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Learn How to Crop a Screenshot on Mac

Detailed guide on "How to Crop a Screenshot on Mac" is designed to help you fully leverage the screenshot capabilities of your Mac.
How to crop a screenshot on Mac

“How to crop a screenshot on Mac” might seem small, but it’s a game-changer for your work and personal projects. Think about it – with just a few clicks, you can grab essential documents, show off parts of presentations, or just capture something cool you see on your screen. And here’s the kicker: cropping these shots just right makes them look even better.

This guide suits you, whether you’re a pro or just starting. We’ll walk you through different ways to crop screenshots on your Mac so they look spot-on. Plus, we’ll dive into what you should think about when picking a cropping method. Sounds helpful, doesn’t it?

How to Crop a Screenshot on Mac

By following various methods or using different tools, you can crop the screenshot on Mac easily. Those are:

Built-In Screenshot App

1. Built-In Screenshot App

Your Mac packs a handy built-in app that’s perfect for taking screenshots. But wait, there’s more! It’s not just about snapping what’s on your screen. This nifty tool also lets you crop those shots, focusing on specific areas you want to highlight. So, regarding “How to Crop a Screenshot on Mac,” you’ve got a secret weapon in your computer.

Best for

  • Quick and straightforward cropping is for the users who prefer native macOS features.
  • And for those who want to install something other than additional software.


  • It’s easy to use, as it’s built into macOS.
  • It offers various screenshot options (full screen, selected portion, specific window).
  • Convenient for basic cropping needs.


  • Limited advanced editing features.
  • Cannot annotate or add detailed notes.
  • Screenshot history can clutter your desktop.

Steps to Crop the Screenshot

  1. Take a screenshot using the Shift-Command-3 (full screen) or Shift-Command-4 (selected

    portion) shortcut.

  1. After capturing, a thumbnail appears in the corner of your screen. Click it.
  2. Click “Crop”
  3. Click and drag to select the area you want.
  4. Click “Done”.              

The built-in app is a convenient option for basic cropping, but if you need more advanced editing, consider other methods like Preview or third-party apps.


2. Preview

Preview might be known as Mac’s go-to image viewer, but it has some tricks up its sleeve. It’s not just for looking at pictures; you can also use Preview to crop your screenshots and do some basic edits. So, when figuring out “How to crop a screenshot on Mac,” don’t forget this versatile tool!

Best for

  • Users who prefer a built-in solution with basic editing capabilities.
  • Users who need quick cropping and minor adjustments or don’t want to install additional software


  • Included with macOS, no need for extra downloads.
  • It supports various image formats, not limited to screenshots.
  • Simple and intuitive cropping tools.


  • Limited advanced editing features.
  • Not ideal for detailed annotations.
  • It may not be suitable for professional image editors due to the lack of additional features

Steps to Crop the Screenshot

  1. Open the screenshot in the Preview app.
  2. Click “Show Markup Toolbar” and then the “Selection” tool.
  3. Click the “Crop” button.
  4. Click “Save” to save your cropped image.

While Preview offers basic cropping, it’s a simple and accessible way to edit screenshots without needing third-party software. For more advanced editing, consider other image editors or specialized apps.

Photos App

3. Photos App

The Photos app on your macOS isn’t just for storing your memories; it’s a multifunctional tool for managing and tweaking your image collection. While it’s often used for sorting photos, this app also comes in handy for cropping and editing screenshots. So, if you’re looking into “How to Crop a Screenshot on Mac,” the Photos app is another excellent resource to explore.

Best for

  • It is suitable for those users who want an all-in-one solution for organizing and editing images.
  • For the people who frequently use the Photos app to manage their photo collection,
  • And for those looking for a simple yet effective cropping option.


  • Seamless integration with macOS and iCloud.
  • It provides tools for both basic and advanced photo editing.
  • It can organize and categorize images.


  • The interface may be complex for those seeking quick cropping.
  • It’s less lightweight than other dedicated cropping tools.
  • It is limited to Mac users with the Photos app.

Steps to Crop the Screenshot

  1. Open the Photos app.
  2. Import the screenshots by selecting “File” and “Import.”
  3. Locate the screenshots in your library. To open, double-click.
  4. Click the “Edit” button.
  5. Select “Crop” from the editing menu.
  6. When you’re done with cropping, click “Apply”.
  7. Save or share the cropped screenshot.

The Photos app is a versatile choice for users who want to combine image organization and cropping within a single application. It’s beneficial for those who prefer to manage their screenshots alongside personal photos in one place. However, it may offer a different level of precision than more specialized cropping tools.


