How To Select By Color In Adobe Photoshop

Photoshop is packed with many features that make photo editing much more manageable. One of these features that photoshop offers is the selection by color, this feature allows you to select a specific color in an image, and it will include all the areas that have this same color.

This feature can sound confusing if you are just getting started with photoshop but can be extremely useful once you know how to use the tools for it. There are many tools to select by color in photoshop that you can choose from.

The tools that will be highlighted in this article are the magic wand tool, the color range tool, and the quick selection tool. Here is everything you need to know about selecting by color in photoshop.

person using black laptop computer

There’s More Than One Way to Do Things in Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop gives you the freedom to find the tools that will work best for you; specific tools may work better for different projects. Luckily, photoshop has a good variety of tools to choose from.

But before you work with any color tools in photoshop, it is important to understand the photoshop color wheel. This will teach you how to create a color wheel that will work for your project, making it much easier to choose which selection by color will be better for you.

turned on MacBook Pro displaying music

What is The Select By Color Feature?

The select by color feature is used to edit areas of an image by selecting certain colors of an image. The chosen color will be selected by the editors, who can decide to make changes to all the areas of an image that is the same color as the one chosen. This can be very handy when working on a specific section of an image without affecting the entire picture.

tuned on Macbook

What Can You Do With The Select By Color Feature?

All select by the color tools will give you different options for what you can do to the image you are working with. However, this feature will allow you to edit specific areas of an image, delete a background color, useful with skin tones, adjust certain colors, and more.

Photoshop color image

Different Photoshop Tools To Select By Color

Whether you prefer clicking on dragging, Adobe photoshop will have a tool for you. Here are the best tools to choose from to select by color:

Selecting Color Range Command

A color range command is a selection tool that you can find under the select menu. This tool is a great tool to use when working with a canvas with a lot of detail as it selects more transparent pixels. If you are a beginner, the best way to use the color range command tool would be in “Sampled Colors option.”

This tool can adjust the degree of colors, which can be done with the fuzziness slider. To add the color selected to the range of colors, press the ‘shift’ key and select the new color sections of the image.

In the color range dialog box, you have the option to preview the pixels that it will select before making the final selection. There are a few options in the preview area to choose from, including black matte, quick mask, white matte, and greyscale.

flat lay photography of purple and red leaves

The Magic Wand Tool

This selection tool allows you to edit specific areas of an image based on its color. The magic wand tool uses similarities in tone and color to select pixels of specific areas of an image.

The tool will then choose hues similar to the color picked to be included in the selection. You can use the options bar to refine your search for colors in photoshop to select a specific color more accurately.

person using laptop computer

What is great about the magic wand tool is that it allows you to click, unlike most photoshop selection tools that require dragging around the outline. This makes it much easier when working with a canvas with multiple colors and intricate details.

However, because this tool selects pixels based on the similarities in colors and tones, it is mainly used when working with solid color, specifically background colors and foreground color.

woman carrying baby while walking
Magic Wand Tool options include:
  • Contiguous: when selected, this means that pixels that have been chosen are linked closely together. This will help to limit the selection in a specific area or choose areas across the canvas.
  • Anti-Alias: when selected, this tool helps blend the transitions between colors seamlessly by smoothening the edges of the selected pixels.
  • Tolerance level: controls the sensitivity of luminance values of a particular color.


Quick Selection Tool

The quick selection tool is one of the more user-friendly photoshop tools to use. All you have to do is select the option and use the brush on the area of the image you would like to select.

This tool will choose according to the pixel’s colors that you have brushed across. Yes! It is that simple.

MacBook Pro beside white cup

Can I Remove All of One Color Using Select by Color Feature?

Adobe Photoshop can specify colors from images by using the select by color feature. Both the magic wand tool and then select color range tool can remove all of one color in an image.

These tools are the best options because they allow the editor to select a specific color, sample it, and match other areas of the image with the same color. This will make it easy to simply remove the color chosen as photoshop will do most of the selection work for you.

woman browsing on the internet


What is the layer mask in photoshop?

Layer masks allow you to adjust the visibility of a specific layer of an image. This feature is great when you want to hide areas of an image, such as the background layer of an image.

Where is the eyedropper tool in photoshop?

You can find the eyedropper tool in the toolbar on the left-hand side of your screen. To activate this tool, all you need to do is click is and begin sampling color for a new background or foreground.

silver imac and apple keyboard


In conclusion, when it comes to editing areas of an image, select by color feature in photoshop can make your job much easier. Say goodbye to spending hours editing specific picture objects with the same color!

You can find the best option for your project with the different select by color tools like the color range command, the magic wand tool, and the quick selection tool. Choose from one of these options to edit your image, edit your image, select image preview, click save, and you’re done. Good luck!

Latest posts by Shabbir (see all)