How to Make White Transparent in Photoshop | Envira Gallery (2023)

by Alec Druggan on May 17, 2021

There are many reasons that you may need to make white transparent in Photoshop CC. If you need to use an image for graphic design work or for a website, having a transparent file is a must. How can you make white transparent in photoshop? Additionally, why make white transparent in photoshop?

While Photoshop CC will be used for this tutorial, you can also use this tutorial for earlier versions of Photoshop, such as CS6. The majority of the tools used here are the same as earlier editions for this purpose.

You can download Photoshop for only $9.99/month with Adobe’s Creative Cloud Plan. This package includes Lightroom, another top-tier photo editing software. Make sure to get Photoshop before you continue with this tutorial.

How to make white transparent in Photoshop is a rather simple process. If you want to make a background transparent, take a look at this more extensive tutorial.

So, what is the easiest way to make white transparent in Photoshop? There are several different steps you will need to know about making white pixels transparent in your image and background. Here’s what we’ll cover in this article:

  • Why make white transparent in Photoshop?
  • Steps to making white transparent in Photoshop
  • Best tutorial for making white transparent in Photoshop

If instead, you are looking to make a background pure white, have a look here.

Why Make White Transparent in Photoshop?

One of the most important use cases for Adobe Photoshop is the conversion between different file types. File types like TIFF or PNG support transparent pixels. These file types are commonly used in graphic or web design.

Learning how you can apply these file types for your creative process will save you a lot of heartache. If you are constantly using the most efficient programs for jobs, like Adobe Illustrator, you’re going to need to know how to make white transparent.

Why Would You Want to Make White Pixels Transparent in Photoshop?

The reason somebody would use Photoshop to make pixels transparent is because the process is quite easy. Once you have practiced the process several times, it might be the easiest thing you know how to do in Photoshop. Transparent areas in images allow you to create layers and cutouts that you may have previously had a hard time with.

Furthermore, you may want to use some of the file types mentioned above for specific use cases. Need an image cutout for a presentation? Instead of a JPEG image with a color between different areas of the image, you can have a perfect cutout of something in your presentation which shows the background when necessary.

How Do You Remove a White Background in Photoshop?

As mentioned above, for general and busier backgrounds, you can refer to our tutorial on making whole backgrounds transparent. There are some easy steps to removing specifically white backgrounds however.

For example, you could use the Magic Wand Tool. To use the Magic Wand Tool, press keyboard shortcut W. If this selects your Quick Selection Tool, quickly switch tools with keyboard shortcut Shift + W.

(Video) Photoshop: Remove white background and make it transparent

The Magic Wand Tool is a subset of the Quick Selection Tool. This tool allows you to create simple selections, using Adobe Photoshop’s powerful engine to create these. Quick Selection Tool and Magic Wand Tool are both great for these fast selections of similarly colored or saturated areas of pixels.

How to Make White Transparent in Photoshop | Envira Gallery (1)

Because you are only selecting white pixels, lower the tolerance of thetool to around 20.

The way that tolerance works is that a higher tolerance allows for more difference in color in the selection. Lowering this tolerance variable for a single shade of white pixels is the way to go. If you have more variation in temperature or value across white pixels, keep it higher.

Now simply delete or erase your selection. Do this by using the Eraser Tool, with keyboard shortcut E, or pressing the Delete key. If a fill menu pops up, make sure that you are working on an unlocked Photoshop layer.

For more usability and gradient work, use a Layer Mask instead. A Layer Mask will allow you much more control in this process. With Layer Masks, you can easily revert deleted parts of selections.

To use a Layer Mask, create one on the layer you intend to remove the white pixels on. Then create your selection with the Magic Wand Tool. Finally, rather than erasing, use the Brush Tool and keyboard shortcut B to paint on black to hide and white to reveal pixels in your selection.

How Could Making White Transparent Benefit Your Images?

As previously discussed, making white pixels transparent will allow further creative facets with your images. Tools like the Quick Selection Tool and the Magic Wand Tool can easily make white pixels or your background transparent.

Furthermore, removing white pixels from your image can benefit you creatively. Instead of having typical whites in your image, using an offwhite color palette can add a different mood to your images. Rather than affecting the white balance of your entire image, you can easily target that of just the white pixels.

Steps to Making White Transparent in Photoshop

There are several steps to making white transparent in Photoshop. Thankfully, I can show you the easiest ways to make white transparent in photoshop. Together, we can answer the question: how do you make white transparent in Photoshop?

