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I have two layers. My primary layer has a mask and the other layer is the one I used for stamp and healing. I want to combine them and retain the layer mask.

enter image description here

As you see from my attempt above, the layer mask disappeared.

I tried approaching it by using a temp layer, moved the mask to it, merged my other two layers and then dragged the mask back to merged layers.

enter image description here

But I think there is a better way, isn't there?

  • @ryan hey man, can you help me? – sajad Oct 30 '16 at 18:17
  • @Vincent ah maybe you know – sajad Oct 30 '16 at 18:17
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    Place the layer without the mask above the masked layer and select it, then merge down. You should get a dialog asking if you want to preserve the mask. This doesn't work if you select multiple layers before merging or if you try to merge down from the masked layer. It's the same when merging layers with Layer styles. If this doesn't work at all, it could be that your PS version is too old. It is possible to make an action that does this, as long as you only want to merge 1 layer with the masked layer. – Joonas Oct 31 '16 at 8:27
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    I don't know if it's possible or not, but you could use a group, put theses two layer in the group, and move mask in order to be on the group instead the of the layer, and merge the two layers? – Larme Oct 31 '16 at 12:59
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    Those pings you did to me, Vincent, and Chris don't work. You can't ping someone in a Question unless they've already commented on it. – Ryan Oct 31 '16 at 20:04
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  1. New Layer
  2. Merge Visible
  3. Move the mask.

Using shortcuts it's very quick....

  1. Command/Ctrl-Option/Alt-Shift-N

  2. Command/Ctrl-Option/Alt-Shift-E

  3. Move the mask (Hold the Option/Alt while moving to copy the mask)

This also can retain the original layers so it's non-destructive.

  • Unless I'm missing something creating a new layer isn't needed – Ryan Oct 31 '16 at 20:05
  • Create the new layer so you don't overwrite existing layers. You can merge visible on the current layer, but then you overwrite whatever may already be on that layer. – Scott Oct 31 '16 at 20:51
  • Your shortcuts inclusion of Alt isn't for Merge Visible its for Stamp Visible and already puts it on a blank layer :) – Ryan Oct 31 '16 at 20:56
  • It is not clear from your answer to what layer the 2. step is applied. – Green May 7 '17 at 3:03
  • I'm sorry, 1-2-3 should be abundantly clear. Do the steps in order. Layers will be correctly highlighted. – Scott May 7 '17 at 5:03
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Select just the top empty layer (layer 2 in your image) then Ctrl+E or merge down and it will show you a window where it would ask you if you want to keep the mask or not.

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