How to change brush size and hardness in Photoshop with the keyboard (example)

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Philippe Gloaguen
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To get the most out of your Photoshop application, you need know all the tricks we can use in this application. For this reason, today we will explain how to change the size and hardness of the brush in Photoshop with the keyboard, to move you faster.

This way, you can create and edit brushes in Photoshop, to give the your design un unique touch . So, keep an eye out for the next tutorial, so you can learn how to use Photoshop shortcuts to increase brush size and hardness.



Shortcuts for brushes while working in Photoshop

Let's say we're going to work with a luminosity mask and we have to make some changes with the brush , to make some stretches. But now we will have to go to tools, select the brush and paint in black or white, to give different tones and even change the size.

You may be wondering, isn't there an easier way to make these changes? And it is true that it can be a little annoying, coming and going to the toolbar, change the size, hardness or the colors of the brush.

Next, we will show you how to change brush size and hardness in Photoshop with the keyboard. This way, this way, it can be easier work with Photoshop , even change the crosshair cursor to a brush in just a few steps.

Major changes to the Photoshop brush

The brush needs to make some major changes to work with it, such as increasing the size, hardness and change opacity . While these changes are commonly made from the brush toolbar, it can be a little annoying when there is a lot of work to be done.



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Even when we install the best brushes in Photoshop, we still need to make these changes for work with this tool , in our skins.

Change the brush size with the keyboard

With the brush you can use shortcuts with one hand, to facilitate the work of painting and resizing at the same time. Therefore, to change the size of the brush, whether you want increase or decrease , you need to use the following buttons on the PC keyboard:

  • To increase the size, select the " i "which is close to zero.
  • If you want to decrease the size, press the ( ´ ) which is close to zero.

Change the opacity of the brush with the keyboard

To change the opacity of the brush in Photoshop, we have to use the numeric keypad to gradually adjust the intensity.

  • By pressing a number key, opacity will be changed to one tenth of the digit, example:
  1. 1 = 10%.
  • 3 = 30%.
  • 5 = 50%.
  • 0 = 100%.
  • But, if two number keys are selected at the same time, will indicate opacity , example:
  1. 3 + 5 = 35%.
  2. 7 + 3 = 73%.
  3. 0 + 9 = 9%.

Change the hardness of the brush with the keyboard

Normally, the hardness of the brush is not changed when changes are made to the mask, they are always kept at 0% hardness.



But, if you can change the hardness of the brush , follow the steps below, which we will show you below:

  • To change the hardness we have to make steps similar to that of the opacity, but by selecting the «Shift» key, example:
  • Shift + 5 = 50%.
  • Shift + 3 + 5 = 35%.

Get full control of the brush with the keyboard and mouse

This is an option you will love to use, as it allows you to change the brush to one of its two alternatives, size and hardness. We can achieve this by performing a very easy and useful trick with the keyboard and mouse , which will help us change our brush.


  • Select ALT + Right Mouse Button.
  • Then the cursor will change its shape to that of a circle.
  • Without releasing the buttons, drag the mouse horizontally or vertically.
  • This will change the size and hardness of the brush.
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That's all for today, we hope, you will be able to change the hardness and size of your brush . Even by converting brushes for use in other Photoshop software, you can take advantage of these tips when editing images.

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