How to Delete an Instagram Account and What Will Happen to Your Photos

By Corbin HartwickUpdated on March 9, 2022

Had enough of the shutterbugs on Instagram, and want to shut down your account? Perhaps you need a break from the constant image overload, or you’re stepping away from Instagram or social media altogether like many celebrities to make a statement. If you’ve already tried to delete your account, you might have found that you can’t do it in the Instagram app; you must delete your account on the Instagram website.

In this article, we’ll cover all the important things you need to know about how to delete Instagram accounts, including:

IMPORTANT: If you delete your Instagram account, you will lose everything you contributed, forever! Read these tips below to make sure you understand what will happen when you delete your account

3 important things you NEED TO KNOW before deleting your Instagram account

  1. You will lose everything – anything you had in Instagram, including photos, videos, your profile information, comments, likes, and followers will all be gone, and there is no way to recover them.
  2. You cannot ever have that username again – if you delete your account, you won’t be able to sign up in the future with that same username, even if no one else is using it. You also can’t add your old (deleted) username to a future account.
  3. Instagram cannot re-activate a deleted account – they get rid of all the data, so there is no way for you to recover it, or open up your account again in the future if you change your mind.

As far as Instagram is concerned, once you’re done, you’re done. So, make sure you really want to delete your account. If you want to consider your other options, jump down here to read about temporarily disabling your Instagram account.

How to permanently delete an Instagram account

Pro Tip: You cannot delete an Instagram account using the Instagram app. Make sure you navigate to the Instagram website to get this done. If you want a shortcut to the delete Instagram account page, click here and log into your account.

  1. Go to the Instagram delete account page and sign into your account.
  2. Under “Why are you deleting your account?” select an option from the drop-down menu.
  3. Re-enter your password.
  4. Click Permanently Delete My Account. This will only appear once you have selected a reason for leaving Instagram.
Permanently deleting an Instagram account

If you have more than one Instagram account, make sure you are logged into the correct account before deleting it! If you’re not sure you want to lose everything on Instagram, try temporarily disabling your Instagram account instead.

How to temporarily disable an Instagram account

Pro Tip: Temporarily disabling an Instagram account is a great way to take a break from the service and hide everything on your profile without losing any photos, followers, or anything else you have on your account. To do that:

  1. Go to the Instagram website and sign in.
  2. Click your username in the top-right corner and click Edit Profile.
  3. Scroll down and click Temporarily Disable My Account.
  4. Select an option under the “Why are you disabling your account?” heading.
  5. Re-enter your password and click Temporarily Disable Account.
Temporarily disabling an Instagram account

Now your photos, comments, and likes will all be hidden from other Instagram users until you re-activate your account, which you can do by simply logging back in with your old Instagram account information. As soon as you log in, the account will be live again for everyone on Instagram to see.

Best alternatives to Instagram

If you still enjoy the photo scene but you’re sick of Instagram, check out these sites and apps like Instagram – you might find one you enjoy even more!

  • Flickr – Find the best online photographers on this popular photo storage, editing, and sharing website.
  • VSCO – pronounced like “visco,” this is a great photo editing and sharing app with features just like Instagram, though it focuses more on good photography.
  • Pixlr – Take out the social media aspect of Instagram and use this better photo editing service.

For more details and a longer list, check out our article on the best sites and apps like Instagram.