4. Hotkeys

Hotkeys, or keyboard shortcuts as they’re also known, are a slick feature in macOS that offers a fast and efficient way to snap, crop, and tweak your screenshots. You can do all these tasks by pressing a few keys together, boosting your productivity big time. So, when looking into “How to Crop a Screenshot on Mac,” don’t forget these handy hotkeys – they’re real time-savers!

Best for

  • It is for users who prefer a keyboard-centric approach to taking and cropping screenshots.
  • People who value speed and convenience when performing these tasks.
  • And for those who are well-versed in keyboard shortcuts and want to leverage them for screenshots.


  • Instant access to taking screenshots and cropping without the need for additional software.
  • It requires minimal effort and can be much faster than using external applications.
  • Familiar to users who are already comfortable with keyboard shortcuts in macOS.


  • Limited editing capabilities; hotkeys primarily focus on capture and crop.
  • It may need to be more intuitive for users new to keyboard shortcuts.
  • Some actions, like advanced editing, may require additional software.

Steps to Crop the Screenshot

  1. To capture the entire screen, use: (Shift + Command + 3)
  2. To capture a specific section of the screen, use: (Shift + Command + 4). To take a screenshot from a particular window, press the Space bar and select the desired window.
  3. Use the Photos or Preview apps to crop the screenshots
  4. Open the screenshot in the chosen application, select the cropping tool, adjust the frame, and

    save the cropped image.

Hotkeys provide a quick and efficient means to capture and crop screenshots on your Mac, which is especially handy for those accustomed to keyboard shortcuts. However, it’s essential to know that hotkeys offer limited editing features.


5. Touchpad

If you’re a fan of a more hands-on approach, using your MacBook’s touchpad can be an excellent way to capture and crop screenshots. It’s perfect for those with a knack for touchpad gestures and enjoy a tactile working method. So, when diving into “How to Crop a Screenshot on Mac,” consider making the most of your MacBook’s touchpad for a smooth, gesture-based experience.

Best for

  • Users who find touchpad gestures intuitive and convenient for navigation.
  • People who frequently use touchpad-based functions and want to extend this to screenshots.
  • And for those who prefer a hands-on approach to cropping images.


  • Direct manipulation of screenshots using touchpad gestures.
  • There is no need for external hardware or software, as the touchpad is built into Mac laptops.
  • Allows for a tactile and precise way to crop screenshots with pinch and zoom gestures.


  • Limited to Mac laptops with touchpads, excluding desktop users.
  • Gestures might not be as precise as using a mouse or stylus.
  • Advanced editing features may require additional software.

Steps to Crop the Screenshot

  1. Capture a screenshot using keyboard shortcuts or any preferred method.
  2. Open the screenshot in an image editing application like Preview or Photos.
  3. Select the cropping tool in the application.
  4. Utilize the touchpad to navigate and make precise adjustments to the crop frame.
  5. Save the cropped image when satisfied with the selection.

Cropping screenshots with the touchpad is a tactile and intuitive approach, ideal for Mac laptop users. It allows for direct manipulation of screenshots using familiar gestures, enhancing precision. However, it’s limited to devices with built-in touchpads and may not offer the same level of accuracy as a mouse or stylus. Advanced editing requires additional software.

Polarr Photo Editor, a third-party photo editing software, stands out with its versatility and ease of use. Although it’s available on multiple platforms, not just macOS, it boasts solid capabilities for cropping screenshots. So, when exploring “How to Crop a Screenshot on Mac,” Polarr Photo Editor is a powerful option worth considering.

Best for

  • Users who seek a professional-grade photo editor with cropping features.
  • And for those who value advanced editing tools in addition to cropping.
  • It is also for creatives and photographers who require precise control over image adjustments.


  • Extensive photo editing capabilities, including filters, adjustments, and effects.
  • User-friendly interface suitable for beginners and experts.
  • Available as both a web and desktop application for cross-device access.


  • Some advanced features may require a subscription.
  • It must be more impressive for users who only need essential cropping functions.
  • Requires installation if using the desktop version.

Steps to Crop the Screenshot

  1. Open the Polarr Photo Editor application on your Mac.
  2. Go to “File” and click “Open”. Import the screenshot you decided to crop.
  3. Open the “Crop” tool from the editing panel when the image is loaded.
  4. Select the desired aspect ratio for cropping or use the freeform crop tool.
  5. Adjust the cropping area by dragging the corners or edges.
  6. Fine-tune the crop by centering the subject or making precise adjustments.
  7. Click “Apply” to confirm the crop.
  8. Save or export the cropped screenshot to your preferred location.

Polarr Photo Editor is an excellent choice for Mac users who want advanced editing features alongside cropping. It’s particularly beneficial for those who work with various images and require professional-grade editing capabilities. However, it may be more complex for users seeking straightforward cropping without advanced editing options.

