PicMonkey: To Pay or Not To Pay

PicMonkeyIf you’re a blogger then you’re familiar with PicMonkey; a photo editing website that up until a few days ago, was free! Even if you’re not a blogger, you might be a fan of this free software that made your photos go from plain to pro in just a few clicks…no skill required!

What’s changed? There’s now a $4.99 a month option for the “Royale” features. Don’t worry, there is a still a free version of picmonkey.com that may meet your needs.

This is a big decision as five bucks really adds up. That’s $72 a year, and if you’re using it primarily for  blogging then it might be hard to justify the costs when most of us don’t get paid much.


This is a hard question to answer. And there might be no real way of telling. If you’re like me, you love taking photos and photo editing, so wanting to add pretty pictures to your blog just comes naturally. PicMonkey made that possible for a lot of us but now we have a decision to make.

Is it worth making the investment?

I decided to pay for one month on PicMonkey.com so that I could make a good comparison, but of course, the decision is yours depending on what features you use most.

It looks like PicMonkey did a good job of getting to know us and our habits before they started charging. A lot of my favourite features will now cost me. Check it yourself and see how your needs measure up.


Please note: this feature is Part One of the PicMonkey feature. This does not include the Themes segment of PicMonkey which will come at a later date.

Let’s get started:


All basic edits are included in both the free version and the Royale version. Thanks PicMonkey!

  • Crop
  • Rotate
  • Exposure
  • Colors
  • Sharpen
  • Resize


Effects change the way your image looks by applying funky and fun colours, balances and other manipulations. I apply some sort of effect to almost every image I edit. I think there are enough free choices to do most of your photo needs justice.

PicMonkey EffectsTOUCH UP

Touch Ups include the fun stuff like Red-eye Remover, Airbrushing and my favourite: Wrinkle Remover. Sadly, WR costs. Which will be cheaper; a yearly Botox injection or a PicMonkey membership?

PicMonkey Touch UpTEXT

If you want to add text to your photos (which I almost always do) then here are your choices. In my opinion, there are plenty of free fonts to choose from to add a variety to your images.

PicMonkey FontsOVERLAYS

Overlays enable you to add character to your images like Labels, Arrows, Comic Bubbles and more. I’m a big fan of the Labels feature and guess what? It’ll cost you!

PicMonkey OverlaysFRAMES

Ah, the Pièce de résistance, photo frames. What is a picture without a frame? This one includes my personal must-have which is the Rounded Corners feature. Thank goodness this option is free; with one click, you get perfectly rounded edges to soften your image for display.

PicMonkey FramesTEXTURES

Just as the title says, add fun textures to your images like Weaves, Paint and Metal. I’m not one to use textures much (to date) so I could live with or without these.

PicMonkey Textures

Of course, with the paid version you also get to lose the ads. Honestly, I didn’t find the advertisements that annoying. You can be the judge: ads vs. $4.99 a month?


The good thing is that PicMonkey doesn’t lock you into to a commitment. Meaning, you don’t have to pay for 12 months upfront. So if you really want to see which is best for you, try out a one month membership with knowledge that you can cancel at any time.

Be careful though, membership automatically renews if you don’t cancel in time. Opting out is available on the picmonkey.com website.

Happy editing!

Logo from picmonkey.com

City Mom

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