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20 Best Photoshop Actions With Cool Art Effects for Portraits

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Read Time: 9 mins
This post is part of a series called Photoshop Portraits.
How to Increase Impact in Portraits With Selective Masking
3 Trendy Ways to Create Artistic Photo Effects With Photoshop Actions

Even with the perfect portrait, sometimes you need something to give it a little more impact. Here, we’ve put together our favourite 20 Photoshop portrait actions with cool art effects.

Unlimited Photoshop Action Downloads From Envato Elements

Finding the perfect Photoshop portrait action to use can be tricky. I mean Envato Elements has over 3,000 alone! But if you have an Envato Elements subscription, you don't have to be selective with what you download. That's because you'll have access to every Photoshop action and creative asset on the platform for a monthly fee.

Photoshop Actions for Portraits From Envato ElementsPhotoshop Actions for Portraits From Envato ElementsPhotoshop Actions for Portraits From Envato Elements
You can download unlimited Photoshop actions for portraits from Envato Elements.

Everything on Envato Elements is professionally crafted, so your projects benefit from premium quality. With unlimited downloads, you can try anything you'd like without worrying about caps or limits. 

Here we're going to look at 20 of the best portrait Photoshop actions. Each Photoshop action is from Envato Elements, where you can download unlimited resources for a monthly subscription.

1. Destroyed Photoshop Portrait Action (ATN, GRD, PAT)

Destroyed is one of the most interesting Photoshop actions for portrait photography. It creates a distorted exposure effect. The film grain adds to the ethereal look of the results of this action.

Destroyed Photoshop Portrait ActionDestroyed Photoshop Portrait ActionDestroyed Photoshop Portrait Action
Destroyed Photoshop Portrait Action

2. Portrait Photoshop Action & Lightroom Preset (ATN, XMP)

The effect of this Photoshop action for portraits is subtle, but that's what makes it great. It does a great job of bringing out different shades and tones. If you're after the perfect portrait Photoshop action for fashion or blogging, try this one.

Summer Photoshop Action for Portrait PhotographySummer Photoshop Action for Portrait PhotographySummer Photoshop Action for Portrait Photography
Portrait Photoshop Action & Lightroom Preset

3. Classic Oil Portrait Photoshop Action (ATN)

Turn yourself or your subjects into beautiful art with this painting effect Photoshop action. This download is easy to use, and it comes with a help file in case you need assistance. Use it for social media, promotional material, and more.

Classic Oil Portrait Photoshop ActionClassic Oil Portrait Photoshop ActionClassic Oil Portrait Photoshop Action
Classic Oil Portrait Photoshop Action

4. Dark Portrait Action & Lightroom Presets (ATN, XMP)

Here's another of the best portrait Photoshop actions from Envato Elements. It's a simple action that works to bring out darker tones in your photos. This portrait Photoshop action download also comes with Lightroom files.

Dark Portrait Action & Lightroom PresetsDark Portrait Action & Lightroom PresetsDark Portrait Action & Lightroom Presets
Dark Portrait Action & Lightroom Presets

5. Portrait Into Text Photoshop Action (ATN)

If you want to go in a different direction with your work, try Portrait Into Text. This Photoshop action for portrait photography turns your images into lines of text. It works for both colour and black-and-white photos.

Portrait Into Text Photoshop ActionPortrait Into Text Photoshop ActionPortrait Into Text Photoshop Action
Portrait Into Text Photoshop Action

6. FilterGrade Light Leaks Bundle (ATN)

Controlled light leaks are a great effect and can bring new life to portrait photographs. Included in this download are 40 Photoshop actions for portraits, including some custom film effects.

FilterGrade Light Leaks Photoshop Portrait Actions BundleFilterGrade Light Leaks Photoshop Portrait Actions BundleFilterGrade Light Leaks Photoshop Portrait Actions Bundle
FilterGrade Light Leaks Bundle

7. Double Light Photoshop Action (PAT, ABR)

Add a dual light effect to your portraits with this Photoshop set. It contains ten actions which roll out into well-structured folders and layers, making it easy to customise, as the best portrait Photoshop actions should be.

Double Light Photoshop ActionDouble Light Photoshop ActionDouble Light Photoshop Action
Double Light Photoshop Action

8. Blood Art Photoshop Action (ATN)

Turn your portraits into an arty explosion with the Blood Art Photoshop action set. The ten cool colour effects can be used with full body or headshots.

Blood Art Photoshop ActionBlood Art Photoshop ActionBlood Art Photoshop Action
Blood Art Photoshop Action

9. Redwood Fairytale Photoshop Actions for Portraits (ATN)

These three fantasy Photoshop portrait actions are perfect for images photographed in natural light and environmental portraits. The actions will add a soft, warm haze to your photo, giving it a hint of fairytale.

Redwood Fairytale Photoshop Actions for Portrait PhotographyRedwood Fairytale Photoshop Actions for Portrait PhotographyRedwood Fairytale Photoshop Actions for Portrait Photography
Redwood Fairytale Photoshop Actions for Portraits

10. Portfolium: Post Processing Photoshop Action (ATN, ABR)

Create soft-focus, studio-lit effects with the Portfolium set of Photoshop actions for portraits. There are 20 colour presets, and you can further customise the effects of each one after you’ve run it.

