I have opened a jpg file in Photoshop CS6 and have converted it from RGB to CMYK (it's going to be printed in a booklet), and I am now trying to edit out the red eyes using the red eye tool. When I try to do this, it gives me an error message saying it could not use the tool because it only works in full color modes. I have never encountered this before, and I cannot figure out the reason it's happening on this file. It's clearly already in a full color mode. All 4 CMYK channels are listed. Can someone help me out and explain what I'm missing here to enable this tool to work?

Here is what I'm seeing:

Photoshop Image Screenshot

1 Answer 1


Use the red eye tool on the image before converting it to CMYK. After you've edited the RGB version to your liking, then flatten (Layer > Flatten Image) and convert it to CMYK.

Converting to CMYK is always the last thing I do, before saving my image to a TIF (for print). I just did some research and it appears that this is also what Adobe recommends:

Use the CMYK mode when preparing an image to be printed using process colors. Converting an RGB image into CMYK creates a color separation. If you start with an RGB image, it’s best to edit first in RGB and then convert to CMYK at the end of your editing process.

  • This seems to be working, thank you! Strange that I've never encountered it before in my process. I will keep this in mind for future editing!
    – SJF
    Dec 14, 2016 at 16:43

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