How to Crop (Delete) Pixels on a Single Layer in Photoshop

How to Crop (Delete) Pixels on a Single Layer in Photoshop

Although I will never recommend to crop or permanently delete any pixel when working in Photoshop, there are certain situations when you really need to. In this video tutorial, I will explain to you one of the ways how to crop single layer or in other words how to delete pixels on a single layer without the Eraser Tool.

Video tutorial

Here is my video recording which explains two (actually three) methods to permanently discard pixels on the pixel-based layer in Photoshop.


Hi guys, in this quick tip I will explain to you how to crop or permanently delete pixels on a single layer in Adobe Photoshop without the Eraser Tool.

I will present two methods in this tutorial.

The first method is using selection. Ensure that all pixels on layer are visible. You can do that by pressing Ctrl/Cmd + T to see free transform handles.

Create selection then invert it as needed and lastly hit Backspace or Delete on your keyboard.

The second method is using apply layer mask command.

The first step is to create a layer mask. I will use selection plus Add layer mask button at the bottom of the Layers panel.

The second step is to right click on a layer mask and choose: Apply Layer Mask. That will delete all pixels which weren't visible.

Just to mention that both methods are available with pixel-based layers, do not try to use them with Smart Object layers, shape layers, fill layers and so on because Photoshop will display error message or option will be greyed out.

Let me mention another solution which is Smart Object layer. Smart Object layer will keep original data while content on layer will be visually cropped and you can work only with visible content when, for example, applying some of the Photoshop filters.

Thanks for watching and cheers! If you like my videos please share them with your friends and subscribe to my channel.

Product used in this tutorial:
Adobe Photoshop CC 2018

Erase parts of an image


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