Have you ever worked with a library-linked smart object? If you drag something from the Libraries panel (Window>Libraries) to your canvas, you’ll see a little cloud icon on that layer in the Layers panel. Be careful with these, because if you make any changes to the object, it will update the library and every document that’s linked to it (next time you open them). You can easily keep the layer as a smart object, but convert it to an embedded smart object. The embedded smart object will still look and function the same, but it’s not linked to the library, so any changes you make to it in your document will only apply to that instance of the smart object. It’s really simple to do: Choose the layer with the smart object and go to the Properties panel (Window>Properties). Click the button that says Embed. That’s it! You can skip this whole process entirely by holding down the Option (PC: Alt) key as you drag the object from the library. Photoshop will create embedded smart objects instead, or create layers for items that aren’t smart objects. 

This tip originally published in Colin Smith’s “Photoshop Tips” column in the February, 2023 issue of Photoshop User magazine.