A photo of a person riding a horse. The person and horse has been selected using the Lasso tool.


How to use the Lasso tool in Adobe Photoshop.

Giddyup, partner — it’s time to learn how to lasso your work. Discover this versatile and effective selection method.

What does the Lasso tool in Photoshop do?

Photoshop gives you dozens of selection tools, but for more creative selections, the Lasso tool is one of the best.

A photo of a cow. The cow has been selected using the Lasso tool.

Catch what you need.

The regular Lasso tool is a freehand selection tool, which means it won’t automatically snap to the edge of objects or try to predict what you want to select. Wherever you lay your lasso, that’s where it will stay. However, Photoshop will help to complete your shape by connecting small gaps between your end-point and starting point.

A photo of an old town with a dirt road and wood buildings. The buildings have been selected using the Lasso tool.

Easily modify selection options.

Like many Photoshop selection tools, the Lasso tool has additional functionality to help you to get things done smarter and faster. Add to, subtract from, and intersect with existing selections, so you can precisely select your work how you need to.

A photo of a perched bird. The bird has been selected using the Lasso tool and Feathering setting.

Tread as lightly as a feather.

Feathering and anti-alias settings help you to determine how rough your lasso is, so you can play with softer or sharper edges. High feather gives you more wiggle room for fuzzier shapes and anti-aliasing keeps your lines smooth.

An image of an old wooden barn. The barn has been selected using the Polygonal Lasso tool.

Stick to the lines.

Adjust how you do freehand selection with the Magnetic Lasso tool or the Polygonal Lasso tool. The former uses the power of AI to try to snap to the edges of an object, while the latter creates polygonal shapes by turning your freehand lines into straight lines.

When to lasso.

Want to make selections with the Lasso tool but not sure what projects work best? Try these ideas.

An example of a composite image created using Lasso tools.

Cut out a unique selection.

The different lasso tools are designed to capture selections that don’t fit within rectangular or oval selections or represent a clear subject or object that can be selected using AI. Trace more imaginative smooth shapes or create rougher selections for interesting composite images

A photo of a horse that has been selected and separated using the Select and Mask feature.

Select like a painter.

With Select and Mask features, you can hop into a separate selection environment where you can paint and edit your selections like an artist, using the Lasso tool and other Photoshop selection tools in tandem.

How to make a Lasso tool selection.

Lassoing what you need to work with is an easy three-step process.

1. Choose it:

Select the Lasso tool in the toolbar with your cursor. Click and hold to select the Magnetic or Polygonal Lasso tools.

2. Select it:

Hold and drag to outline the shape of your selection on your canvas.

3. Deselect it:

If you need to make modifications to your selection, you can use Command+D (on Mac) or Ctrl+D (on Windows) to deselect it and start again or click Select and Mask at the top of the screen to fine-tune your selection. You can also hold the shift key to add new selections to your existing one.

Adobe Photoshop

Do more with Adobe Photoshop.

Learn more selection tips and editing tricks.

Dive into these Photoshop tutorials to expand on what you can do with your selections.

An example image of a person's face framed with flowers which has been created using complex selections.

Get more complex.

Make very detailed selections with tools like the Magnetic Lasso and the marquee tools. It’s easier than you might think.


Make a complex selection

An image of a buffalo combined with an image of a natural landscape.

Make two become one.

Combining multiple images into a single one creates a composite effect that adds to the artistry of your work. See how to do it in Photoshop.


Combine images

An image of two people's silhouettes standing in water.

Edit photos until they shine.

Before you make selections, you might need to spruce up individual photos. See how to edit images along a theme or retouch them similarly.


Retouch a photo

A photo of a tropical beach scene with pixelation effect applied.

Go 8-bit in your graphic design.

Emulate the classic look of video games with pixelation effects or blur someone’s face for privacy reasons.


Pixelate an image

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