7 Best Photo Restoration Services: Prices and Reviews

Photo restoration services

More than one person has discovered an old photograph of some ancestor: grandparents, great grandparents, uncles, aunts, etc. There are many questions that may trigger oneself when looking at a photo: Who was actually he/she? What have they done? Of course, one wants to know more about it.

However, these photographs have years and years of antiquity, and unless it was very well conserved, they may be quite old, damaged by water or light or their colors may be opaque and dismal.

How can I retrieve old photos online?

It is definitely possible to retrieve an old photograph, damaged by the time, light, water or moisture, etc. Online stores and platforms are available with many offers, discounts and different styles of editing, according to the end and the type of correction a picture needs.

There are also apps available online that may be quite useful, but the results sometimes are not the best. If one person does not mind this much, these apps mean an excellent, easy and fast way to retrieve an old picture of some ancestor or relative.

Can old damaged photos be restored?

Digitalization is one of the most useful, flexible and used tools in this century, and in this pandemic context, its use has increased a lot. Several apps are available to use, with the end of obtaining a perfect and professional old photograph restored.

Some of them are:
- Back to Color
- Phowd

- ScanCafe

- WeEdit.Photos

- Image Cleanup

There are also apps available for Android, Apple, Windows and MAC, which are useful, well known and with great results:

- PicsArt 

- Photoshop Express

How can I repair my damaged photos online?

There are several tools available nowadays, especially digital restoration services. These services are at your service to analyze your picture and repair any damage, enlarge its size and improve the quality and colors.

These seven photo restoration services are available in the web:

  1. Back to Color

Back to Color is a company that offers a photo restoration service made by professionals at a fair price. Unlike other companies, the results of this company are quite good: old and damaged pictures become colorful and decent photos, looking realistic and not like a drawing, for example. 

Back to Color makes a digital restoration to old photography according to the customers’ needs: they may ask for color renovation, or a repair for old and damaged photos, or enlarge the size and improve the quality of a photograph.

To make an order and get your photograph restored, you have to send the image you want to fix and specify which kind of repair you want or you need, and then you provide an email for them to send the fixed picture. Once you complete the payment, the designers will receive your order and they will start the job.

When they have finished, they will send your new and restored image to the email you provide, and that is all.

The cost of this service starts from 30USD and it usually takes between 5-7 days to deliver. Customers are quite conformed and pleased with the results, as the pictures do look natural and realistic, and in many cases, the price was accessible for them as well as fair.

  1. Phowd

Phowd is a web page dedicated to photo retouch, old photo restoration and editing in general. This page has two main specializations: edition and improvement of quality through Photoshop and old photo restoration made by professionals.

Here one can make the restoration by oneself, with a simple app provided by the page (of course, the results do not look quite professional or something of great quality). A customer can also hire a “retoucher” available on the web page to restore, retouch or fix an old photograph.

As well as the previous page, in Phowd customers have to send the image they want to restore and make all the necessary specifications. It is also necessary to provide an email account to receive the fixed photograph once finished the job.

In Phowd, one person can be either a customer or signing up to become a “retoucher”. There are dozens of retouchers available to hire (some amateurs, some freelance, among others), and they can show their work, prices, reviews, etc. 

This makes the web page quite interactive indeed, but it may be tedious for those who do not manage technology or only want a simple picture restoration, as one have to sign up, create a new password and a whole profile and then start the process of purchasing or hiring the service. 

  1. ScanCafe

ScanCafe is a web page that provides a general service of restoration in general: photography, video, audio and movies. Depending on what the customer needs, the page will provide different options, prices and benefits. So, one may expect good results from them.

One of the main specialties of ScanCafe is old photo restoration. The process is the same as any digital restoration service: upload the pictures, make any specification, complete the payment and provide an email to receive the fixed pictures.

ScanCafe has several years of experience doing this work and the results in general are quite satisfactory, there may be some average finals though. As they make several and different jobs, this may result in a good option for customers. 

The pricing varies depending on their categorization of job: one picture may require a basic, medium, advanced or extreme restoration, and the cost varies according to this. It can go from 1USD to 99USD. 

As regards delivering, it may be a bit disappointing as it can last up to 10 days or more. 

