[Tested] How to See through Black/White Marker on iPhone

See through black marker on iPhone

Black or white marker is frequently used to help people hide personal and sensitive information before sharing an image or screenshot with others or uploading it to social channels like Facebook, Instagram, etc. We can easily add a black or white marker to an image or screenshot on an iPhone with the Markup tools built into the Photos app.

Due to that, you may have questions like “Is it possible to see through the markers on my iPhone”, “How can I uncover the blacked-out or white-out image?” or “Are there any methods I can use to prevent my image with a black or white marker from being revealed”. Keep reading and you will get the answers you want.

1. Can You See through the Black/White Marker on iPhone?

It is possible but it depends on the image itself. Adjusting the image’s exposure, brilliance, highlights, shadows, contrast as well as brightness with a photo editing app can help you see through the black or white marker.

What will influence the results? The thickness of the black or white highlighter matters, if the marker is not that thick then one can just make out the information obscured by the marker by editing the image using some of the 6 adjustment tools.

The colors of the text, the background, and the marker (highlighter) make a big difference. For example, it is more difficult to see through a blacked-out image if the text has a light color and the background has the same light color as well. It is easier only if the text under the black marker has a dark color while its background is light-colored.


1.1. How to See through Black Marker on iPhone

There are various editing tools in place to help you see something scribbled out by the black marker on your iPhone. You can just use the Markup tools inside the Photos app on your iPhone. To see the highlighted text:

  • Open the blacked-out image using the Photos app on your device.
  • Click the Edit option on the top right side of your screen.
  • Adjust Brilliance to 100, Shadows to 100, and Brightness to 100 as well.
  • If you can’t still see through the black marker, adjust the Exposure to 100, the Highlights to 100, and the Contrast to -100.
  • Zoom in a little bit to be able to see through the black marker on your iPhone.
edit image in photos app on iphone

Remember that the above steps may not work for every image. You need to change the adjustment scale from -100 to 100 to see the differences. Sometimes you need to use all the adjustment tools, but sometimes just some of them are enough. It is recommended that you adjust the scale slowly to see the effect.

For example, I have a blacked-out image below.

Blacked-out image

How do I see under blacked-out text on my iPhone? I’ll show the scales I set for the adjustment tools.

  • Exposure: 100
  • Brilliance: -41
  • Highlights: -100
  • Shadows: 100
  • Contrast: –100
  • Brightness: 63

This is what the image looks like after changing the adjustment tools according to the above scales.

Uncover blacked-out image

Another tip is that you can repeat the adjustment if part of the text is uncovered but not the entire text. Sometimes, some parts of the obfuscation layer are thicker, so you need to repeat the steps.

1.2. How to See through White Marker on iPhone

To see something scribbled out by a white marker, you can also use the adjustment tools of the Photos app. The steps to see through the white marker are as follows:

  • Use the Photos app to open the image highlighted with a white marker.
  • Click the Edit option to get the choices to adjust the marker on your image.
  • To remove the white marker on the image, you can try to adjust Brilliance to 100, Exposure to 100, Highlights to 100, Shadows to 100, Contrast to -100, and brightness to -100. Remember this doesn’t work for every photo.
  • After the adjustment, you should now be able to see through the white marker on your iPhone.

Here is the original image. I wrote “just for test. Just for test” on it and the text was white out.

iMage with white marker

I edited the image to uncover the white-out text. Here is the image after I adjusted Brilliance to -100, Exposure to 100, Highlights to 33, Shadows to -51, Contrast to 46, and brightness to -57. Enlarge the picture and you can see the words under the white marker clearly.

See through white marke on a imager

Please also note that the above adjustments are not fixed for every image. You need to change the tools slowly according to the specific image.

2. How to Avoid Your Blacked-out, White-out or Scribbled-out Image Being Revealed

To prevent your image with markers from being seen, we have some tips below for you using iPhone’s Markup tools. If you use the Photos app on your iPhone to edit the image, open the image, click the Edit button, and then the 3 horizontal dots, then you will be able to see the Markup option. You can choose different tools there. If you just take a screenshot and want to hide something on it, there will be the Markup tools after the screen capture.

Markup tools on iPhone

2.1. Increase the number of highlighter layers

It is recommended to cover your sensitive information with more than 5 layers of a marker as this will help to overwrite the image colors hence preventing people from seeing through the highlighter. Also, instead of just swiping continuously to add highlighter layers make sure to get your finger off the screen before swiping another layer of the highlighter. This will make the layer thicker and therefore it will be hard to reveal with simple photo edits.

2.2. Use a pen tool

The pen tool is another excellent tool to use if you want to overwrite the background colors on the image, especially when set to 100% opacity.  One layer of this pen is enough to black out information on an image.  However, for better results make sure to cover the information more times to avoid people revealing your information.

UPDATE: The sensitive information hidden by a pen tool may still be revealed by adjusting the value of Brilliance, Exposure, Highlights, and more.

Pen tools on iPhone

2.3. Use the shape tool

You can also use a shape tool to help hide your sensitive information on your iPhone.  To use this tool:

  • On the Markup interface, click on the plus(+) sign at the bottom of the Drawing tool option.
  • Select your preferred shape to use.
  • Place your preferred shape over the text to be highlighted.
  • Click on the icon at the bottom to get more options, for example, fill the shape with black color.
  • Now your personal information will be hidden by the selected shape.
Shape tools on iPhone

No matter whether you are using the pen tool or shape tool, make sure you cover the information more times.

2.4. Use mosaic

Here is another way that you can use on your iPhone to blur your image, hide your sensitive data and prevent people from using it. It is using a third-party application that can add mosaic to the image on which you want to hide something. There are many choices in the App Store, for example, the Blur app. You can find it by searching Blur Photo & Mosaic & Pixel in the App Store. It is compatible with the latest iOS and free to download.

blur app interface

When you move your finger over your image this app will then make a pixelated mosaic. There are options to adjust the size and strength of the mosaic. Also, the app offers users many blur effect filters to use when editing their pictures.

image with mosaic

2.5. Choose the Color Properly

You can use other colors except for white and black to highlight or mark sensitive information. It is recommended that you choose a similar color as the sensitive part and the background of the image. This method ensures that the hidden information remains obscured while others are adjusting the values of Brilliance, Exposure, Highlights, and more.

I hope this article helped you know how to see through a blacked-out text as well as how to prevent others from revealing your hidden texts and images.

Joel Wilson

Joel Wilson

Joel is a fan of technology. He uses both iPhone and Android phones. Being interesting in exploring new features, he likes to share his experiences on how to use the devices in a better way. Because of his enthusiasm for technology, he becomes an "expert" to fix problems with phones and computers.

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