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How to Get Watermark-free Stock Photos

Liza Brown
Liza Brown Originally published Aug 25, 22, updated Mar 27, 24

Stock images are a valuable resource for any creator. Most companies use them to advertise their merchandise and communicate their brand image. In addition, several stock photo providers allow you to use their creative assets for commercial purposes, such as Unsplash, Shutterstock, and Pixabay. Unfortunately, some do not allow you to download stock images without a watermark. This is because of the unique licenses they offer with their content.

Keep reading to learn more about downloading stock images without watermarks. In addition, you will discover if it is OK to use stock photos with watermarks for commercial use.

In this article
  1. Part1:Why not use stock photos with watermarks?
  2. Part2: How to get watermark-free stock photos?
    1. Method 1: Go to Free stock sites.
    2. Method 2: Make good use of paid stock sites.
    3. Method 3: Shoot your stock photos.
    4. Method 4: Use Filmora to get free stock media resources.
  3. Part3: FAQs:

Part1:Why not use stock photos with watermarks?


This is because it infringes on the image's copyright, which can land you in legal trouble. In addition, stock photo contributors can choose to include watermarks in their images as a way of copyrighting their work. As such, they can command royalty payments from the stock photograph website and other users who download their images.

In addition, the stock photos watermark informs other users who to contact when they want to use your images for personal and commercial use. Therefore, they can sue you for extra damages if you use their images without purchasing the rights.

Another reason why it is not OK to use stock photos with watermarks for commercial use is that it looks unprofessional. Typically, stock photo watermarks cover the middle of the photo, making it near unusable for potential copyright violators. In addition, using a watermarked stock photo for your messaging can harm your brand. This is because it indicates to your audience that you are cheap and do not appreciate other people's hard work.

Part2: How to get watermark-free stock photos?

Now that using stock photos with watermarks can land you in trouble, how can you get watermark-free stock photos for commercial use? Here are some of the methods you should consider.

Method 1: Go to Free stock sites.

Stock photos are images you can use in your personal and commercial works, such as to create your logo or for marketing purposes. Although some sites require you to pay to use their content, there are plenty more that offer their images for free. Below are some of the sites you should check out.

unsplash com

With over 3.2 million images in its library, is one of the most popular free stock sites for the creative industry. The free stock site allows you to download stock images without watermark and use them as you please.

pexels com

Another free stock site to check out is It features images and videos under the Creative Common Zero license, allowing you to use them for personal and commercial services. In addition, the site features different editing tools to help you customize the images to your desired format. For example, you can download stock images without watermarks in different resolutions.

Method 2: Make good use of paid stock sites.

Alternatively, you can also use paid stock sites to download stock photos without a watermark. Most businesses and ad agencies prefer paid stock sites because they allow you access to exclusive images. Depending on your subscription, you can access premium images from some of the industry's best stock photographers. However, some paid sites also include complementary items with their subscriptions. Here are a few examples of where to download free stock photos without a watermark.

  1. Getty Images is giving 10 free stock photo downloads for new users.

Registering a new account on Getty Images gives you ten free stock photos. Regardless of your subscription, you can download high-resolution stock photos from the over 100,000 contributors on the site. For exact details on the offer, visit the Getty Images website.

  1. iStock has an even more free policy.

Another paid stock site that offers even better freebies is iStock. The site offers free stock images, illustrations and video clips with the same benefits as your paid downloads. These include:

      • Flexible usage rights allow you to include the images in your personal and commercial work.
      • Professionally vetted content to ensure high-quality and that it meets all legal requirements for free use.
      • In addition, you receive up to $10,000 legal protection, provided you use the content within the terms of the iStock license.
      • Furthermore, you can avail of the weekly freebies the site offers to registered users.

Please note that you need to have a verified user account to receive the complimentary offers. In addition, the site offers a free one-month trial with 10 free downloads from the Essentials collection.

  1. Adobe Stock

Alternatively, you can get stock images without a watermark from Adobe Stock. Although the site is fairly new compared to the ones above, it now ranks as one of the creative industry's top stock content sites. In addition, the site hosts millions of high-quality curated and royalty-free content from thousands of contributors.

adobe stock

Currently, the site offers a 30-day trial to all new users. The following is what you can expect after registering a new user account on Adobe Stock:

      • You can download 10 images for free during your trial.
      • The site will only charge you after the trial period ends. Then, you will need to pay $29.99 to download 10 assets monthly.
      • You can cancel your account risk-free within thirty days of registering for an Adobe Stock account.

Method 3: Shoot your stock photos.

You can also get stock photos without watermarks by shooting your photos. Unfortunately, not everyone can shoot professional photos worthy of commercial use. However, here are some tips to help you get the right stock image for commercial use.

  • Have the correct light conditions to increase your image detail.
  • Use your camera's auto-adjust settings for the best image quality.
  • Take multiple shots to increase your choices for the best photo.
  • Get signed releases from your subjects to prevent future legal trouble.
  • Share your photos on stock photo sites to allow you access to more images.

Method 4: Use Filmora to get free stock media resources.

get free stock media resources

You can also use Wondershare Filmora to get free stock media resources for your commercial creations. The video editing software features Filmstock, a library of stock content, including images, videos, royalty-free sound effects, and music.

In addition, Filmora integrates,, and many other stock media sites into the software. Here is how you can access free stock media resources through Filmstock.

  • Launch the Filmora Video Editor from your device.
  • Click on New Project to access the project workspace.
  • Tap on the Effects tab and press the Filmstock button.
  • You will then be redirected to the Filmstock website, where you will be prompted to log in to your Wondershare account.
  • Once logged in, you will have access to the creative asset library. In addition, you can access the free content by changing the Library type to Free from the Filmora Effects page.

Unfortunately, all free content you download from Filmstock includes the Filmora tag. In addition, you should not remove the watermark with editing software because it violates copyright law. Instead, you can avoid legal liability by purchasing the Filmora Business Plan.

The subscription allows you to use all effects for commercial use, except the music tracks. However, you will need to contact the company for extended license services once you use the assets in more than 500,000 commercial reproductions.

Part3: FAQs:

1. Do you have to register your details to download stock images without a watermark?

No, you don't. Most free sites do not require you to register an account to access their free stock content. For paid sites like iStock, you will need to register and verify your identity to pass the site's verification process. Once you receive approval, you can access the free content and also upload your creation to receive royalties.

2. Can you cancel your account on free stock image websites?

Yes. Most sites offer you risk-free cancellation during the trial period. In addition, they do not charge you for any download of stock images without a watermark during the trial. However, the number of downloads available varies between stock content providers. For example, Adobe Stock offers you 10 free downloads during the 30-day trial period.

3. What other ways can you use to download watermark-free stock photos?

There are several websites where you can download free stock images without a watermark. In addition, you do not need to register an account to use their services. For example, is an online download tool that allows you to download watermark-free content from the top stock content libraries. Some of the sites you can access include Shutterstock, Alamy, Getty Images, and Adobe Stock.

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Liza Brown
Liza Brown Mar 27, 24
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