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Use Luminar as the plug-in

While Luminar is a full featured stand-alone application, some users also choose to install and run it as a plug-in for other photo editing software. If you installed after downloading from our website, you should be prompted to install the plug-ins for detected software you already have installed. If you choose to install as a plug-in at a later time, you can easily do so.

  • Make sure Luminar is open.
  • Simply choose Luminar > Install Plug-ins… to start.

A new dialog box appears to show you which supported host applications you have currently installed on your Mac. 
The host applications supported by Luminar are:

  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Adobe Photoshop Lightroom
  • Adobe Photoshop Elements
  • Apple Aperture

Click the Install/Uninstall button for the corresponding apps in which you’d like Luminar to run. In addition (though it’s not listed in this plug-in dialog box) Luminar will operate as an editing extension in Photos for Mac.

NOTE: For best results, quit the host application (such as Photoshop) before you install a plug-in. You may be prompted to input your Administrator password to complete the installation.

Using Luminar with Adobe Photoshop / Photoshop Elements

Luminar is a powerful addition to Adobe Photoshop.
To apply Luminar as a filter, follow these steps:

  • Make sure Adobe Photoshop is open.
  • Open an image you’d like to enhance.
  • Choose Filter > Skylum Software > Luminar…

A new dialog appears to indicate that Luminar is running. Click the Luminar icon in your Dock to switch to Luminar. Make any edits or adjustments as needed in Luminar. Use presets or workspaces to speed up your editing workflow. When done, click the Apply button to send the adjusted image back to Photoshop.

NOTE: Luminar can operate as a Smart Filter in Photoshop. If you designate a Photoshop layer as a Smart Filter, then launch the Luminar plug-in as normal to make edits. When you return to Photoshop you can always double-click on the layer and return to Luminar with all edits intact.

Watch a Luminar video.

Using Luminar with Adobe Lightroom.

Images in Adobe Lightroom can be easily handed off for editing in Luminar.

To use the plug-in from Lightroom, please select the image you would like to edit, at the top menu bar click File > Export with Presets > and choose one of the options under Luminar:

1. Open Original Image - in case you would like to edit a native RAW image.

2. Use TIFF with Lightroom Adjusters - in case you would like to edit the image with the changes applied in Lightroom.


Make any edits or adjustments as needed in Luminar. Use presets or workspaces to speed up your editing workflow. When done, click the Apply button to send the adjusted image back to Lightroom.

Check out the Luminar video.

Using Luminar with Apple Aperture.

Working with Luminar through Aperture is very similar to the way it behaves with Lightroom. To exchange a file from Aperture to Luminar, follow these steps:

  • Make sure Apple Aperture is open.
  • Choose your image(s) in Aperture from the Library that you want to work on with Luminar.
  • Choose Photo> Edit In > Luminar or right-click on the Image and select Edit In > Luminar.


A new image is created and sent to Luminar. Make any edits or adjustments as needed in Luminar. Use presets or workspaces to speed up your editing workflow. When done, click the Apply button to send the adjusted image back to Aperture.

Download the full Luminar User Guide in PDF Format

Luminar support.

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Luminar 2018

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