Scribe is a unique process documentation app that simplifies capturing and cropping screenshots, especially for Mac users. Its standout feature is the automatic creation of step-by-step guides based on your actions, making even complex processes easy to follow. So, regarding “How to Crop a Screenshot on Mac,” Scribe is an ideal tool that offers more than just basic functionality.

Best for

  • Professionals who regularly need to document processes, create guides, or share annotated screenshots.
  • Users seek a tool beyond basic cropping to offer dynamic process documentation.
  • Collaborative teams seek efficient and effortless knowledge sharing.


  • Time-saving, as it can rapidly record and document complex processes.
  • Automatically creates step-by-step guides with annotated screenshots.
  • It facilitates seamless collaboration through shared guides.
  • Available as a web extension and desktop application for flexibility.


  • While excellent for process documentation, it may need more than simple screenshot cropping.
  • Users focused solely on cropping may prefer dedicated tools.
  • Scribe’s advanced features require a learning curve.

Steps to Crop the Screenshot

  1. After installing Scribe, open the application.
  2. Navigate to the Scribe icon
  3. Select “Start Recording”
  4. Record the screening process you wish to capture. Don’t stress over errors; they can be edited later.
  5. After you’re done with the recording, click the “Stop” button. You can find it within the same menu.
  6. Scribe will create a how-to guide in the browser for additional editing and sharing.

You’ve successfully cropped your screenshot using Scribe.

Scribe is a powerful tool for Mac users who need to efficiently capture and document complex processes. Its ability to create step-by-step guides can significantly improve productivity and knowledge sharing in professional settings. However, Scribe’s advanced features may be more than necessary for those seeking a simple screenshot-cropping tool.

Movavi Screen Recorder is a multifaceted tool tailored for Mac users, focusing on capturing and editing screen recordings. Beyond its primary role as a screen recorder, it comes packed with potent editing features. This makes it an invaluable asset for cropping and refining screenshots. So, in your journey of “How to Crop a Screenshot on Mac,” Movavi Screen Recorder offers more than meets the eye.

Best for

  • Users need a multifunctional tool for both screen recording and screenshot editing.
  • Individuals are looking for a user-friendly interface and a range of editing options.
  • And for those who require basic cropping along with additional screenshot editing capabilities.


  • Intuitive and user-friendly interface.
  • Capable of capturing and cropping screenshots and recording screens.
  • Offers a range of editing tools, including adding text, shapes, and effects.
  • It supports multiple output formats for convenience.


  • Screen recording-oriented might make it bulkier for those seeking screenshot cropping.
  • Advanced features may be optional for users focused on basic cropping.

Steps to Crop the Screenshot

  1. Download and install Movavi Screen Recorder on your Mac.
  2. Open the application and select “Screenshot” from the main menu.
  3. Click “Screenshot,” then choose between capturing the whole screen or a custom-sized cropped screenshot.
  4. In the screenshot editor, locate and click on the cropping tool.
  5. Adjust the cropping frame to the desired size and position.
  6. Save the cropped screenshot in your preferred format or share it directly.

Movavi Screen Recorder is a handy tool for Mac users who need screen recording and screenshot editing capabilities. It offers a straightforward interface and an array of editing tools, making it suitable for users who want to crop screenshots and perform additional edits. However, for those solely focused on basic screenshot cropping, it might offer more features than needed.

How to Crop a Screenshot on Mac

Opting for the Ideal Method

Choosing the Best Approach on how to crop a screenshot on Mac is given below:

User Friendly: Unlike Windows, MacOS has great built-in photo editing tools. They’re intuitive and easy to use. You can keep your Mac clean and optimized with these tools.

Features: MacOS has built-in photo editing tools that are simple to use and offer essential functions. But, if you need advanced editing features such as annotating or sharing, consider using Photoshop or other third-party software.

Price: MacBook’s MacOS comes with native photo editing tools and is free. However, you may need to pay for third-party software like Photoshop.


Mastering the skill of cropping screenshots on your Mac can be a game-changer, boosting both your productivity and the way you communicate. You’ve got various choices, from using the tools built into your Mac to exploring third-party software or even trying innovative methods.

Cropping is crucial to honing in on the most essential parts of an image, making your documents and presentations more visually appealing and engaging. It’s a straightforward technique, but don’t underestimate its power to make a big difference in your professional and personal projects.

Consider what you need as you delve into these various methods and tools. Each option has its own set of advantages and drawbacks. Find the one that fits your workflow like a glove. Whether starting with a Mac or a seasoned pro, getting the hang of “How to Crop a Screenshot on Mac” can level up your digital communication and documentation skills.



Mahfuz M

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