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How to install brushes in Photoshop?

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  • 3 min read

One of the best things about using Photoshop is the versatility it offers. You can do all sorts of things with the software, and if the hundreds of tools present already aren’t enough, you can add more. 

In this article, we’re going to look at how you can download and install brushes in Photoshop. 

Also read: 9 selection tools in Photoshop explained

How to download Photoshop brushes?

Before we get to installing brushes, you need to download them. There are a lot of third-party websites and marketplaces that either sell or give away Photoshop brushes. These come in an ABR file format.

We strongly recommend that you download your brushes from trustworthy sources. Downloads from shady websites can often include malicious code in the ABR files that can end up infecting your machines. You can get brushes from websites like DeviantArt and Brusheezy.

How to install brushes in Photoshop? | Candid.Technology

More often than not, these downloads will be in a .zip file. It’s recommended that you extract these files from the Photoshop installation directory so you can find them easily later.

By default, it is the C:\Program Files\Adobe folder. Once you’re done with that, we can fire up Photoshop and get to install brushes. 

Also read: How to create a neon sign in Photoshop?

How to install brushes in Photoshop (2020 or higher)?

Installing brushes in newer versions of Photoshop is pretty straightforward. We’ll be doing so from inside the Brushes menu panel. Here’s how.

Step 1: Launch Photoshop, go to Window and make sure Brushes is checked. You should see the brushes panel open up on the right.

How to install brushes in Photoshop? | Candid.Technology

Step 2: Click on the three horizontal bars in the top right of the window and click on Import Brushes.

How to install brushes in Photoshop? | Candid.Technology

Step 3: Navigate to where you extracted the ABR file, select it and click on Load.

How to install brushes in Photoshop? | Candid.Technology

You should now see your brushes appear as a separate group in the brush panel. You can select your brush of choice from here and begin using it just like any of the default Photoshop brushes you were using so far. 

How to install brushes in Photoshop? | Candid.Technology

Also read: What are Blend modes in Photoshop? How are they used?

How to install brushes in Photoshop CC 2019 or older?

If you’re using an older version of Photoshop, you’re going to have to take a different approach to install brushes. We’ll be using the Preset Manager here. 

After launching Photoshop, all you need to do is head over to Edit > Presets > Preset Manager. This will launch the Preset Manager window. From here, click on the Load button and navigate to your brush’s ABR file. 

Also read: How to reset preferences in Photoshop?

Yadullah Abidi

Yadullah Abidi

Yadullah is a Computer Science graduate who writes/edits/shoots/codes all things cybersecurity, gaming, and tech hardware. When he's not, he streams himself racing virtual cars. He's been writing and reporting on tech and cybersecurity with websites like Candid.Technology and MakeUseOf since 2018. You can contact him here: