Beauty Retouch Part 3: Smoothing Skin

Written by: Glyn Dewis

Published: June 2, 2010

Category: General

In this Part 3 of my Beauty Retouching series we’re going to be smoothing our model’s skin.
Now, over time I’ve used countless techniques for smoothing skin, all of which involved using a Blur Filter of some description. Although all great techniques, I was never 100% happy with the smooth/realistic combination; however that was until I was recently exposed to the following technique demonstrated in today’s video which makes use of the High Pass Filter.

Strange at first I know to think of using High Pass to smooth skin, but all will be revealed when you  press ‘Play’ 🙂

There are literally countless techniques out there for retouching and smoothing skin to choose from so all I’m doing here is showing you a technique I prefer because:

  1. It’s incredibly simple
  2. I feel it retains a strong element of realism in the skin (pores, texture etc)

I used to use techniques with the Gaussian Blur or Surface Blur filters until fairly recently when I saw this technique again by Master Retoucher, Calvin Hollywood so this (for now) is my preferred method for smoothing (female) skin; I say ‘female’ skin because as a rule I don’t apply any smoothing to male subjects.

Tomorrow in Part 4, we’ll be enhancing eyelashes and adding highlights to hair so until then,
Enjoy 🙂

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17 Comments

  1. DaveT

    Glyn,

    This mini series is just fantastic. Great technique which is so well explained and demonstrated – thank you so much for sharing.

    Dave

    Reply
    • Glyn

      @DaveT…Thanks so much for that mate; glad you’re liking them 🙂

      Reply
  2. David Kelly

    Hi Glyn,

    Another great video and as Alexsandr the Meerkat would say on that infamous advert – “Simples”. Looking at your comparison on the video it does work very well with retaining some kind of skin texture which is normally one of the problems in trying to maintain with retouching skin.

    I’ve never been one to want to spend ages retouching so these simple steps give me a good workflow for future reference. Looking forward to part 4.

    Thanks for sharing and kudos also to Calvin.

    Regards,

    David

    Reply
    • Glyn

      @David Kelly…Thanks for dropping by and commenting 🙂
      With so many techniques available in Photoshop to do all manner of things I would suggest a big part of the skill in editing is knowing when to ‘call it a day’ and not overdo it so yeah I totally understand your theory of not wanting to spend too long working on images.

      Cheers, Glyn

      …and yes, BIG Kudos to Calvin, Scott, Eddie Tapp and all, who I have learned so much from over the last few years.

      Reply
  3. GLEN SCOLAN

    fantastique tuto mini série.
    merci

    Reply
    • Glyn

      Glen,

      Merci du commentaire. Je suis vraiment heureux d’apprendre que vous appréciez les cours d’instruction visuels. Tout le meilleur à vous, Glyn

      Reply
  4. Andy Cuadra

    Great series Glyn, really enjoying learning the new techniques.

    Reply
    • Glyn

      @Andy…Thanks for that mate 🙂

      Reply
  5. Jurgen

    Glyn,

    You do a great job in explaining the retouch process in fast and simple steps.

    Reply
    • Glyn

      @Jurgen…Thanks for that mate 🙂

      Reply
  6. Matt Palmer

    Excellent tut Glyn. I’m really liking this method for skin smoothing. Very clean and simple with the ability to change amounts every step of the way. I’ve already tried out the technique on a couple of my images and got more pleasing results than with Imagenomic Portraiture.

    Looking forward to trying the rest of the techniques now.

    Reply
    • Glyn

      @Matt…Hi Matt, thanks for the comment…glad you like the tutorial. Fantastic to hear that you feel the results from the skin smoothing technique gave you more pleasing results than the Imagenomic Software.
      Cheers,
      Glyn

      ps> Be great to hear how you get on with the other tutorials too mate.

      Reply
  7. Dr. Photo

    Hi, great site! Really cool info you have here.

    I also made a blog that tells you which photo editor options/settings to use in order to enhance your photos and keep them looking natural. The specific settings (values) are listed so everything should be clear.

    This is for free photo editors like Picnik or Pixlr or others that I also list – you don’t need to install it or register to use it.

    You can see my blog in:
    http://www.enhance-photos.blogspot.com/

    If you’re interested feel free to also try to enhance your photos and please let me know how that worked for you – you can leave comments in my blog. It did a good job for most of my photos (not all) so I wonder how it will work for other people’s photos.

    Thanks!

    Reply
    • Glyn

      @Dr.Photo…Thanks for info; I’ll certainly head over at some point and take a look.

      Reply
    • Glyn

      Cheers 🙂

      Reply
    • Glyn

      🙂

      Reply

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