  1. WeEdit.Photos

With more than 15 years on the market, WeEdit.Photos is a platform with vast experience and a wide range of photograph genres to edit. Their work is indeed efficient as well as fast.

Within the idea of photo restoration, WeEdit.Photos puts much more emphasis on the details, such as blemishes or scratches in the pictures. The results from this service are quite satisfactory. It means indeed a good option to hire in case one needs this service.

From basic to advanced, this platform offers different levels of restoration and the pricing of course varies depending on the complexity of the repair.

The delivery takes between 3-7 working days, depending on the amount of photographs the customer sends and the difficulty of them to mend.

  1. Image Cleanup

This platform is specialized in photo restoration, photo manipulation, image clipping and editing in general. Image Cleanup offers services for e-commerce stores and professional photographers, made by professional designers.

On their web page, they assure to make a fast turnaround, as in the case of a standard edition, the delivery takes 24 hours. However, many customers have complained quite a lot about this, as in some cases the company took up to 14 days to give the photography back.

They also guarantee privacy and respect for your pictures, assuring that these will not be shared with someone else. Such clarification seems important to give, as one does not know at all whether their pictures are safe or not. Therefore, if someone privacy triggers any customer, this platform looks a good option.

How can I improve old photos for free?

In case one person does not find necessary or does not want to hire a professional designer, they can perfectly do the job of editing and restoring old and/or damaged pictures.

These two apps are available for Android and Apple as well as for Windows and MAC. Of course, it is necessary to clarify that the results are not that good, it may took hours, days and even weeks to restore a photograph totally damaged.

However, if one does not mind this, there are two well-known and easy to use apps:

  1. PicsArt

Unbelievably, PicsArt does work to restore, fix and edit in general old and damaged pictures. As many people know, PicsArt counts with a free and a premium version. One would normally suggest purchasing the last one, as it counts with much more tools to work and edit.

However, one must be careful about this. In PicsArt, there is the fine line between having a realistic edited picture and a drawing-like picture. If someone looks for something realistic and professional, this app is not recommended at all.

In this case, the image has recovered the colors and looks more modern. However, it seems more like a drawing or a painting, rather than an actual picture.

  1. Photoshop

Of course, Photoshop is for excellence the app used for this kind of edition. Moreover, many platforms mentioned here make use of this app for their job, and it provides excellent results. It seems rather obvious that one can make their own edition with patience, practice and a lot of time.

Unlike PicsArt, Photoshop is in fact a specialized tool and the results are professional indeed. However, if someone does not manage this app or has little knowledge about it, it may be catastrophic, tedious or terribly frustrating when editing and restoring some pictures. Unless you are a professional designer, Photoshop may be a hard tool for you.

On YouTube, there are several tutorials, well explained and detailed, that will definitely help those interested in editing this type of pictures by themselves.

Photo restoration services: prices

How much does it cost to restore an old photo?

In the case of the platforms such as Back to Color, WeEdit.Photos, etc. the price may vary depending on the type of restoration and fix the picture requires. 

  • Basic restoration (correct color, brightness, resize, etc.) costs between 3USD to 18USD per photo.
  • Medium restoration (which includes few clean-ups, minor enhancements and some little changes in the background) costs between 10USD to 30USD per photo.
  • Advanced restoration (including skin retouch, creative manipulation and old photo restoration) costs between 25USD to 50USD per photo.

Regarding apps like PicsArt and Photoshop are free in their basic version, but in case of needing an old photo restoration, one would definitely need the premium version in both apps. The cost of this service goes from 10 USD.

  • Photo restoration services: reviews

  • These services have all the very same purpose: restoring and fixing old photographs. However, they are very different from each other, as each platform has a marked style to edit and different ways of working (such as delivering, ways of payment, etc.)

    Most of them make a turnaround that lasts between 3-7 days. However, some platforms take much more time than expected, even up to 14 days.

    In general, all these web pages offer a very good result. Pictures indeed are saved and improved. Some of these platforms have an average editing, but this is relative compared with the type of photo damage, the quality, the available tools, among other factors.

    There are lots of offers, prices, reviews, opinions and images to check, compare and choose. Definitely, it is the best moment to recover these images and memories of those who are not present. 

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