Instagram is by far the best way to share pictures and videos with people online. It has become the modern-day equivalent of keeping photo albums. You can collect, look back, decorate, and share your memories all in one place. But, things change, and there are plenty of memories you’d rather not keep around.
Sometimes those memories come in batches, and you don’t have time to sort through them one by one. Unfortunately, Instagram is not great about letting you delete more than one post at a time. Whether you’re trying to erase all evidence of an ex, destroy some embarrassing photos of yourself in middle school, or trying to clean up your timeline before someone looks at it, there are thankfully ways to work around Insta’s frustrating limitations.
1. Old Reliable (One at a Time)
It’s not glamorous, and not always fast, but sometimes the best thing you can do is just scour your timeline for the posts you want to delete. This technically isn’t a trick, you’re still doing things the hard way. But, if you only have a small number of posts you want t get rid of — say ten or less — then it’s much quicker to do it manually than bother with any of these other methods.
It should be noted that, for whatever reason, Instagram only allows you to delete posts while you are in the smartphone app. Granted, you’re more likely to be using Insta from your phone anyway, but let’s say you discovered some embarrassing pictures while you can’t get to your phone right away. There is still a way to use the computer version of Instagram to hunt and be rid of specific posts.
Step 1: Make up a hashtag that literally no one else is using. It needs to be easy to remember for you to find later though.
Step 2: Find a post you want to delete. Tap the options dots on the post, and edit the hashtags. Add in your ridiculous hashtag to mark the post.
Step 3: Repeat Step 2 as necessary until you have marked all the posts you are trying to remove.
Step 4: When you finally have access to a smartphone again, search for your weird hashtag. If you did this right, the only posts that pop up should be the ones you marked. Then, delete the marked posts.
It’s a little tedious and time consuming, but sometimes it’s the only option at your disposal.
2. Bring in the Cleaners (Third-Party Apps)
This the more heavy-duty option, for when you have too much of a mess for you to pick through it one at a time. Instagram does not have any partner app designed for this specific purpose, so you’ll have to choose from several third-party apps. Weirdly, there don’t seem to be universal apps available to both Android and iOS users.
For the people with Apple smart devices, Cleaner for Ins has a ton of good reviews and tutorials online. The ap is pretty straightforward, though, so you probably won’t need to look up how to use it. It has the added functionality of also letting you mass unfollow, mass block, and mass unlike. There are some reports of it making your phone glitchy if you leave it on there for too long, so you should probably delete the app after you’ve done what you needed to do.
For Android and Google phone readers, you’re gonna want to check out Mass Delete for Instagram. It has most of the same functionality as Cleaner for Ins, so you can also get rid of a bunch of followers if you need to after deleting your posts. Mass Delete does have the added feature of supporting multiple accounts, so it’s a great way to curate both your Insta and Finsta.
Since these are third-party apps, you’re going to want to exercise caution in general. Besides that, it also means not all of them are going to work for everyone. The two listed apps worked well, but they might not for your exact case — type of phone, software version, provider, etc. Don’t worry, most of them are capable of mass deleting at the bare minimum, so you just need to find one that works for you.
This is another case where you have to use your smartphone or tablet because these apps don’t work correctly on computers. Unfortunately, there is no software for computers at all that work around the weird restrictions of Instagram only allowing you to delete posts from your phone. But again, odds are you’ll be doing this from your phone anyway.
3. The Nuclear Option (Delete Your Account)
This is for when you’ve done something so messed up to your account that it isn’t worth salvaging. Most people aren’t going to need to go this far, but for the people that do, you’ll be glad to know that deleting your Instagram account does also delete all the posts made by that account. If you need to destroy all your posts and leave no trace, this is the way to do it.
Note: this does not mean deleting the Instagram app. You have to delete the account itself. In case it wasn’t obvious, that means you cannot get anything from the deleted account back. This is a case where you can use your computer just as well as your smartphone.
Head to the Delete Your Account page.
Log into the account you want to delete if you aren’t already logged in.
Select a reason from the dropdown menu about why you are deleting your account (this is mandatory before you can delete your account, unfortunately.)
Click or tap the button labeled “Permanently Delete My Account”
Wipe the sweat from your forehead, the account is deleted.
Be sure to take any necessary precautions before deleting your account. That means saving any posts you do still want to keep around, alerting followers of where they might be able to find your next account, making a note of all the people you still want to follow on the new account, and so on. You can download a copy of all the account information from Instagram, but only before you delete your account.