6 Free Vintage Photo Effects Photoshop Actions

Below you’ll find 6 really cool vintage effect Photoshop actions to help you achieve some great color effects in your photos. These Photoshop actions are fully reversible and better yet, they are adjustable.

How to use these actions:

  1. To load the actions, go to your Actions panel in Photoshop and click on the “flyout menu” on the top right corner of the panel. Select “Load Actions…” and then navigate to where you downloaded the action on your hard drive. Select the actions you want to load into your Actions Panel.
  2. Open the image onto which you would like to apply an action.
  3. Create a duplicate layer of your background layer.
  4. Go to your actions panel and press the Play button with your selected action highlighted.
  5. To adjust the effects, click on the corresponding Adjustment Layer in your Layers Panel. Enjoy!
  6. To reverse all the effects, delete all the layers except the background layer.

All the actions we’ve included work well on most types of photographs. However, for best results, we suggest that you make sure that your photos are well-exposed and the tone and white balance are to your liking before you apply these Photoshop Actions.

This is the “before” image that we’ll be using to show off the effects of these freebie Photoshop actions. It is a photo of my lovely friend who was kind enough to let us use her image.

1) Vintage Polaroid

This Photoshop action gives your photos a somewhat desaturated look and gives the shadows a blueish tint. It mimics the look of those lovely instant Polaroids.

2) High Contrast Black & White

This Photoshop action gives your photos a very high contrast black and white look. It mimics the look of classic black and white photographers in the first half of the 20th century.

3) Vintage Red Push

This action gives your photos a red tint and desaturates the colors of your photos a little bit. It gives your photos that classic poster look.

4) Rock and Rolla

This action gives your photos a “on-the-road” feel. Much like the feeling you would get following a rock band on tour.

5) Blue Dream

This action does not require you to create a duplicate layer of your background layer. Just press play in the actions panel and you’ll get a dreamy, surreal, photo. This works especially well with landscapes and still life photos.

6) Expiration

This action mimics the look of shooting with expired rolls of film. The colors are desaturated and the contrast is lowered to give your photos that classic look.

All of these actions are fun to use. However, always remember that these actions won’t work perfectly with every single photo. Always make sure that the photo you want to use is well-exposed before you apply these actions.

These actions are provided for you to use in your personal and commercial projects. However, please do not redistribute the files without expressed consent from Design Instruct staff.

Download Source Files

  • File type: .zip
  • Number of files: 6


  • Nice post and great effects – I will try them out. For now I have share you great post!

  • Casey Dennison

    These are pretty dope, Issac. I especially like the “Rock and Rolla”, “Vintage Red Push”, and the “Vintage Polaroid”.

  • acap

    thanks isaac. i’m from malaysia. i had follow ur step but confused about duplicate. i had maked 3 ways for the try. all the 3 ways gave a different result. n i hope u will explain again how to start after open image. sorry if disturb. anyway thanks ya

  • acap,

    When you open an image in Photoshop, that image will be on a background layer which is locked. You can duplicate that layer by: 1) in the layers panel, click and drag the layer that says “Background” onto the “New Layer” button and then release the button. 2) right-click on the layer in the layers panel and then click “Duplicate layer…”

    Once you have the duplicate layer on top of the background layer, all you have to do is go to the actions panel and click the play button of the action you want to apply to your photo.

    Let me know if this helps. If not, please send us an email with screenshots at designinstruct@gmail.com.


  • ESanz

    Stunning! Thank you for all the great resources on this site. ? love it all!!!

  • Spinx Inc.

    This is the perfect tutorial to give vintage photo effects by loading actions in the Photoshop because it will help to give extraordinary, different and modern look to the original image and graphic.

  • Awesome collections of actions 🙂 Like them all)) vintage is so popular nowadays 🙂

  • Wonderful set of actions, thank you for sharing Isaac 🙂

  • Great set of actions Isaac, thanks for sharing them

  • Really nice collection 🙂 Would love to have more 😀

  • Thanks. Nice set of actions. Going to play around now with them. 😉

  • Wow…. great effects, really amazing i like the Pink Push the most.

  • I like the vintage red push effect the best, it has a real warmth surprising how the same photo can give off such a different vibe with each effect.

  • Hey, Love the effects….

    I realy like the high contrast Blk&White….. It make the pic look profesional….


  • Thanks for posting. Need it for my work…

  • Jay Ruiz

    This is dumb and useless.

  • Kanuta Design

    High contrast black and white is the best!

  • Amazing! Thanks for the file. Am looking for tutorials on logo design, cant find it here, any clues please?

  • Lisa roberts

    Great effect, Good job