How to Use Instagram Stories

If you haven’t done anything with Instagram Stories yet, it can seem overwhelming. There’s a lot of features that you can use, but it’s not always intuitive to use them, and seeing other people or companies’ professional-looking stories can be intimidating. So in this post, I’m going to walk you through creating an Instagram story and the tools you can use to make it great.

Let’s get started!

When you open the Instagram app, there are two ways to post a story.

The first is by clicking the camera icon in the top left corner. The second is by clicking on your profile picture labeled “You.” Both will lead you to the same screen where you can create your story.

On that screen, you have multiple options. At the top, you have the gear icon which will let you change the settings (the defaults are usually fine) and an arrow that will take you back to the previous screen. On the bottom left, there is a square Camera Roll button, which will let you post a picture you’ve taken in the last 24 hours to your Instagram story. Next to that is the lightning bolt button that toggles camera flash on and off, the large white record/take picture button, the arrows that switch to front-facing camera and back, and the face icon, which can apply filters to your face.

At the very bottom are options for the type of story you want to create:

  • Type: Text on a background
  • Live: A live video
  • Normal: A standard picture
  • Boomerang: A short video that plays forward and then in reverse
  • Superzoom: A video that zooms in while recording
  • Rewind: A video that plays in reverse
  • Hands-free: A video that doesn’t require you to press and hold the record button, just tap to start and stop

Once you take your picture or video, you get the modification options.

In the top left corner is the X to cancel and go back to the picture-taking screen. On the right, there is a small square face icon, which will let you add features like a location, hashtags, the time or day of the week, and various stickers and emojis. The pen icon will let you doodle on the image, and the Aa icon will let you add text.

Once you have it the way you want it, you can tap the “Send to” button to send it directly to someone, or tap the “Your Story” button to add it to your story.

And that’s it! You’ve just created a great Instagram story!

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