These are the basics that I use to edit my photos in Lightroom after applying a preset. (if needed)



After selecting a preset I like, I go to the Color menu

Orange (and sometimes yellow) is what I work with to bring back the right skin color

  1. De-saturate the orange
  2. Brighten up the Luminance of the orange (I kept it the same here)

Then I go into “Light” and up the contrast to make the photo pop a little

(edited with “Astoria”)


Scroll down

If you want to get rid of the grain,

Drag the grain bar to the left

(or drag it to the right to add grain)

(Edited with “Beige”)


If it doesn’t automatically straighten, adjust the dial manually.

click the check mark to save

(edited with Techni 4)


Exposure brightens the overall photo if you drag into the “+” or darkens the overall photo if you drag it into the “-”

I mostly use this when the photo is too dark and I want to “open up the shadows” to make it look brighter.

I keep whites and highlights in the negatives to make sure the skin tone is even or if a photo is too bright.

Also used when a preset I use makes me too “orange”


I only adjust the “Temp” to add warmth or coolness to my photo.

If the photo is too orange then I fix it by pulling it into the blues.

If it’s too blue, I fix it by pulling it into the yellows.

Example of adding a little warmth.


Staying in the Color Menu, select “MIX”

Choose the color above that you want to adjust

Hue: Changes the tone of the specific color

Saturation: Changes the color from really saturated or de-saturated to basically gray

Luminace: Makes the color brighter or darker


Select “Detail” then add or take away from sharpening


Select “Effects” > “Split Tone”

This is where, in my opinion, what makes a preset really stand out

The “Highlights” change the “lighter” area colors only

The “Shadows” adjust the darker area colors

Here’s an example of adjust both.

“H” Stands for Hue number.

“S” Stands for Saturation level