How to Make White Transparent in Photoshop?

There are several ways to make white pixels transparent in Adobe Photoshop. Simple things like the Eraser Tool can be used. Instead, we are going to go into more depth on how to make white transparent in photoshop even in more difficult selections.

First, select an image that you want to work on. This is the image that I will be experimenting with:

How to Make White Transparent in Photoshop | Envira Gallery (2)

For this image, I want to have an image slowly come from the middle of the photograph. To achieve this effect, I will set the photo above as the top layer in Photoshop, and then place following image beneath it:

How to Make White Transparent in Photoshop | Envira Gallery (3)

To accomplish this, I need to correctly layer these two images in photoshop. I begin by importing my photos into the same workspace, and then resizing the above image as the top layer until I see where it fits best.

(Video) Photoshop CC : How to Make White Background Transparent

However, this could obviously be done with a simple layer mask, but I will be using more extensive methods to best show you how to achieve this across a variety of different circumstances. This guide shows how you could do this job using only the Eraser Tool.

This shows a sample layer mask for this image:

How to Make White Transparent in Photoshop | Envira Gallery (4)

Finally, this is what the stacked images look like before I change their layers. Notice that the dark image is now the same size as the blank card in the first image:

How to Make White Transparent in Photoshop | Envira Gallery (5)

Now, I can move my top layer beneath my bottom layer. Notice how above the image is over the entire paper. Using this method I can have only the area I want showing.

To place it perfectly, consider using the Blending Mode screen in the Blending Mode drop-down menu and moving the image from there.

Move the layer beneath your bottom layer in the Layers Panel. If the bottom layer is still a background layer, unlock this layer by clicking the lock icon.

This is what your layers should look like at this point:

How to Make White Transparent in Photoshop | Envira Gallery (6)

Finally, create a selection of the top layer where you want the white pixels to become transparent. For images where it is just white, you can use Select >> Color Range in the drop-down menu. To access it more quickly than the drop-down menu, simply click Select and then use keyboard shortcut C.

Moreover, Select >> Color Range allows you to select the range of color you want with the eyedropper tool. Just choose the white you want to select.

For more information on modifying, creating, and removing selections, check out this in-depth Lasso Tool tutorial. Similarly, our Pen Tool tutorial can help you make precise selections. Learning the combination of the Lasso Tool and the Pen Tool is key to mastering Adobe Photoshop fundamentals.

Lastly, invert your selection and then make it a layer mask. This is what your image should look like. All the white pixels selected are now transparent, and we are left with a fun and creative effect.

This is my final image:

How to Make White Transparent in Photoshop | Envira Gallery (7)

Notice that I stretched the image to make it more vertical. I intended to do this to make the lines more appealing and match the lines in the image. Pay attention to subtle details like this when editing your own work, as well as when looking at others’.

(Video) Remove White Background from Logos in Photoshop (Fast & Easy!)

I also modified the opacity of the bottom layer and added a 10% gray layer underneath, so as to make the blacks more realistic. Learning how opacity can affect the texture of an image is important.

Best Tutorial for Making White Transparent in Photoshop

As always, the best tutorial for making white transparent in Photoshop depends heavily on what you are trying to accomplish. Fundamentally, learning all the fundamentals and basic tools to an advanced degree will make you a much stronger artist. Instead of having to figure out how to get to a final product, you will know how before you even sit down at a computer.

Useful Tutorials for Making White Pixels Transparent

The tutorial mentioned above somewhat broadens this method to all backgrounds.

If you are looking for some video tutorial options, this is a simple tutorial that will help you with this task. This YouTube tutorial is another option which does both internal parts of the image and the background. Lastly, this tutorial uses a blend mode to great impact on an image.

This tutorial Check out our tutorial to learn more about general image transparency. Using that plus learning about selections will make this process very simple. For selective color, like making an image only have on color or to erase a single color, look into this tutorial.

Did this photo editing tutorial add to your arsenal? If it did, please follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more photoshop and photo editing tutorials.

Using WordPress and want to get Envira Gallery free?

Envira Gallery helps photographers create beautiful photo and video galleries in just a few clicks so that they can showcase and sell their work.

