How to modify Lightroom presets?

If you have ever applied a preset and it came out too much and wished you knew how to tone it down or lower its opacity then you are not alone. The good news is that you can modify lightroom presets and make them what you want them to be.

There are different ways to go about modifying the best lightroom presets. The way you choose to adjust the presets may be different as compared to someone else. Here are some of the presets available in lightroom and how you can modify them to make your picture perfect.

The Basic Panel

There are times when a preset isn’t really too much. It’s just that it didn’t apply to your photo the way you wanted it. It probably made your photo darker than you expected or too cool for you. The first resource to modify and correct this mess is the basic panel.


If your photo is underexposed, it may not be fixed by a preset since presents only have effects on perfectly exposed photos. So you can make use of the Exposure slider in the Basic Panel if you wish to brighten your photo that was made darker by a preset.

The Tone Curve

The Tone Curve Panel adds more contrast and matte effect to a photo. If you find the matte effect to be a little too much, you can adjust the Tone Curve.

The easiest way to modify a curve that has been created by a preset is to click on the Point Curve. It is simple—just click on the box in the lower left of the panel.

Split Toning

Split Toning Panel in presets normally adds tone and color to an image. You can add color tone to the highlights by going to the Highlights section. How much of the color that shows in the highlights is normally determined by the saturation slider.


The Shadow section sets the color tone you can add to the shadows. The saturation slider on the other hand determines how much color will show in the shadows.

Adjustment Brushes

The best way to modify lightroom presets to have an effect on smaller areas of the photo is by making use of Adjustment brushes. The effect may look good on most parts of the photo but not is a specific spot. Adjustment brushes help make these changes.

So if you apply a preset and your good photo looks too dark, an adjustment brush can help brighten the subject and leave the exposure in the rest of the photo.


There are presets that use filters to add contrast, exposure and color among other changes to the image. You can easily modify the filter changes if you find them too much for the image. In this case, click on the filter then use the filter panel to make the changes.

You can also adjust the exact points you want the changes to be made by moving the filter around your image. To do that, select the filter then click and drag.