From cinema and editorials to music videos—muted tones have dramatically risen in popularity. For those of you wondering “what is a muted tone?”, let us explain. A muted tone is one that has been dulled by mixing it with other colors, such as black, gray, brown, or white. This creates a color that isn’t bright or saturated. Instead, it’s subdued, soft, or dimmed down.
So, how can you create a muted color effect with your own imagery? Thankfully, our Photo Editor’s wide range of muted color effects – located within the Effects section – have got you sorted. Just think of them as your very own muted color palette generator!
Our Top 5 Photo Effects for Muted Color Tones
There’s a lot to love about muted tones in photography. Muted colors tend to have a calming effect, as they’re not as jarring as vivid or bright colors. This gives viewers a chance to slowly take in everything within a photograph and appreciate all of its details.
Muted colors can also symbolize different things, depending on whether they’re light-toned or dark-toned. Dark muted tones can represent emotions such as loneliness or gloominess, or even add intrigue and mystery. Light muted tones, on the other hand, can symbolize nostalgia, youth, or positive emotions, such as joy and hope.
Without further ado, here are 5 of our favorite muted tone photo effects to inspire your next project.
Analog Tones 6
The Analog Tones category of photo effects mimics the look of images captured with an analog camera and roll of film. Unlike its digital counterpart, analog photography produces a unique and unpredictable image, which adds to its charm.
For this photo, we applied Analog Tones 6, not once, but twice, for a more muted effect. The result? Bright yellows and blues are now toned down to present a more balanced image.
Analog Tones 10
Another Analog Tones photo effect that can work wonders for adding a muted tone to your photography is Analog Tones 10. In this image, it adds a more subtle muting of color, which works beautifully with the subject and surrounding natural imagery.
By adding a lighter muted tone like this, we’ve been able to add a dreamier hue to this photo of a horse.
Black and White 3
All of our Black and White photo effects also work wonderfully as a muted color palette generator for your images. The trick is to adjust the effect to only 50-75% strength in order to dull and deepen your existing hues.
Take this photo, for example, in which we added the Black and White 3 effect at half-strength. It instantly created a moodier and less saturated look, without removing all of the color in our image.
Old Photo 3
Old, antique photos are known for their naturally muted color palette of brown, black, gray, or white. The Photo Editor’s collection of Old Photo effects are therefore perfect for replicating this look, while still keeping some of the hues present in your photo.
For this image, we applied Old Photo 3 at half-strength to achieve a muted color palette with an alluring haziness at the forefront. The result is a dreamier image that’s reminiscent of vintage travel photography.
If you’re looking to dramatically mute your color palette while adding a dreamlike nostalgic vibe to your image, the Viewfinder 5 effect is highly recommended. It preserves the original color around the outside of the photo, while adding a much lighter tone over the remainder of the image.
The result is incredibly dreamlike with a matte-inspired appearance. This effect is super strong too, so we ended up applying it at 75% strength.
Muted Tones for Maximum Effect
Ready to subdue and soften your photography? Adding muted color tones to your images is the perfect way to modernize them and add a darker or dreamier mood. With the wide range of muted color-toned effects available in BeFunky’s Photo Editor, creating the most stunning muted photos just became a whole lot easier.
Go on, try our muted color tone effects for yourself!