Related Posts

  • How to Make an Image Transparent on Photoshop

  • (Video) Printing with no white background in Photoshop with the OKI pro920WT & C711WT

    How to Change a Background in Photoshop

  • How to Make a Background White in Photoshop

  • How to Make a Background Transparent in Photoshop and PowerPoint

  • How to Replace an Object's Background in Photoshop

  • How to Make an Image Transparent on Photoshop

    (Video) How To Remove White Background From Logos (EASY!) - Photoshop Tutorial


How do I make all white transparent in Photoshop? ›

To make a color transparent in Photoshop, go to Select > Color Range. Click on the color you want to remove, then hold Shift to add additional colors to the selection. Adjust the Fuzziness slider until your subject is white then click OK. Lastly, press Delete to make the selected colors transparent.

How do I make white text transparent in Photoshop? ›

Click anywhere on your image and type the text you want. With your text written out, double click on your text layer to open the Layer Style Panel. Under the 'Blending Options' tab, bring the Fill Opacity down to 0%. This will make your text completely invisible.

Why is my artboard white not transparent Photoshop? ›

By default, all the artboards will have a transparent background. So, right-click on the artboard that you want to make transparent and tap "Properties". Step 4: In the "Properties" window, click the "Artboard Background Color" drop-down menu and select "Transparent".

How do I make a white picture transparent? ›

How to Make an Image Transparent
  1. Click on "Make Transparent Background Now" button to get started.
  2. Upload or drag and drop the images that you want to make background transparent.
  3. Choose the "Background Remover" tool in "Adjust" on the left dashboard. ...
  4. Save the transparent background image with the PNG file.

How do you make pure white in Photoshop? ›

From the Create New Fill or Adjustment Layer icon at the bottom of you Layers Panel, select Solid Color. Set the color to pure white and click OK. This creates a white layer in between the two layers you already have.

How do I change a white background to transparent without Photoshop? ›

Create Transparent PNG File Using Microsoft
  1. Step 1: Add the Image to Microsoft Word. ...
  2. Step 2: Double Click on The Image. ...
  3. Step 3: Choose 'Remove Background' ...
  4. Step 4: Remove Background or Make Part Of Image Transparent. ...
  5. Step 5: Save File As Image.
Jul 13, 2022

How do I mask white out in Photoshop? ›

Open your image with a white background.
  1. Next, go to the Help Menu on the top bar and search for Quick Actions.
  2. A separate window will open, where you can search for Remove Background. ...
  3. Click the Remove Background button and speed up the background removal process in Photoshop in seconds.
Nov 4, 2021

What blending mode makes white transparent? ›

For example, the Neutral Color for the Multiply Blending Mode is white. Any white pixels on a layer will become transparent with Multiply. The Neutral Color for the Screen Blending Mode is black. Any black pixels on a layer will become transparent with Screen.

Why is my Photoshop not showing white? ›

Your monitor profile is probably bad. You should recalibrate and make a new one. Preferably with hardware calibration device. That you haven't calibrated your display and that it appears to be a "standard gamut" monitor means you're probably okay with having your system work at Windows default settings.

How to make an image transparent in Photoshop? ›

Select the desired layer, then click the Opacity drop-down arrow at the top of the Layers panel. Click and drag the slider to adjust the opacity. You'll see the layer opacity change in the document window as you move the slider. If you set the opacity to 0%, the layer will become completely transparent, or invisible.

Why is my transparent PNG not transparent in Photoshop? ›

The most likely issue is that your file is not in the correct format. PNG files must be in 8-bit or 16-bit format, and they must have an alpha channel. If your file doesn't have an alpha channel, Photoshop won't be able to make it transparent.

Can I remove the white background from an image? ›

Find the tool "Background Remover" at the left tool menu, and select "Common Cutout" or "Portrait Cutout" as needed. Fotor will automatically remove the white background on your photos after a few seconds. When you are happy with your image, click the 'Download' button and choose the image file you would like to use.

How do I make a white background transparent in design? ›

2. Select the “Object” menu option. Hover your mouse over the “Effects” option and then select “Transparency” from the drop-down list to bring up the Effects tool.

How do I get rid of the white background in Photoshop fast? ›

How to remove your background in Photoshop.
  1. Pick your photo. Open your image in the Layers panel and unlock the layer.
  2. Click to remove. In the Properties panel, click Remove Background under Quick Actions.
  3. Refine your edges. ...
  4. Replace your background. ...
  5. Move it to the back.

