Remove Tattoos in Photoshop Using Content Aware


Removing tattoos from a human body in a photo can be a challenging task, but with the right tools and techniques, it’s quite manageable. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore how to use Photoshop’s Content Aware feature to effectively remove tattoos. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced user, this tutorial will provide valuable insights and step-by-step instructions to achieve a clean, natural-looking result.

Understanding Content Aware

Content Aware is a powerful tool in Photoshop designed for removing objects or unwanted areas in a photo. It smartly analyzes the surroundings of the selected area and offers suitable fill options to seamlessly blend the edit with the rest of the image. This feature is particularly useful for removing tattoos, as it can adapt to the skin’s texture and color variations.

Making a Copy of the Layer

Before starting any editing process, it’s crucial to create a copy of the existing layer. This step ensures that you have a backup in case anything goes wrong. You can make a copy using the Control J key combination.

Selecting the Tattoo

Using the Lasso tool (shortcut L), carefully select the tattoo. For smaller tattoos, zoom in and make a precise selection. It’s important to include a bit of the surrounding skin in the selection to allow Content Aware to analyze the area effectively.

Removing Small Tattoos

Start with smaller tattoos before tackling larger ones. After selecting the tattoo:

  1. Go to ‘Edit’ and choose ‘Content Aware Fill’.
  2. A new panel will open with preview and adjustment options.
  3. Adjust the panel size to view your workspace comfortably.
  4. Experiment with the color adaptation settings if the initial result isn’t satisfactory.

Applying the Content Aware Fill will remove the small tattoo seamlessly. If needed, use the shortcut Control D to deselect the area.

Tackling Larger Tattoos

Larger tattoos require more attention. Avoid starting with them as they might complicate the selection of smaller tattoos. Here’s how to proceed:

  1. Make a peripheral selection of the tattoo. Be cautious if the tattoo extends to different parts of the body, as it may require different techniques.
  2. Use the Clone Stamp tool (shortcut S) to manually erase parts of the tattoo, especially if it extends beyond a single area.
  3. After adjusting the tattoo, select it with the Lasso tool.
  4. Repeat the Content Aware Fill process, paying extra attention to color adaptation and blending.

After removing all tattoos, inspect the image for any imperfections. You may need to revisit certain areas with the Clone Stamp tool or make minor adjustments with the Lasso tool and Content Aware Fill.


Removing tattoos in Photoshop requires patience and attention to detail. By following these steps and utilizing the Content Aware feature effectively, you can achieve impressive results.