Portfolium Portrait Photoshop ActionsPortfolium Portrait Photoshop ActionsPortfolium Portrait Photoshop Actions
Portfolium — Post Processing Photoshop Action

11. Anaglyph 3D Action (ATN)

A cool 3D effect, Anaglyph can give your portraits a futuristic retro look, if that isn’t too contradictory. The best bit is, it actually works with the old-style 3D glasses, so go raid your attic for some and enjoy!

Anaglyph 3D ActionAnaglyph 3D ActionAnaglyph 3D Action
Anaglyph 3D Action

12. Film Noir B&W Portrait Photoshop Actions (ATN)

Film Noir includes six of the best artistic black and white portrait Photoshop actions. Designed to add atmosphere and tone to your photographs, Film Noir really packs a punch. If you like the classic look, this is the perfect portrait Photoshop action to use.

Film Noir BW Photoshop ActionsFilm Noir BW Photoshop ActionsFilm Noir BW Photoshop Actions
Film Noir B&W Portrait Photoshop Actions

13. Cinnamon Photoshop Portrait Actions (ATN)

"Wild, mysterious and enigmatic" are bold claims indeed. But these Photoshop actions for portrait photography deliver. Cinnamon Portrait Actions are a fantastical delight for your portraits, from a subtle warm-toned colouring to something more mysterious…

Cinnamon Portrait ActionsCinnamon Portrait ActionsCinnamon Portrait Actions
Cinnamon Photoshop Portrait Actions

14. Gypsy Portrait Photoshop Actions (ATN)

Gypsy contains four professional portrait Photoshop actions designed to make give your photographs a cinematic quality. From expressive and cold to rich and warm toning, Gypsy covers a lot in one neat little package.

Gypsy Portrait Photoshop ActionsGypsy Portrait Photoshop ActionsGypsy Portrait Photoshop Actions
Gypsy Portrait Photoshop Actions

15. Suburbia Photoshop Actions (ATN)

The best portrait Photoshop actions don't need to do much to be effective. This download gives your portraits a contemporary feel with simplicity. Suburbia is the perfect portrait Photoshop action for lifestyle, wedding, and family photography.

16. Digital Portrait Painting Effect Photoshop Action (ATN, PAT, ABR)

Adopt a museum-worthy look with this painting effect Photoshop action. This download takes your portraits to the next level. The results are created in editable layers, so you can further customize the final look.

Digital Portrait Painting Effect Photoshop ActionDigital Portrait Painting Effect Photoshop ActionDigital Portrait Painting Effect Photoshop Action
Digital Portrait Painting Effect Photoshop Action

17. Portrait Urban Presets Mobile & Desktop (ATN, DNG, XMP)

Are you after an urban aesthetic in your next project? Then this is the perfect portrait Photoshop action for the occasion. It adds cooler tones to your image for a grittier, more realistic feel. You'll get Photoshop and Lightroom files in this download.

Urban Portrait Photoshop ActionUrban Portrait Photoshop ActionUrban Portrait Photoshop Action
Portrait Urban Presets Mobile & Desktop

18. Portrait to Painting Action Set (ATN)

There are all types of painting effect Photoshop actions worth checking out. This one has a different art style from the others featured on this list. It's easy to use, making it one of the best Photoshop actions for portrait photography to try in your work.

Portait to Paining Photoshop ActionPortait to Paining Photoshop ActionPortait to Paining Photoshop Action
Portrait to Painting Action Set

19. Portrait Green Action & Lightroom Presets (ATN, XMP)

Photoshop actions for portraits aren't all about making everything look bright and vibrant. This interesting option brings out green tones in your photos, and with nice results.

Portrait Green Action & Lightroom PresetsPortrait Green Action & Lightroom PresetsPortrait Green Action & Lightroom Presets
Portrait Green Action & Lightroom Presets

20. Moiré Illusion Portrait Photoshop Action (ATN)

Moiré rounds out our list of Photoshop portrait actions, and it does it on a high note. It has a cool illusion effect thanks to the concentric circles used in the action. The results look great on their own, and can fit well into other projects too.

Moiré Illusion Portrait Photoshop ActionMoiré Illusion Portrait Photoshop ActionMoiré Illusion Portrait Photoshop Action
Moiré Illusion Portrait Photoshop Action

Time to Wrap Up...

I hope you enjoyed this list of the best portrait Photoshop actions available on Envato Elements. As you can see, there's a lot of variety in what you can use. If you haven't found the perfect portrait Photoshop action above, don't worry. There are thousands available on Envato Elements that you can browse.

If you'd like to see this post in video form, check it out below, courtesy of the Envato Tuts+ YouTube channel.

Happy designing! That's all I have for you today. Well, almost.

... But Here Are Some More Top Tutorials for Perfect Portraits

I can't let you leave before giving you some more resources to help you in your creative work! If these Photoshop actions for portraits sparked your interest in photography even more, these links offer what you need to improve your skills and get you on your way.

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