on the Image button, then choose the “Duplicate” option in the menu.
  3. To start removing colors, switch to the “Duplicate” image tab.
  4. Navigate to the Layers panel and select “Background layer”
  5. Then, go to the Image menu at the top and select the option titled “Adjustments” which displays a submenu
  6. From the submenu, select “Replace Color” which displays a dialog box
  7. From the dialog box, select the color to be replaced and the result color
  8. Then adjust the “Fuzziness” within a range of 20-30
  9. Now, choose the color in the image you want to delete using the eyedropper tool.
  10. After that, click on OK to confirm this modification
An image of a woman learning how to remove a specific color in Photoshop

What Are the Benefits of Knowing How to Remove Specific Colors in Photoshop?

While editing your images in photoshop, understanding how to get certain effects will significantly improve your efficiency. One of these very helpful effects is the technique of removing all of one color from an image.

Knowing how to remove a certain color entirely from an image will save you the time and effort of having to create complex selections surrounding your subject. Besides, it makes your editing smooth, reducing the chances of having color patches and bits after editing.

Conclusion

Learning to remove a specific color from photoshop is worth the effort because it helps streamline your editing process. To remove all of one color effectively, you can use any of these four methods; the magic wand tool, the color range tool, the Magic eraser, or the “Color Replace” option.