How to use Channel Mixer to change colours in CMYK

How to use Channel Mixer to change colours in CMYK 1

Hi guys and welcome to my very first blog!

Hope you will find it useful and please experiment with it.

Is going nicely on image product or still life but not so ok with the skin color , try it anyway and feel free to comment and tell me about your results.

Thank you for being here, let’s start!

I will try to explain by steps but if you don’t understand something please comment on the post and I will answer or I will try to make a video for you.

Also if you want the files I will provide a link to them and you can experiment yourself for same results.


  1. Open the file and change the color profile is is not already CMYK – Image/Mode/CMYK Color.
  2. Open the reference color file also and drag it or copy/paste to our main file.
  3. Make a selection for around the lipstick red parts with any selection tool you find more easy, in this case I used the Quick Selection tool and I refined the masks.
  4. Make a Channel Mixer adjustment layer above our main/background file.
  5. Select our background and inspect all the channels to see what is the strongest one, and in our case is Magenta of course because we are playing with reds.
  6. To select every channel separately just click on or use the keyboard keys CTRL or Command (Mac), 3,4,5,6 for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black.
  7. After we identified that the Magenta in our case is the strongest channel just go and discard any color information from every channel but not Magenta and Black ones. To do this just put the slider from 100% to 0% in every channel.
  8. Go to our Channel Mixer and try to match the reference with the background in every channel using just Magenta and slightly tweak if you need with Cyan and Black.
  9. Thas it, happy playing!

Magenta here is the strongest channel when you will inspect every channel.

How to use Channel Mixer to change colours in CMYK 2

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  • Patrick says:
    Apr 11 at 05:20

    In my opinion I would say it would be a lot easier to understand it with images at the steps

    1. Ana-Maria says:
      Apr 11 at 06:35

      I will try to make a video better, you are right 🤗

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