How do you take a perfect product picture with a white background? ›

Set your aperture setting between f/4.5 to f/7.1 if you have a plain, white background, and f/2.8 or lower if not. Your shutter speed should be set to 1/125 or higher to ensure clear and crisp shots. You should also set your white balance to 'AWB', or 'Auto White Balance'.

How do you blend transparency in Photoshop? ›

In Windows, choose Edit > Preferences > Transparency. In Mac, choose Photoshop Elements > Preferences > Transparency. Choose a pattern size from the Grid Size menu. Choose a pattern color from the Grid Colors menu.

Why does white look grey in Photoshop? ›

Look on the fly-out menu. If "Grayscale" is checked, your image will not have colors to it and the Color Picker may show a gray, white or black hue. You may receive an image that is grayscale or inadvertently convert your image to grayscale by accidentally clicking this mode.

How do I replace all white with another color in Photoshop? ›

Change the color on a photograph from white to color

Add a Hue Saturation adjustment layer (click on the Adjustment layer in and Layers Panel). This will make the Adjustment affect only the layer beneath and not all layers beneath the adjustment. Notice as we move the hue and saturation, you'll see a little color.

Why does my transparent PNG have a white background? ›

it depends how you are saving it. If you have Photoshop Layers, and you remove or delete the background so that it is transparent --- it will stay transparent in the PSD file, but if you try to export to export it for the web you might see a WHITE background for GIF, PNG, and JPEG.

How do I make my PNG transparent? ›

The benefit of PNG images is that they have the capability for transparency. Use the remove background tool to create a transparent background for an image, headshot, or logo, which you can then place into a variety of new designs and destinations.

What software removes white background from image? ›

Adobe Express makes removing a background quick and easy. It's as simple as uploading your image to our quick edit tool, letting our tool remove the background, and downloading your new image.

What is off white photo background? ›

Off-White background is achieved by just using a white seamless and no light on the background except the spill from the key light. Results in a little shadow in the lower right corner depending on how close the subject is to the background.

Can JPEG background be transparent? ›

The JPEG format doesn't support transparency.

Can PNG have transparent background? ›

Because PNGs can have transparent backgrounds, designers can layer them on different backgrounds and the backgrounds will show through. This makes the PNG format an excellent choice for utility assets.

How do I make a white background transparent in paint? ›

Open up Paint. Now go ahead and click on File > Open and choose the image you'd like to remove the background from. Once you see the image show up, go ahead and click on > Select > Transparent selection.

How do I change a color to transparent in Photoshop? ›

Select the desired layer, then click the Opacity drop-down arrow at the top of the Layers panel. Click and drag the slider to adjust the opacity. You'll see the layer opacity change in the document window as you move the slider. If you set the opacity to 0%, the layer will become completely transparent, or invisible.

How do I remove the same color in Photoshop? ›

With an active selection, press Shift + Command + I (Mac) or Shift + Control + I (PC) to inverse your selection. Next, select the image layer and add a layer mask. Your selection will automatically apply itself to the layer mask and turn your selected color invisible.

How do I change the white on an image in Photoshop? ›

How to change the color of an image in Photoshop.
  1. Create a layer mask. Navigate to the Select drop-down menu and click on Color Range in the menu options.
  2. Sample your target color. ...
  3. Refine your selection. ...
  4. Save your layer. ...
  5. Change your colors.


1. How to Make a Photoshop Layer Transparent
2. How to Save Image with a Transparent Background in Photoshop CS6
(Photoshop Design and Photo editing Tutorials from HowTech)
3. How To Make Logo Background Transparent in Photoshop!
(Photoshop Training Channel)
4. Change White Background to Transparent | Photoshop Tutorial
(Pixel & Bracket)
5. How To Export Transparent Backgrounds In Photoshop (Easy!)
(Brendan Williams)
6. How to remove a white background or make it transparent in photoshop
(Better Blog Images)


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Kareem Mueller DO

Last Updated: 12/09/2023

Views: 5676

Rating: 4.6 / 5 (66 voted)

Reviews: 89% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Kareem Mueller DO

Birthday: 1997-01-04

Address: Apt. 156 12935 Runolfsdottir Mission, Greenfort, MN 74384-6749

Phone: +16704982844747

Job: Corporate Administration Planner

Hobby: Mountain biking, Jewelry making, Stone skipping, Lacemaking, Knife making, Scrapbooking, Letterboxing

Introduction: My name is Kareem Mueller DO, I am a vivacious, super, thoughtful, excited, handsome, beautiful, combative person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.