How to Remove Braces From a Portrait in Photoshop

by Glenda TaylorUpdated September 28, 2017
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Items you will need

  • Adobe Photoshop

  • Scanned or digital portrait

Turn that frown upside down. It’s easy to become discouraged from having your picture taken when your friends call you "metal mouth" or "brace face." But, with a little help from Photoshop, you can turn that portrait into one where the whole world sees only your pretty smile.


Open your photo in Photoshop and select the Paintbrush tool. Although you can also use the Clone tool, there are only small sample areas of teeth without braces so the Paintbrush works well in this situation.


Select a soft brush and adjust the opacity to 75 percent. Check the size of your brush against the size of the teeth; a good size is approximately ¼ the size of the tooth you are working on.


Start carefully brushing over the braces, sampling the color of the tooth closest to the area you are working on. For example, hold down the Alt key and the Eyedropper tool appears. Select a portion of the tooth closest to the portion where you will remove the brace. Paint over the brace and make another color selection when you move to another part of the tooth.


Remember to paint the tiny wires of the braces between the teeth. In this case, they extend over an area of the gums so we reduce the size of our Paintbrush until it is very small, select a sample color from the gums closest to the wire and carefully paint the wire away.


Resize misshapen teeth by selecting a finished tooth with the Magnetic Lasso tool, making a copy with CTRL+C and pasting it, CTRL+V over the area where the tooth repair is needed. Use your Paintbrush tool to resize the tooth to fit.


Lighten the middle portions of the teeth slightly or darken the edges by selecting the Dodge or Burn tools, respectively, and choosing a low opacity before lightly swiping them over the teeth to make the portrait look real.


Remember that removing braces from a portrait is all in fun. Real braces are wonderful and someday your smile will look gorgeous just because you wore them.

Photo Credits

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About the Author

Glenda Taylor is a contractor and a full-time writer specializing in construction writing. She also enjoys writing business and finance, food and drink and pet-related articles. Her education includes marketing and a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Kansas.

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