An easy trick to give your photos a more magical or fantasy look is to apply a matte effect to it. This effect is a sort of misty layer over a photo, that balances out the differences in contrast and can help to blend different colours together. I personally use the matte effect often, sometimes very slightly, when I combine (photo-bash) photos or finish digital painting. In this tutorial I will show you a way to quickly add a matte effect to your photos in just two easy steps.
In the image below is an example of a photo to which the matte effect will be applied to. The first thing to do is to add an "Exposure" over the photo. You can find this in your "Adjustments" tab. If you do not see this tab, you can activate it via the menu Window >> Adjustments. I personally use this panel a lot for adding effects.
Make sure you have selected the top layer of your photo, so the effect will go over that layer. Then click on the icon with the "+/-". This will automatically create a new exposure layer.
When you click on the new exposure layer, you can adjust the Properties of the "Exposure". The second option "Offset" will increase or decrease the matte effect. So, the higher the number is, the more matte effect will be applied. You can play around with the number to get the result you want.