6 great ideas for designing on Canva for mobile

Canva for mobile

There’s no denying that our smartphones have become an extension of ourselves. Accounting for 65% of all digital media use last year(opens in a new tab or window), we now use our mobiles more often than we use our computers. And quite frankly, it’s not hard to see why. Our smartphones have a serious convenience factor, allowing us to complete virtually any task at the click of a button.

Case in point: Did you know you can use Canva for Mobile to design on the go? Available for iPhones, iPads and Android phones and tablets, the app allows you to create professional looking designs within seconds—and it makes it even easier to send your designs directly to your social media platforms.

Plus, the app has a few cool features of its own that aren’t even available on the desktop version!

Read on for six tips for creating eye-catching designs on Canva’s free mobile app.

01. Play with filters

Smartphones and tablets tend to have better support for filters than desktop programs. This means that Canva for Mobile has an even more extensive range of filters you can use to give the images in your design a distinctive feel.

Better yet, it’s easier than ever to customize these to your liking. Simply select the filter of your choice, then click Advanced to modify settings like the contrast, brightness and saturation. You can also use this feature to add a blurred(opens in a new tab or window) or vignetted effect to your image, or adjust the color.

Here, you can see ‘Mooloolaba’ in action—a filter only available on Canva for Mobile.


02. Font pairing made easy

Choosing fonts that look good together can be a real dilemma. Canva’s professional designers have taken the hard work out of it, by pre-loading the app with hundreds of balanced font pairings, so you can be sure your text’s heading and body don’t clash.

To find a font template, tap the + button in the bottom corner of the app, then tap Text. Here you can browse designer-approved font combinations—there are endless styles available, so you are sure to find something that suits your design.

03. Use the live camera feature

One of the coolest things about Canva for Mobile (that the desktop version doesn’t have) is the live camera feature. You can use this to create striking Instagram and Facebook stories on the fly.

To do this, ensure you have given Canva permission access to your camera. Then, click on an Instagram story or Facebook story template you like. Select the image you’d like to change with your own, then click the Camera. Snap your image and it’s in your design! You can then experiment with your text, colors, and graphics to make it complement your brand.


04. Experiment with graphics and icons

Icons are a fun way to make a design unique. And Canva for Mobile makes it incredibly simple to add them.

When you’re in your design, simply click the plus sign. Next, select Graphics and scroll down to find one you like. You can also use the search function to find something specific. You can play with borders, lines and even emoji-style graphics on photos(opens in a new tab or window). Once you’ve found the one, click it and use your fingers to drag it to where you like in your design. To make it bigger or smaller, use the control handlers.


Another awesome feature in Canva’s iOS app which is not yet available on desktop is Packs. These are sets of graphics with a certain theme like weddings or graphics for your small business. You can purchase these packs to give the graphics in your designs a consistent, uniform feel.

05. Batch your work

Another compelling feature of Canva for Mobile is being able to create multiple pages to design and export them in a single batch, or individually.

So if, for example, you were creating quote graphic tiles for Instagram, you could create multiple versions at once—ready for when you need them. This will not only save you lots of time, but means you won’t have to scramble for content when it’s time to post.

To add an extra page to your design, click the plus button, then click Pages. You can also duplicate pages, by clicking the icon in the bottom left that states the number of pages, selecting the page you want to copy, then pressing the middle icon.

06. Use Siri to search images

Want to locate a specific type of template in Canva for mobile? There’s an app for that!

Or rather, a combination of two apps. If you have an iPhone, you can use Siri voice recognition to locate templates by saying phrases like ‘Search Canva for holiday images’ or ‘Search Canva for wedding invitations.’ This makes it much easier to narrow down the available templates (especially when you're on the go) and find one that’s going to be the perfect fit for your design.


Whether you’re creating social media posts(opens in a new tab or window) while out and about or making some last minute changes to a work presentation(opens in a new tab or window), Canva’s mobile app allows you to create polished designs, anytime and anywhere. Taking these handy design tips on board will make your mobile design experience a breeze and help take your creations to the next level. Ready to get started? You can download Canva’s free app for your smartphone or tablet here(opens in a new tab or window). It’s available for both iOs or Android.

Related articles

See all

Bring your ideas to life in minutes

Express yourself with the world's easiest design program.